This data access service is provided by the Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN), which operates the Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC) for the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA
The ENTRI system brings together two unique sources of information;
international environmental treaties as well as national level
socio-economic and natural resource data. The ENTRI system allows you to
associate treaties, countries, as well as data about countries, with one
another. This section of the guide discusses the basic features currently
available and also offers suggestions which will allow you to take full
advantage of the flexibility built into the system. In particular, the
following topics will be covered in this section:
Just click on any one of the above items to "jump" to that section of this
document. The links you will see in each section of this guide will send
you to the ENTRI system itself.
The content of the ENTRI system is intended to help you address a set
of key issues related to the human
dimensions of global environmental
change. At the heart of the system is a sophisticated query engine which
you to simultaneously search for treaties, countries, and data. A powerful, and
convenient, way to search for data is through a set of
pre-defined "basic questions". These questions reflect
the most common types of queries users request from the system. Instead of
building a query from scratch, we have "pre-defined" several questions
which normally satisfy our user's data requirements. In the near future,
we hope that you will be able to construct your own complex queries (and
please let us know if you're
interested in that capability);
for now, we believe that the "built-in" questions will satisfy many of
Before the Basic Questions are explored in detail, the following
sub-sections discuss some important aspects of the system. In them, you
will find general information on how to obtain information from the
database. Please keep in mind that the links in these sub-sections
lead directly into the ENTRI system.
Searching for International Environmental Treaties
The ENTRI system allows you to search for treaties in a number of ways.
You may use the free-text
search engine engine to find treaties or you may search the entire
collection either alphabetically or chronologically. The free-text search
engine is particularly useful if you want to see what treaties contain a
reference to a specific word or
phrase such as "marine pollution" or "biodiversity". A list of treaties
which match the expression you requested will be returned. Just click on
any of the treaties in the list to view the full text of that treaty.
In addition to the full texts of treaties, you may also search for treaty
summaries. As with the full text feature, you can search for brief
descriptions of treaties in different ways. You may execute a free-text
search of the summaries or search a chro nological list of summary files.
An alphabetical list of the summaries is unavailable at this time.
These types of searches are useful if you are not quite sure what you are
after, or want to get an overview of what the collection contains. Once
you have done that, it will probably be of more interest to associate
countries with treaties and download relevant data about those countries.
Associating Treaties with Countries
Although associating treaties with specific issue areas, such as marine
oil pollution or ozone depletion, is interesting and useful to a wide
range of research objectives, knowing what treaties a country is party to
is even more useful. As discussed in Section One of the guide,
nation-states are the primary political actors responding to global
environmental change. Knowing what treaties a country is party to tells
you a great deal about that state and its commitment to addressing
Unfortunately, the process of associating countries and treaties is
more complex than simply knowing which treaties have been signed by a
particular state. In general, it is most useful to know when a treaty
entered into force (when the country "officially" began to abide by the
terms of the treaty) rather than when the country signed a particular
treaty. The ENTRI system provides users with as much treaty "status"
information as possible.
Accessing National Level Data
In addition to associating treaties with countries, ENTRI also allows you
to access a wide range of national level data. For example, you may want
to know the Per Capita GNP of the signatories of the Montreal Protocol or
determine what treaties states with a population over 100 million tend to
sign. The data, provided by the World Resources Institute, provides a
rich source of socio-economic and natural resource data.
As indicated above, the Basic Questions are a set of pre-defined research
questions which offer a "short-cut" method of constructing a query. By
clicking on any one of the Basic Questions, you are systematically led
through the query building process relevant to the question you selected.
Once "inside" a question, just follow the instructions. (WARNING: it may take as much as 30 seconds for initial
loading of each question; but results are returned much more quickly.)
The following represent the current suite of available questions. By
clicking on a question, you are sent directly to that question and are
ready to access the database. A short description of each question is
provided directly under each of them (please check back often as we
frequently enhance the system).
This question enables users to determine when a specific treaty or
treaties became legally binding (for the signatories of that treaty).
When you chose this question, you are presented with an alphabetical list
of treaties. Just click on a treaty and the database will return the
relevant information on that treaty. You can only choose one treaty at a
Also note that a variety of options are available once the
database returns information back to you. The full text of the treaty you
originally selected can be viewed by clicking on the title. Also, you
will see a button near the bottom of the screen which enables you to get
more information on the status of the treaty you selected.
Although self-evident, this question enables you to determine which
treaties a country is party to. For example, you could determine which
treaties the United States has signed since 1945, or any other period of
The database returns a table with the treaties signed by the country
you selected. Relevant treaty information is also returned. Just click
on a treaty title to get a full text of that treaty.
Once again, this question is more or less self-evident. Just select a
treaty from the list and all the countries party to that treaty will be
returned. As is always the case, you can click on the treaty title to get
the full text of the treaty itself.
After clicking on this question, you are asked to identify one of the
issue areas which SEDAC deems to be
particularly relevant to
the study of global environmental change and international environmental
Based on which issue area you select, a range of variables will be
returned to you. Please select the variables or variable which you want
to view. In addition to selecting from the list of variables, you must
also choose one or more countries from the list provided. In this way,
you associate variables and countries with one another.
This question allows you to obtain data on countries that are or are
not parties to specific treaties. You are asked to select a treaty and
then choose whether you want data on countries that are or are not party
to that specific treaty. Based on that preference, a list of countries
and SEDAC issue areas will be presented. Just select the variables that
are of interest to you and then submit your query.
This question allows you to associate countries and treaties based on
specific values of user-specified variables. The idea is to select a
treaty and a set of variables you want to associate that treaty with.
Once you specify a range of accepted values for the variables, all
countries that fall within the specified range and which are party to the
identified treaty will be returned.
For example, you may want to
find out which countries with a GDP (Gross Domestic Product) over $10,000
(US $) are party to the Framework Convention on Climate Control (FCCC).
The system will lead you through this query by allowing you to specify the
treaty, variable, and range you are interested in.
With this type of question, it is easy to associate irrelevant data
with specific treaties. For example, it would not make much sense to know
what countries are party to the European Convention for the Protection of
Pet Animals (13 November 1987) based on an Asian nation's fresh water fish
yield. In other words, some degree of caution should be exercised when
associating variables and treaties. While you are free to choose whatever
variables and treaties you want, we suggest you have some idea as to how the two relate to one another.
Please note that you may only select one variable and one treaty per query at this time. We will increase the flexibility of this question very soon.
This question enables you to select treaties which fall into a
specific category. Just select which subject, as determined by the IUCN,
which you are interested in, and hit the return button. All the treaties
which fall into that subject area will be returned.