Capturing the rule of law changes during a global pandemic.

The global COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted and reinforced longstanding structural inequalities and governance weaknesses. On October 14th we launched the 2021 World Justice Project (WJP) Rule of Law Index®️, the world’s leading source for original rule of law data. The 2021 Index is the first in this annual series to capture rule of law changes during the global COVID-19 pandemic. 

Since 2009, WJP has documented rule of law trends in its annual WJP Rule of Law Index®, expanded this year to cover 139 countries and jurisdictions. The Index relies on survey responses gathered from more than 138,000 households and 4,200 experts to measure how the rule of law is experienced and perceived in practical, everyday situations. The Index covers such rule of law factors as constraints on government power, fundamental rights, corruption, discrimination, security, and the functioning of regulatory, criminal, and civil justice systems. This quantitative tool provides citizens, governments, policymakers, donors, businesses, media, academics, and civil society organizations around the world with a comprehensive comparative analysis of countries’ adherence to universal rule of law principles. 

Explore the Index


 

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Rede Wayuri is a network of 55 Indigenous communicators in the Rio Negro region of Brazil. Through their use of WhatsApp and local radio, they have not only reported on topics like illegal mining in the Amazon, but also distributed accurate information about the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccines.   At the World Justice Forum in The Hague this past June, Rede Wayuri was presented with the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Award for their outstanding work in countering disinformation by bringing accurate, reliable information to 23 Indigenous peoples and 750 communities in five local languages and Portuguese. 

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When I was taking off to attend my first World Justice Forum, I had every expectation that I would hear the brightest minds debating the most complex social issues of our time. I was ready to learn about challenges unknown to me, faced by communities outside of the United States. What I didn’t expect was to see so many effective and transformative solutions that had already been implemented across the globe. The Justice Expo was not a showcase of proposals, suggestions, or hypotheses. It was an inventors’ forum: a spectacular display of evidence that dramatic change and global healing are achievable through innovation.

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During the World Justice Forum, Dr. Ahmad Sarmast, founder of the Afghanistan National Institute of Music (ANIM), called on the international community to save Afghan music, women musicians, and all Afghan musicians. He described the human rights that have been stripped away since the Taliban’s August 2021 takeover made Afghanistan a “silent nation.” You can read Dr. Sarmast’s full remarks from June 1, 2022, in The Hague below, edited for clarity, and watch a performance by ANIM students who now live in exile Portugal.  

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As one of Cambodia’s first human rights defenders, Vandeth recently made the difficult decision to stay home when the World Justice Project invited 30 World Justice Challenge finalists to showcase their exemplary rule of law projects at the World Justice Forum in The Hague.

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