31 January 2018 (5:00 AM EDT)
World Justice Project (WJP) Releases 2017-2018 WJP Rule of Law Index
WASHINGTON, DC (31 January 2018) – The World Justice Project (WJP) today released the 2017-2018 WJP Rule of Law Index® which measures rule of law adherence in 113 countries worldwide based on more than 110,000 household and 3,000 expert surveys. Featuring primary data, the WJP Rule of Law Index measures countries’ rule of law performance across eight factors: Constraints on Government Powers, Absence of Corruption, Open Government, Fundamental Rights, Order and Security, Regulatory Enforcement, Civil Justice, and Criminal Justice.
Ethiopia’s overall rule of law score places it at 16 out of 18 countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa region* and 10 out of 12 among low income** countries. Significant trends included a deterioration in Order and Security.
The top three overall performers in the 2017-2018 WJP Rule of Law Index were Denmark (1), Norway (2), and Finland (3); the bottom three were Afghanistan (111), Cambodia (112), and Venezuela (113).
Globally, a majority of countries worldwide saw their scores decline since the publication of the last WJP Rule of Law Index (in October 2016) in the areas of human rights, checks on government powers, and civil and criminal justice.
Regionally, Sub-Saharan Africa’s top performer is Ghana, supplanting South Africa from 2016 and taking 43rd place globally. Burkina Faso and Kenya saw the biggest improvement in rank among the 18 countries indexed in the region, climbing 9 and 5 spots respectively in the global rankings. Madagascar experienced the biggest decline in rank, dropping eight spots. Overall, the region showed the most improvements in Absence of Corruption, with four countries experiencing upward trends in this factor and none showing downward trends.
The WJP Rule of Law Index® is the world’s leading source for original data on the rule of law. The Index relies on more than 110,000 household and 3,000 expert surveys to measure how the rule of law is experienced and perceived in practical, everyday situations by the general public worldwide. Performance is measured using 44 indicators across eight primary rule of law factors, each of which is scored and ranked globally and against regional and income peers: Constraints on Government Powers, Absence of Corruption, Open Government, Fundamental Rights, Order and Security, Regulatory Enforcement, Civil Justice, and Criminal Justice.
“Effective rule of law is the foundation for communities of equity, opportunity, and peace,” said William H. Neukom, WJP founder and CEO. “No country has achieved a perfect realization of the rule of law. The WJP Rule of Law Index is intended to be a first step in setting benchmarks, informing reforms, stimulating programs, and deepening appreciation and understanding for the foundational importance of the rule of law.”
The complete 2017-2018 report—including country profiles, data visualizations, methodology, and download options—is available on January 31 at: www.worldjusticeproject.org/rule-of-law-index
Countries measured in the Sub-Saharan Africa region: Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
**Low income countries: Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Nepal, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda, Zimbabwe
ABOUT THE WORLD JUSTICE PROJECT:
The World Justice Project (WJP) is an independent, multidisciplinary organization working to advance the rule of law worldwide. Effective rule of law reduces corruption, combats poverty and disease, and protects people from injustices large and small. It is the foundation for communities of equity, opportunity, and peace—underpinning development, accountable government, and respect for fundamental rights. Learn more at: www.worldjusticeproject.org