Public Security > Homicide Monitor


Distribution, dimensions and dynamics
of lethal violence in the world

The Homicide Monitor, from the Igarapé Institute, is one of the most comprehensive publicly available datasets on murder in the world. 


It covers 220 countries and territories, with a focus on the Americas, where information is updated by 2022 for most countries. Find highlights below.


The Americas are home to 13% of world population but account for 34% of global homicides, according to figures compiled by UNODC (global estimates by 2023). The Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region alone, with 8% of world population, accounts for 28% of homicides.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, even with lockdowns, homicides in the Americas fell by only 3% (2020).

The reduction looks even less impressive when compared with the 9% fall in homicides over the previous 12 months (2019 over 2018).

By 2021, North America and The Caribbean registered increases of 8% and 9%, while Central and South America have small reductions of 2%. The countries of the region with the highest increases are Ecuador (+87%) and Bahamas (+63%), and the biggest reductions Peru (-47%) and Chile (-22%)

Top 13 countries by homicide rate

comparison 2021-2022

The world’s most lethal countries

(homicides per 100,000 population)

Considering the number of victims,
Brazil was the world’s most homicidal country in 2022.

The top 5 countries
(Brazil, Nigeria, Mexico, India and South Africa) account for 38% of global homicides.

Homicide concentration

Urban homicide is concentrated in a relatively small number of countries

Among the 30 world cities with the highest homicide rates:

Homicide as
an affliction
of youth


of total homicides victims are
aged 17 to 30 across countries in LAC

(data by 2021)


of LAC homicide victims are male compared with the global average of 78%

(UNODC 2012)



of homicides are committed with firearms in LAC. Worldwide the figure is 41%

(UNODC 2012)

Change by Evolution homicide rate 2015-2022 top 5 cities by homicide rate by 2022

Since 2015, the Igarapé Institute released a series of Homicide Dispatch, brief analytical papers, in English, Spanish and Portuguese, explaining lethal violence patterns and trends. The papers are written by international experts to tell the stories behind data. Experts in criminology, public health and other social sciences also contributed to discussions with documents underlying causes and broad consequences of murders, and different ways governments register homicides.

Publication on Citizen Security

In the media

World Economic Forum
associated press ap
bbc newshour 42 prisoners strangled to death in Brazilian prisons
NPR (2)
the new york times
the new york times
apolitical logo
midias - logomarcas
associated press ap

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