CLA News / Call for Survey Respondents: Participation in the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index is now open


Call for Survey Respondents: Participation in the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index is now open

Last year, the World Justice Project (WJP) and the Commonwealth Lawyers Association signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate in support of the rule of law. As of 6th February, CLA members have the opportunity to contribute to this effort directly by participating as expert respondents in the WJP Rule of Law Index®.

What is the WJP Rule of Law Index?

The WJP Rule of Law Index is the world’s leading comprehensive measurement of the rule of law, providing a portrait of the rule of law in 142 countries (including 42 Commonwealth members), with scores and rankings based on eight factors: Constraints on Government Powers, Absence of Corruption, Open Government, Fundamental Rights, Order and Security, Regulatory Enforcement, Civil Justice, and Criminal Justice.

The Index is designed to offer a reliable and independent data source for policy makers, businesses, NGOs, and other constituencies to assess a country’s adherence to the rule of law as perceived and experienced by the average person, identify a country’s strengths and weaknesses in comparison to similarly situated countries, and track changes over time.

The WJP publishes this Index every year to present the public with a diagnostic tool that can help detect strengths and weaknesses within each country or jurisdiction, and encourage policy choices, guide program development, and inform research to strengthen the rule of law within and across these countries.

How is the Index calculated?

The Index methodology relies on two main sources of data: a General Population Poll (GPP) administered to the public and Qualified Respondents’ Questionnaires (QRQs) administered to in-country experts and legal practitioners. These two data sources capture the experiences and perceptions of ordinary citizens and in-country professionals concerning the performance of the state and its agents and the actual operation of the legal framework in their country or jurisdiction.

By triangulating information across data sources and types of questions, the Index’s measurements of the rule of law reflect a variety of perspectives, which helps reduce possible bias that might be introduced by any other particular data collection method. Additionally, the data used in each report undergoes several stages of validation and statistical testing to provide an additional layer of analysis and to identify possible mistakes or inconsistencies within the data.

How can CLA members help with the Index?

Every year, the WJP recruits thousands of in-country practitioners, experts, and academics to complete Qualified Respondents’ Questionnaires (QRQs) in the following four disciplines: 1) Civil and Commercial Law; 2) Constitutional Law, Civil Liberties, and Criminal Law; 3) Labor Law; and 4) Public Health. These questionnaires gather timely information on a range of topics – such as the efficacy of courts, the strength of regulatory enforcement, and the reliability of accountability mechanisms – from practitioners who frequently interact with state institutions.

While perceptions of the general public take longer to change, our experts interact with judicial and government institutions on a daily basis and are more in tune with the year-to-year changes in a country or jurisdiction’s rule of law performance. As such, our annual QRQ surveys help keep Index scores up to date on factors which tend to involve more specialized knowledge of certain processes, actors, and circumstances.

CLA members are eligible and encouraged to participate! If you are interested, please sign up here. The surveys launched on Tuesday, 6th February and will be available online through May of this year.

Where can I learn more?

Those interested in learning more about participation in the Index can visit the WJP’s Frequently Asked Questions page here. Additionally, the WJP’s research team is available to respond to questions and comments directly via email at: