In Spain today, economic issues are often addressed from a regional perspective. This is particularly the case in areas such as growth, economic policy, infrastructure, autonomous community financing, indebtedness, fiscal balances, etc. The abundance of research on these topics has been facilitated by the growing body of regional statistics built up in recent decades by the National Statistics Office (INE), regional statistics agencies, and other institutions and research groups, among them the BBVA Foundation and the Valencian Economic Research Institute (Ivie). Both these organizations have conducted ambitious data production operations providing invaluable input to public policy design and diagnosis, in many cases through the research program they have been running jointly since 1994.

The research project this database is derived from sought to go a step further in two respects. Firstly, by generating fresh information on public-sector activity in Spain and its regions and, secondly, by analyzing the data obtained in order to gain a more detailed picture of the extent of this activity, the reasons underlying regional differences, and their implications in terms of inter-territorial solidarity and economic efficiency.