March 5, 2014
NEW YORK – Denmark (Western Europe and North America), Uruguay (Latin America and the Caribbean), Botswana (Sub-Saharan Africa), New Zealand (East Asia and Pacific), Georgia (Eastern Europe and Central Asia), Sri Lanka (South Asia), and the United Arab Emirates (Middle East and North Africa) led their regions on rule of law performance, according to the World Justice Project’s WJP Rule of Law Index 2014.
The Index relies on over 100,000 household and 2,400 expert surveys to measure how the rule of law is experienced in everyday life around the world. Adherence is assessed using 47 indicators organized around eight themes: constraints on government powers, absence of corruption, open government, fundamental rights, order and security, regulatory enforcement, civil justice, and criminal justice. More than 500 variables are computed to produce these indicators for every country.
The Index also uncovered recent global trends, including a significant decline in criminal justice worldwide: 20 countries showed a significant decline in their score over last year, while none of the 99 countries in the Index demonstrated significant improvement. The indicator that improved the most was order and security: 25 countries showed a significant improvement. Split global trends were seen with an overall decline shown in constraints on government, fundamental rights, and civil justice; overall improvement was seen in absence of corruption, open government, and regulatory enforcement.
“Effective rule of law helps reduce corruption, alleviate poverty, improve public health and education, and protect people from injustices and dangers large and small,” said William H. Neukom, WJP Founder and CEO. “Wherever we come from, the rule of law can always be strengthened.”
The Index is the most comprehensive index of its kind and the only to rely solely on primary data. The 2014 Index includes key global findings as well as an analysis of regional strengths, rule of law challenges, best and worst performers, and trends to watch.
The 2014 Index is the fourth report in an annual series and includes new data and features:
A copy of the full WJP Rule of Law Index 2014, including individual country profiles for the 99 countries surveyed, can be downloaded at: worldjusticeproject.org/rule-of-law-index
About the World Justice Project
The World Justice Project (WJP) is an independent, multidisciplinary organization working to advance the rule of law around the globe. Establishing the rule of law is fundamental to achieving communities of opportunity and equity—communities that offer sustainable economic development, accountable government, and respect for fundamental rights. Our work engages citizens and leaders worldwide and from all work disciplines to advance the rule of law. Through our mutually reinforcing programs of Research and Scholarship, the WJP Rule of Law Index®, and Engagement, WJP seeks to increase public awareness about the foundational importance of the rule of law, stimulate government reforms, and develop practical programs at the community level. Learn more: www.worldjusticeproject.org