Democracy Ranking 2015: New Results

Dec 18, 2015, 02:00 ET from Democracy Ranking Association

VIENNA, December 18, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --

The Democracy Ranking 2015 releases the new results and data scores (

Democracy Ranking measures annually the quality of democracy in global comparison by referring to a broader conceptual understanding of democracy, which combines quality of democracy with sustainable development ( and

The Democracy Ranking 2015 compares 113 countries (democracies and semi-democracies) over a period of the years 2010-2011 and 2013-2014 (using more than 40 indicators and scales ranging from 1-100). Quality of democracy has progressed worldwide, on average 0.9 score points per country. In 91 countries an increase of quality of democracy was measured, but in 22 countries also a decrease was observed. Compared with previous democracy rankings, the overall global increase of democracy has slowed down, implying that the general conditions for democracy are now under a greater challenge. For democracies it becomes increasingly difficult to achieve a simultaneous and progressive win-win situation in political, social, economic and ecological development (at the same time).

The top 10 countries in 2013-2014 are: Norway, Switzerland, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany, New Zealand, Ireland, and Belgium. The Nordic countries and Switzerland rank top in world comparison.

The United States ranks at position 16, but improved its scoring only by 0.045 points. This is why the U.S. has approached almost a zero-growth in further advancement of its quality of democracy for the moment, with gains in several dimensions, but smaller losses in politics and gender equality.

Progress of quality of democracy consolidated by tendency in the member countries of the European Union, however declined in several EU countries: Croatia (-0.2 score points), Hungary (-0.5), Cyprus (-1.4), Spain (-1.4), and Greece (-2.7). In Hungary, the conditions of political rights, civil liberties and freedom of press have worsened.

South America realized levels of quality of democracy comparable to Eastern-Central and Southern Europe. Hong Kong (SAR, China) ranks higher on quality of democracy in Asia, but is coming under pressure by mainland China.

The highest relative democracy progress (Democracy Improvement Ranking 2015) was achieved in: Tunisia (+11.0 score points), Cote d'Ivoire (+8.3), Senegal (+4.6), Nepal (+4.1), Georgia (+3.9), Niger (+3.8), Madagascar (+3.8), France (+3.4), Zambia (+3.0), Colombia (+2.8), and Malawi (+2.7). Of the "Arab Spring" countries, prospects for democracy are clearly the best in Tunisia. Tunisia stabilized its path toward more democracy. Tunisia represents a role model for further democratization in the Arab world. A dynamic momentum of relative progress of quality of democracy has been achieved particularly by some countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, where improvements are manifest in development of democracy and society, but also in development of the economy.

In Russia and China, the political systems have become less liberal, but there further economic progress was realized. Does this create an "authoritarian challenge" for democracy?

The following countries qualify as a positive role model in advances in democracy in their regional contexts: Tunisia, Serbia, Mongolia, and Hong Kong.

Development aid also should take developments in further democratization into account.

Earlier comprehensive results of the previous Democracy Ranking 2013 are published in: Campbell, David F. J. / Thorsten D. Barth / Paul Pölzlbauer / Georg Pölzlbauer (2015). Democracy Ranking (Edition 2014). Vienna: Democracy Ranking (Books on Demand) (


Christa Pölzlbauer, Dr. (Executive Director):

David F. J. Campbell, Dozent Dr. (Academic Director):, Cell: +43-699-10450856       

Sándor Hasenöhrl (Founder of the Democracy Ranking):


SOURCE Democracy Ranking Association