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M49 used in FAO - current

General information

In Caliper

The code lists listed under the group "Geography" (cf. vocabularies in Skosmos) are published separately to reflect the common habit of seeing code lists as independent objects, optionally provided with correspondences from one list to the other. However, most of these code lists share a large number of "building blocks" (countries) and only differ by a few of them, or their grouping. Starting from this observation, we have used the SKOS features that allow us to state that one concept (country, in this case) may belong to one or more concept schemes. The expected advantages consists in having less entities to maintain and more possibilities for collaboration between custodians of different lists. 

In short, what you see as five separate lists in dissemination (cf. entry page of Sksmos, category "Geography"), actually corresponds to only one "project" in our editing platform. This can be appreciated in VocBench, where a single project called "Geo" exists, which includes all data visible in Skosmos as separate lists. If you are curious, learn how to enter VocBench as a "guest". Once in VocBench:

  • select the appropriate concept scheme to see only the concepts belonging to that scheme, and
  • select the specific hierarchical property to visualize the corresponding grouping of countries.

The difference in grouping may be especially appreciated in the case of "SDG country grouping".


  • The same mechanism can be appreciated in PMKI only partially, given to the fact that the feature that allows one to select the specific property to use to build the hierarchy is not yet implemented.
  • Country codes in other code lists, such as ISO2 and ISO3 are modelled as properties of each country or region.
  • Territories no longer existing are also included, in the concept scheme "M49-EX scheme" (not published on Skosmos).
This is the Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS) derived from the M49 FAO. See original dataset metadata at
RDF publisher
Caliper team (
RDF version:
Content: Labels in EN (285), FR (251), ES (251), RU (245), Notes (2)
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