Archigos is the definitive dataset on national chief executives around the world since the late 19th century.
Constructed by Hein Goemans, Kristian Skrede Gleditsch, and Giacomo Chiozza.
Version 2.5 is used by Jones and Olken (2006).
Version 1.4 is used by Marinov (2005).
Also used by Gleditsch and Choung (2004).
There were several previous attempts to construct the dataset of national political leaders (see below). But in terms of coverage and reliability, Archigos is superior to any of these.
1. Bienen and van de Walle (1991) Of Time and Power: Leadership Duration in the Modern World (Stanford University Press)
The Appendix provides the whole data.
Variables: How many years in office, when and how they enter and leave the executive office, the age when assuming office, whether military or civilian, etc. for 167 countries and years until 1987
Used by Londregan and Poole (1996) "Does High Income Promote Democracy?" World Politics, 49(1): 1-30, whose dataset is downloadable here.
Also used by Maria E. Gallego (1998) "Economic Performance and Leadership Accountability: An Econometric Analysis," Economics and Politics, 10(3), pp.249-296.
2. Jones and Olken (2005) "Do Leaders Matter? National Leadership and Growth since World War II", Quarterly Journal of Economics, 120, pp.835-864.
Variables: when national leaders died from natural causes, for 130 countries (for which data is available in the Penn World Table) and years 1945-2000.
3. Bueno de Mesquita et al. (2003) The Logic of Political Survival (MIT Press)
Downloadable from this website - look for "leader_data.zip")
Variables: Name of leader, date of entry, and date of exit, for 1793-2002.
Data collection method is described in Bueno de Mesquita et al. (2003, pp.292-93).