United Nations geoscheme

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Statistical regions as defined by UNSD. Antarctica is omitted.

The United Nations geoscheme is a system which divides the countries of the world into regional and subregional groups. It was devised by the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) based on the M49 coding classification.[1][2][3]


The creators note that "the assignment of countries or areas to specific groupings is for statistical convenience and does not imply any assumption regarding political or other affiliation of countries or territories".[4]

The UNSD geoscheme does not set a standard for the entire United Nations System, and it often differs from geographic definitions used by the autonomous United Nations specialized agencies for their own organizational convenience. For instance, UNSD includes Georgia and Cyprus, a member of the European Union, into Western Asia, yet the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and UNESCO include them in Europe.[5][6]

The schema was created for statistical analysis and consists of macro-geographical regions arranged to the extent possible according to continents. Within these groupings, smaller, geographical subregions and selected economic and other groupings allow for detailed analysis.

Other alternative groupings include the World Bank regional classification,[7] CIA World Factbook regions and ICANN Geographic Regions.[8][9]

List of regions and subregions[edit]

* These three subregions together form the continent of North America.[3]
** These two regional continents form the geographic continent of Eurasia which is not part of the UN geoscheme.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ajey Lele (20 October 2012). Asian Space Race: Rhetoric or Reality?. Springer Science & Business Media. pp. 8–. ISBN 978-81-322-0733-7. Te best option to identify the states from Asia could be use the United Nations (UN) geoscheme for Asia. As per this, Asia is subdivided to four broad categories: Wastern Asia, .. ... 
  2. ^ Reuben P. Keller; Marc W. Cadotte; Glenn Sandiford (24 November 2014). Invasive Species in a Globalized World: Ecological, Social, and Legal Perspectives on Policy. University of Chicago Press. pp. 128–. ISBN 978-0-226-16618-6. 
  3. ^ a b United Nations Statistics Division - Standard Country and Area Codes Classifications
  4. ^ Standard country or area codes and geographical regions for statistical use
  5. ^ United Nations Industrial Organisation p. 14
  6. ^ UNESCO, Europe and North America, Retrieved: 10 May 2016
  7. ^ Ms. Katrin Elborgh-Woytek; Ms. Monique Newiak; Ms. Kalpana Kochhar; Ms. Stefania Fabrizio, Kangni Kpodar, Mr. Philippe Wingender, Mr. Benedict J. Clements, Mr. Gerd Schwartz (20 September 2013). Women, Work, and the Economy:Macroeconomic Gains from Gender Equity. International Monetary Fund. p. 7. ISBN 978-1-4843-9529-5. Country groups are based on UN geoscheme and World Bank regional classification  Cite uses deprecated parameter |coauthors= (help)
  8. ^ ICANN Geographic Regions
  9. ^ ICANN Geographical Regions, Final Report by the ccNSO Regions Working Group, For Submission to the ICANN Board, 24 September 2007