User's Guide

Database User's Guide




The Security Assistance Monitor regularly updates four open-source databases on U.S. foreign security sector assistance to help researchers, media, civil society, and policy makers better monitor and analyze U.S. engagement with foreign militaries and police around the world. This one-of-a-kind, comprehensive resource includes unique databases on U.S. security aid, U.S. military training, U.S. arms sales, and U.S. economic aid with data from Fiscal Year (FY) 2000 to the upcoming Fiscal Year (except Latin America where the data goes back to 1996) covering the entire world. 

Within these databases, user’s can find and explore information on many key U.S. security sector assistance questions, such as the below. For more detail on what each of our databases include, please click here.

  • How much U.S. security aid was allocated to Egypt or the Middle East and North Africa region in the past four years?
  • What is the total value for U.S. arms sales deliveries to Saudi Arabia in FY 2017?
  • Which country had the most number of U.S. military trainees in Sub-Saharan Africa in general or through the U.S. Peacekeeping Operations program in particular in FY 2017?
  • What was the ratio of U.S. military and police versus U.S. economic aid to Niger in the past four years?


Although the U.S. government maintains two public databases (Foreign Aid Dashboard or Foreign Aid Explorer) to help provide transparency on U.S. foreign aid, these databases do not yet include data on many of U.S. security aid programs that we include, especially programs funded by the Defense Department. Nor do they provide reliable and consistent country-level data as the Government Accountability Office has identified. In order to show a more comprehensive picture of U.S. security aid, we work with the U.S. Congress and the administration to obtain data on over 30 different U.S. security assistance funding accounts or programs. We maintain the only database on U.S. arms sales notifications, authorizations, and deliveries. For information on our database sources and methodolgy, please click here. You can also find the source we use for each data point by clicking on specific amounts in the pivot tables.

For each database, user’s can either access the data through a Dashboard, Pivot Table, or Download function. The dashboard is a series of interactive visualizations that provide a snap shot of key data points. The pivot table is an interactive table that allows users to view data trends over years by recipient or program or funding account. User’s can also use the download function to download the entire database. The country dashboards include data from all of our four databases to provide a broad overview of U.S. assistance to the country. We have also created a visual guide on how to use the dashboard, pivot tables, or download functions.

Our data is not adjusted for inflation but reflects the actual dollars listed in the U.S. government report. We use this method as it helps users easily verify our specific figures. If you would like to source one of our databases in your publication, please make sure and identify the SAM program, the specific database used, and the date accessed. If you have any questions or comments, please contact us at We are happy to help answer your questions or to assist you in your research.





What does the Security Assistance Monitor Data include?


What is U.S. Foreign Aid and Arms Sales?




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Visual Walkthrough Tutorial of Databases: