What do experts and world leaders think about the rule of law—and the World Justice Project's efforts to measure it? We asked several leading global voices for their thoughts.
Bill Gates | Co-Chair and Trustee | Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
"If you want to improve the rule of law, you need a way to measure it. The World Justice Project's Rule of Law Index helps the global community by doing just that - helping transform the global conversation about the rule of law, and in doing so, providing a new source of knowledge that can improve lives everywhere."
The Most Reverend Desmond Tutu | Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town
"The rule of law matters to all of us, to the entire human family. Wherever we live, however we look, regardless of ethnicity, gender, geographic location, or class - strengthening the rule of law is an essential ingredient to enhance justice, peace, and economic and social progress."
Thomas Carothers | Vice President for Studies | Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
"[The WJP Rule of Law Index] is general; it is specific; it is rigorous but accessible. It is an unusual project to take such a complicated concept and make a useful index that is useful for practitioners and scholars alike."
The Honorable Justice Hassan Bubacar Jallow | UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (UNICTR) | Rwanda
"The Rule of Law Index provides guidance in an objective manner, as a universal standard for self-evaluation and assessment, and as a compass for steering our nations forward, in demand for social, political, and economic justice and advancement."
Beatrice Mtetwa | Human Rights Lawyer | Zimbabwe
"The universality of the rule of law cannot be overemphasized. In the developing world, we general y have a political leadership that always looks at the rule of law as a foreign imposition from the West, without regard to the fact that the rule of law is in fact probably even more important for the developing world."
The Right Honorable Beverley McLachlin, P.C. | Chief Justice | Supreme Court of Canada
"[The Rule of Law Index] is a tool that can bridge the gap between what we think we need and tell us how we can actually achieve it. And this applies to all countries, be they countries that enjoy developed justice systems, or countries that are in the course of developing justice systems."
Jenny S. Martinez | Associate Dean for Curriculum | Professor of Law and Warren Christopher Professor in the Practice of International Law and Diplomacy | Stanford Law School
"The Index is incredibly useful, not just for academic researchers, who might be interested in how to improve rule of law, but also for people who are working on the ground day to day in this area."
The Honorable Petar Stoyanov | Former President | Bulgaria
"I am deeply convinced that the Rule of Law Index is among the most important tools for assisting the post-communist countries in Eastern Europe in the process of reforming our societies during the transition period."
Rajiv Shah | Founder and Managing Partner | Latitude Capital
"In the last decades we have accomplished so much in reducing poverty and improving the human condition. But the most important thing we have learned in that time is that establishing, respecting and enhancing the rule of law is the core element to continued progress."
Suet-Fern Lee | Partner | Morgan Lewis Stamford LLC
"The rule of law can deliver a powerful and lasting boost to the human and economic development of societies all over the world. The World Justice Project, through the development of its indices, does a wonderful job of helping governments and societies all over improve the rule of law in their own communities, in a low key and non-confrontational way."