24 September 2012

Survey statistics provide some sort of guide to the nature of governance and social conditions – and a way of comparing national characteristics and the state of “good government”.  The Economist “Pocket  World of Figures 2013”  collates  national rankings on a range of social circumstances ‘‘… from boozing and banking, travel and TV habits, politics, population and Nobel Peace Prize winners..”

The part of the Economist promotion reported by New Zealand media is that New Zealand has slipped from being the country with the highest level of gifting to charity, to falling behind the United States and Australia.

A more substantial collation of statistics also released this month is the Global Observatory Catalogue of Indices.  This lists 30  open-source measures ranging from human rights to conflict,  from governance to gender,  with the  ranking of countries according to their score.  This is the first packaging in this way – which will be a helpful source of references for this blog.

The 30 indices are organised in six categories:

1. Conflict, Fragility, and Instability
2. Environment
3. Freedoms and Rights
4. Gender
5. Governance
6. Socio-Economics

The indices covered by the catalogue are:

Failed State Index by The Fund for Peace

Global Peace Index  by Institute for Economics and Peace

Peace and Conflict Instability Ledger by University of Maryland

Political Instability Index  by the Economist Intelligence Unit

State Fragility Index  by George Mason University

Country Indicators for Foreign Policy: Failed and Fragile States by Carleton University

Environmental Performance Index by Yale University Center for Environmental Law and Policy

Freedom in the World Index  by Freedom House

Press Freedom Survey by Freedom House

Worldwide Press Freedom Index  by Reporters without Borders

Cingranelli-Richards (CIRI) Human Rights Database by David L. Cingranelli (Binghamton University,  and David L. Richards, University of Memphis

Economic Freedom in the World Index by the Fraser Institute

Index of Economic Freedom by the Heritage Foundation and the Wall Street Journal

Gender Inequality Index  by the United Nations Development Programme

Global Gender Gap index  by the World Economic Forum

Corruption Perceptions Index  by Transparency International

Democracy Index  by the Economist Intelligence Unit

The World Bank Governance Indicators

Bertelsmann Transformation Index (Status Index) by Bertelsmann Stiftung

Bertelsmann Transformation Index (Management Index) by Bertelsmann Stiftung

Gallup Global Wellbeing (thriving) Index by  Gallup

Global Hunger Index   by International Food Policy Research Institute, Concern Worldwide

Human Development Index (HDI) by The United Nations Development Programme

Multidimensional Povert y Index  by The Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative  and UNDP Human Development Report Office

World Bank Ease of Doing Business Indicators  by World Bank International Bank for Reconstruction and Development

Global Competitiveness Index by World Economic Forum

Impunity Index on the Murder of Journalists by the Committee to Protect Journalists

Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA)/ International Development Association (IDA) Resource Allocation Index by the World Bank

In scrolling down the indices, New Zealand rates in the top five of many on which countries would wish to appear.