This map layer shows the ratio of the number of heavy weapons systems in 2017 to the population of all available countries, classified in five categories.

Example of how to read the map:

In 2017, South Korea had 2.32 heavy weapons systems per 10,000 inhabitants.


  • BICC - Bonn International Center for Conversion

    BICC is an independent, not-for profit organisation and deals with a wide range of global topics in the field of peace and conflict research centering on Conversion Studies.

    BICC calculates the number of heavy weapons systems on an annual basis. Its primary source for data on weapons holdings is the publication The Military Balance of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS).When necessary, IISS data have been complemented by information on individual countries from various sources, such as Jane’s weapons handbooks and newspaper articles.

    The BICC database on weapons holdings contains data on ten types of weapons of the following four categories a) heavy weapons systems: armoured vehicles (armoured personnel carriers, light tanks, combat tanks), b) artillery of more than 100mm calibre (multiple rocket launchers, howitzers, field howitzers) c) combat aircraft (attack helicopters, fixed-wing aircraft), and d) combat vessels (submarines, surface vessels larger than corvettes). Smaller combat vessels as well as carrier vessels, tankers, etc. have not been taken into account.

The definition of “weapons holdings” only includes holdings of government troops; holdings of armed opposition groups are not included, neither are stored weapons systems.

  • IISS - International Institute for Strategic Studies

    In its annual Military Balance, the IISS publishes data on military personnel. The international institute provides research-based policy advice and deals with military and strategic questions. In the annual Military Balance, it provides information on the number of soldiers, weapons, population and GDP of up to 171 countries. A detailed list can be found of a respective country’s weapons and soldiers (including recruits and paramilitaries). The IISS also assesses the military capacities and arms economies.

  • The World Bank

    The World Bank with its seat in Washington supports developing countries through financial and technical means. Its focus is the sustainable fight against poverty through training activities and advisory services. The World Bank has 188 members and is divided into five institutions. It obtains its data on the population from the United Nations. As not all governments provide data on a yearly basis, the United Nations refer their estimates to the last official population census. It takes into account the factors of birth- and death rate as well as international migration.


Buchhandlungen bangen um die Buchpreisbindung

Data tables

For some select map layers, the information portal ‘War and Peace’ provides the user with all used data sets as tables.

More ...
Magnifying Glass in front of a Boston map

Country portraits

In the country reports, data and information are collected by country and put into tables that are used in the modules as a basis for maps and illustrations.

More ...
Compass with Mirror

Navigation and operation

The information and data of each module are primarily made available as selectable map layers and are complemented by texts and graphs. The map layers can be found on the right hand side and are listed according to themes and sub-themes.

More ...