Democracy Index


Democracy Index
Democracy Index 2010.
Full democracies:
  9-10
  8-8.9
Flawed democracies:
  7-7.9
  6-6.9
  No data
Hybrid regimes:
  5-5.9
  4-4.9
Authoritarian regimes:
  3-3.9
  2-2.9
  0-1.9
The Economist Intelligence Unit Democracy index map for 2008, with lighter colours representing more democratic countries. Countries with DI below 2 (clearly authoritarian) are black.

The Democracy Index is an index compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit that claims to measure the state of democracy in 167 countries, of which 166 are sovereign states and 165 are UN member states. The Economist Intelligence Unit's Democracy Index is based on 60 indicators grouped in five different categories: electoral process and pluralism, civil liberties, functioning of government, political participation and political culture. The Index was first produced in 2006, with updates produced in 2008 and 2010.

According to the latest issue of the Index, for 2010 Norway scored a total of 9.80 on a scale from zero to ten, which was the highest result, replacing Sweden which had the highest score in 2008, but slipped to fourth position in 2010. North Korea scored the lowest with 1.08, remaining at the bottom in 167th place, the same as in 2008. The Democracy Index for 2010 highlights the impact of the global financial crisis in 2008–09 on politics throughout most of the world, with the most significant changes happening in Europe. The Democracy Index score was lower in 2010 than in 2008 in 91 countries out of the 167 that are covered, although in the majority of these the deterioration was modest.[1]

The countries are categorized into full democracies, flawed democracies, hybrid regimes and authoritarian regimes. In 13 countries there was a change in regime type between 2008 and 2010; in 11 of these there was regression. Notably, negative political trends in France in recent years have resulted in the country being downgraded from a full democracy to the flawed democracy category.[2] Italy was also downgraded to the flawed democracy category, which the report attributes to the deterioration of media situation since the prime minister Silvio Berlusconi returned to power in 2008. Only two countries (Ghana and Mali in Sub-Saharan Africa) were upgraded, both from hybrid regimes to the flawed democracy category.

Contents

Methodology

As described in the report, the democracy index is a kind of weighted average based on the answers of 60 questions, each one with either two or three permitted alternative answers. Most answers are "experts' assessments"; the report does not indicate what kinds of experts, nor their number, nor whether the experts are employees of the Economist Intelligence Unit or independent scholars, nor the nationalities of the experts. Some answers are provided by public-opinion surveys from the respective countries. In the case of countries for which survey results are missing, survey results for similar countries and expert assessments are used in order to fill in gaps.

The questions are distributed into the five categories enumerated above. Each answer is translated to a mark, either 0 or 1, or for the three-answer alternative questions, 0.5. With the exceptions mentioned below, seemingly, the sums are added within each category, multiplied by ten, and divided by the total number of questions within the category. There are a few modifying dependencies, which are explained much more precisely than the main rule procedures. In a few cases, an answer yielding zero for one question voids another question; e.g., if the elections for the national legislature and head of government are not considered free (question 1), then the next question, "Are elections... fair?" is not considered, but automatically marked zero. Likewise, there are a few questions considered so important that a low score on them yields a penalty on the total score sum for their respective categories, namely:

  1. "Whether national elections are free and fair";
  2. "The security of voters";
  3. "The influence of foreign powers on government";
  4. "The capability of the civil servants to implement policies".

The five category indices, which all are listed in the report, are then averaged to find the democracy index for a given country. Finally, the democracy index, rounded to one decimal, decides the classification of the country, as quoted:

  1. Full democracies—scores of 8 to 10.
  2. Flawed democracies—scores of 6 to 7.9.
  3. Hybrid regimes—scores of 4 to 5.9.
  4. Authoritarian regimes—scores below 4.

The report discusses other indices of democracy, as defined e.g. by Freedom House, and argues for some of the choices made by the team from the Economist Intelligence Unit. In this comparison, a higher emphasis has been put on the public opinion and attitudes, as measured by public surveys, but on the other hand, economic living standard has not been weighted as one criterion of democracy (as seemingly some other investigators have done). [3][4]

There is no indication that this report has been presented or is planned to be presented in any academic context, or has been checked by or will be checked by a peer review.

Democracy index by regime type

The following table constitutes the number of countries in each category according to 2010 survey.[1]

Type of regime Countries  % of countries  % of world population
Full democracies 26 15.6 12.3
Flawed democracies 53 31.7 37.2
Hybrid regimes 33 19.8 14.0
Authoritarian regimes 55 32.9 36.5

World population refers to the total population of the 167 countries that are covered. Since this survey excludes only a few countries, this is nearly equal to the entire actual estimated world population in 2010.

Democracy index average by region

The following table constitutes the index average in each region.[1][5]

Rank Region 2006 2008 2010
1 Northern America 8.64 8.64 8.63
2 Western Europe 8.60 8.61 8.45
3 Latin America & the Caribbean 6.37 6.43 6.37
4 Eastern Europe 5.76 5.67 5.55
5 Asia & Australasia 5.44 5.58 5.53
6 Sub-Saharan Africa 4.24 4.28 4.23
7 Middle East & North Africa 3.53 3.54 3.43
Total 5.52 5.55 5.46

2010 rankings

Note: Rankings are for 2010. Some information may be out of date.[1]

No. Location Index Category Nominal type of government
1  Norway 9.80 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
2  Iceland 9.65 Full democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
3  Denmark 9.52 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
4  Sweden 9.50 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
5  New Zealand 9.26 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
6  Australia 9.22 Full democracy Federalism, constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
7  Finland 9.19 Full democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
8  Switzerland 9.09 Full democracy Federalism, directorial system, bicameralism
9  Canada 9.08 Full democracy Federalism, constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism, semi-direct democracy
10  Netherlands 8.99 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy, parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
11  Luxembourg 8.88 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
12  Ireland 8.79 Full democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
13  Austria 8.49 Full democracy Federalism, parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
14  Germany 8.38 Full democracy Federalism, parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
15  Malta 8.28 Full democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
16  Czech Republic 8.19 Full democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
17  United States 8.18 Full democracy Federalism, constitutional republic, presidential system, bicameralism
19  Spain 8.16 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
19  United Kingdom 8.16 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
20  South Korea 8.11 Full democracy Presidential system, unicameralism
21  Uruguay 8.10 Full democracy Presidential system, bicameralism
22  Japan 8.08 Full democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
23  Belgium 8.05 Full democracy Federalism, constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
24  Mauritius 8.04 Full democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy
24  Costa Rica 8.04 Full democracy Presidential system
26  Portugal 8.02 Full democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy
27  Cape Verde 7.94 Flawed democracy Unitary parliamentary republic
28  Greece 7.92 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy
29  Italy 7.83 Flawed democracy Bicameralism, parliamentary republic and parliamentary democracy
30  South Africa 7.79 Flawed democracy Constitutional democracy, bicameralism
31  France 7.77 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system, bicameralism
32  Slovenia 7.69 Flawed democracy Constitutional democracy, incomplete bicameralism
33  Estonia 7.68 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic, unicameralism
34  Chile 7.67 Flawed democracy Presidential system, bicameralism
35  Botswana 7.63 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic, unicameralism
36  Republic of China (Taiwan) 7.52 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system
37  Israel 7.48 Flawed democracy Parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
38  Slovakia 7.35 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic, unicameralism
39  Cyprus 7.29 Flawed democracy Presidential republic, unicameralism
40  India 7.28 Flawed democracy Federalism, constitutional republic, parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
41  Lithuania 7.24 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential republic, unicameralism
42  Timor-Leste 7.22 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic
43  Hungary 7.21 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic, unicameralism
43  Jamaica 7.21 Flawed democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, unicameralism
45  Trinidad and Tobago 7.16 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic
46  Panama 7.15 Flawed democracy Constitutional democracy
47  Brazil 7.12 Flawed democracy Federalism, presidential system, bicameralism
48  Poland 7.05 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic, bicameralism
48  Latvia 7.05 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic, unicameralism
50  Mexico 6.93 Flawed democracy Federalism, presidential system, republic
51  Argentina 6.84 Flawed democracy Federalism, presidential system, bicameralism
51  Bulgaria 6.84 Flawed democracy Parliamentary democracy
53  Croatia 6.81 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic, unicameralism
54  Suriname 6.65 Flawed democracy Constitutional democracy
55  Sri Lanka 6.64 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system, democratic socialist republic
56  Romania 6.60 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system, bicameralism
57  Colombia 6.55 Flawed democracy Presidential system, republic
57  Thailand 6.55 Flawed democracy Constitutional monarchy, parliamentary democracy, bicameralism
59  Papua New Guinea 6.54 Flawed democracy Federalism, constitutional monarchy, parliamentary democracy
60  Indonesia 6.53 Flawed democracy Presidential system, republic, regional state, bicameralism
61  El Salvador 6.47 Flawed democracy Presidential system, republic
62  Paraguay 6.40 Flawed democracy Constitutional republic, presidential system
62  Peru 6.40 Flawed democracy Presidential system, republic, unicameralism
64  Mongolia 6.36 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system, republic
65  Serbia 6.33 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic
65  Moldova 6.33 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic
67  Ukraine 6.30 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system, republic
68  Montenegro 6.27 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic
69  Namibia 6.23 Flawed democracy Republic
70  Dominican Republic 6.20 Flawed democracy Democratic republic, representative democracy
71  Malaysia 6.19 Flawed democracy Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy
72  Benin 6.17 Flawed democracy Republic
73  Macedonia 6.16 Flawed democracy Parliamentary republic
74  Philippines 6.12 Flawed democracy Presidential system, constitutional republic, bicameralism
75  Guyana 6.05 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system, republic
75  Guatemala 6.05 Flawed democracy Presidential republic
77  Lesotho 6.02 Flawed democracy Constitutional monarchy, parliamentary system
77  Ghana 6.02 Flawed democracy Presidential system, constitutional republic
79  Mali 6.01 Flawed democracy Semi-presidential system
80  Hong Kong 5.92 Hybrid regime Quasi-presidential Autonomous region with limited suffrage, unicameralism
80  Bolivia 5.92 Hybrid regime Presidential republic, unitary state
82  Singapore 5.89 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic
83  Bangladesh 5.87 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic, unitary state
84  Albania 5.86 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic
85  Malawi 5.84 Hybrid regime Republic
86  Lebanon 5.82 Hybrid regime Confessionalist parliamentary republic
87  Ecuador 5.77 Hybrid regime Presidential system
88  Honduras 5.76 Hybrid regime Constitutional republic
89  Turkey 5.73 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic
89  Nicaragua 5.73 Hybrid regime Presidential republic
91  Zambia 5.68 Hybrid regime Republic
92  Tanzania 5.64 Hybrid regime Republic
93  Palestine 5.44 Hybrid regime Semi-presidential system, parliamentary democracy
94  Bosnia and Herzegovina 5.32 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic
95  Senegal 5.27 Hybrid regime Semi-presidential system
96  Venezuela 5.18 Hybrid regime Federalism, presidential system
97  Liberia 5.07 Hybrid regime Presidential Republic
98  Uganda 5.05 Hybrid regime Presidential system, republic
99  Mozambique 4.90 Hybrid regime Presidential system
100  Cambodia 4.87 Hybrid regime Constitutional monarchy, parliamentary democracy
101  Kenya 4.71 Hybrid regime Presidential system
102  Bhutan 4.68 Hybrid regime Constitutional monarchy, parliamentary democracy
103  Georgia 4.59 Hybrid regime Semi-presidential system, republic
104  Pakistan 4.55 Hybrid regime Islamic republic, federalism, parliamentary republic
105  Sierra Leone 4.51 Hybrid regime Constitutional republic
106  Kyrgyzstan 4.31 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic
107  Russia 4.26 Hybrid regime Federalism, semi-presidential system, bicameralism
108  Nepal 4.24 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic
109  Armenia 4.09 Hybrid regime Presidential republic
110  Burundi 4.01 Hybrid regime Republic
111  Haiti 4.00 Hybrid regime Semi-presidential system, republic
111  Iraq 4.00 Hybrid regime Parliamentary republic
113  Madagascar 3.94 Authoritarian regime Presidential system
114  Kuwait 3.88 Authoritarian regime Constitutional monarchy
115  Mauritania 3.86 Authoritarian regime Islamic republic
116  Morocco 3.79 Authoritarian regime Constitutional monarchy
117  Jordan 3.74 Authoritarian regime Constitutional monarchy
118  Ethiopia 3.68 Authoritarian regime Federalism, parliamentary republic
119  Fiji 3.62 Authoritarian regime Military Junta
120  Burkina Faso 3.59 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential system, republic
121  Cuba 3.52 Authoritarian regime Socialist republic, single-party communist state
122  Bahrain 3.49 Authoritarian regime Absolute monarchy
123  Nigeria 3.47 Authoritarian regime Federalism, presidential system
124  Togo 3.45 Authoritarian regime Republic
125  Algeria 3.44 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential system, republic
126  Cameroon 3.41 Authoritarian regime Republic
126  Comoros 3.41 Authoritarian regime Federal Republic
128  Niger 3.38 Authoritarian regime Military Junta
128  The Gambia 3.38 Authoritarian regime Republic
130  Belarus 3.34 Authoritarian regime Presidential system
131  Angola 3.32 Authoritarian regime Presidential system
132  Kazakhstan 3.30 Authoritarian regime Presidential system
133  Gabon 3.29 Authoritarian regime Republic
134  Rwanda 3.25 Authoritarian regime Republic
135  Azerbaijan 3.15 Authoritarian regime Presidential system
136  People's Republic of China 3.14 Authoritarian regime People's democratic dictatorship, single-party communist state
137  Qatar 3.09 Authoritarian regime Constitutional monarchy
138  Egypt 3.07 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential system, Republic
139  Côte d'Ivoire 3.02 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential system, republic
140  Vietnam 2.94 Authoritarian regime Socialist republic, single-party communist state
141  Swaziland 2.90 Authoritarian regime Absolute monarchy
142  Republic of the Congo 2.89 Authoritarian regime Republic
143  Oman 2.86 Authoritarian regime Islamic absolute monarchy
144  Guinea 2.79 Authoritarian regime Military junta
144  Tunisia 2.79 Authoritarian regime Republic
146  Zimbabwe 2.64 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential, parliamentary, consociationalist republic
146  Yemen 2.64 Authoritarian regime Republic
148  United Arab Emirates 2.52 Authoritarian regime Federalism, constitutional monarchy
149  Tajikistan 2.51 Authoritarian regime Presidential system
150  Afghanistan 2.48 Authoritarian regime Islamic republic
151  Sudan 2.42 Authoritarian regime Federalism, presidential system, republic
152  Eritrea 2.31 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential republic
152  Syria 2.31 Authoritarian regime Presidential system, single party, republic
154  Djibouti 2.20 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential republic
155  Democratic Republic of the Congo 2.15 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential republic
156  Laos 2.10 Authoritarian regime Socialist republic, single-party communist state
157  Guinea-Bissau 1.99 Authoritarian regime Semi-presidential system, republic
158  Libya 1.94 Authoritarian regime Until 2011 Jamahiriya ("State of the masses")
158  Iran 1.94 Authoritarian regime Islamic republic
160  Equatorial Guinea 1.84 Authoritarian regime Presidential republic
160  Saudi Arabia 1.84 Authoritarian regime Islamic absolute monarchy
162  Central African Republic 1.82 Authoritarian regime Republic
163  Myanmar (Burma) 1.77 Authoritarian regime Military junta (de facto military dictatorship)
164  Uzbekistan 1.74 Authoritarian regime Presidential republic
165  Turkmenistan 1.72 Authoritarian regime Presidential republic, single-party state
166  Chad 1.52 Authoritarian regime Republic
167  North Korea 1.08 Authoritarian regime Socialist republic, single-party communist state, Juche regime, police state

See also

References

External links


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