According to the latest edition of the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index, more countries declined than improved in overall rule of law performance for the third year in a row, continuing a negative slide toward weakening and stagnating rule of law around the world. The majority of countries showing deteriorating rule of law in the 2020 Index also declined in the previous year, demonstrating a persistent downward trend.  This was particularly pronounced in the Index factor measuring Constraints on Government Powers. The declines were widespread and seen in all corners of the world. In every region, a majority of countries slipped backward or remained unchanged in their overall rule of law performance since the 2019 WJP Rule of Law Index. 

In Europe and Central Asia, the largest one-year score declines in overall performance were the United Kingdom, Romania, Russia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The countries that improved the most Moldova, Uzbekistan, Slovenia, and Spain. Country profiles depicting one- and five-year trends for each of the eight factors measured in the Index are available at WJP’s Rule of Law Index data portal here.

The WJP Rule of Law Index is the world’s leading source for the original, independent data on the rule of law Now covering 128 countries and jurisdictions, the Index relies on more than 130,000 household surveys and 4,000 legal practitioner and expert surveys to measure how the rule of law is experienced and perceived worldwide. The Index provides current and reliable information to policy makers, civil society organizations, academics, citizens, and legal professionals, among others and is intended to encourage policy reforms, guide program development, and inform research to strengthen the rule of law.