LexisNexis Legal & Professional today launches an interactive online tool that shows how the rule of law is measured and why it’s important. This first-of-its-kind data tool, the LexisNexis Rule of Law Impact Tracker, quantifies the relationship between rule of law and social and economic development.
According to the United Nations, approximately 4 billion people live outside of the umbrella protection of the rule of law. There is growing recognition by lawyers, businesspeople, governments, academics, NGOs and citizens that rule of law is a cornerstone for sustainable global development. The Rule of Law Impact Tracker is a unique way for users to see, in numbers, the impact of advancement of the rule of law.
“The rule of law provides the foundation for how we live, the freedoms we have, and the degree of security that we enjoy. International companies also know that strong rule of law is crucial for doing business. Our analysis quantifies the transformational impact which rule of law has on sustainable social and economic development, as well as what’s possible if we work together to affect change,” said Mike Walsh, CEO of LexisNexis Legal & Professional.
LexisNexis’ analysis shows that a country’s rule of law ‘score’ on the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index closely correlates to five important indicators of economic and social development: wealth (GDP per capita); child mortality; homicide rates; corruption; and life expectancy. The Rule of Law Impact Tracker enables users to calculate the effects that improvements in the rule of law mean score would have on each of these indicators.
Based upon the statistical correlations among the Rule of Law Index and measures of economic and societal health such as GDP per capita, child mortality, homicide rates, levels of corruption and life expectancy, we estimate that over the next decade, a 10% increase in the rule of law mean score would result in:
• GDP per capita going up by about $7,000 per person;
• Child mortality rates declining from 24 to 16 per 1,000;
• Crime going down by more than 30%;
• Average life expectancy increasing by more than two years.
The analysis uses the best available data from the World Bank, Transparency International and the World Justice Project. The World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index documents countries’ adherence to 44 rule of law indicators in categories including Absence of Corruption, Fundamental Rights, Civil Justice and Criminal Justice. Over 100,000 citizens and experts have been interviewed and 102 countries indexed to date. In 2015, Denmark was the highest ranking country on the Index, scoring 87%. Venezuela ranked lowest, with a score of 32%. The US ranks 19th, scoring 73% and the UK ranks 12th with a score of 78%.
The Rule of Law Impact Tracker is a part of the company’s efforts in support of the Business for the Rule of Law (B4ROL) initiative, which was launched by the United Nations Global Compact last year. The B4ROL Framework offers a guide for businesses around the world in taking proactive, voluntary actions to support the rule of law in their everyday operations and relationships as a complement to respecting the rule of law.
LexisNexis Rule of Law Impact Tracker Methodology
In modelling the impact of the Rule of Law data on GDP and societal measures we took the following steps. The first was to compile a database of Rule of Law scores, and societal measures, for each country. We did this by taking the World Justice Project data, and combining it with other data sources such as the World Bank databank. It was not possible to get complete data-sets for each country, but at least 87 countries are represented in each analysis. The second step was to test whether there was a statistically significant relationship between the Rule of Law measure and the societal measure we were testing. This was done via a simple correlation test (Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient), and then by applying a line of best fit (typically linear or exponential regression). Please note that given some of the scales (such as GDP) skewed towards large values, it was sometimes necessary to use logarithmic scales. The resultant regression models were then used to provide a simple guide to how average country scores for GDP per capita, homicides, child mortality and average life expectancy, change for each percentage point increase (or decrease) in the Rule of Law index.
About LexisNexis Legal & Professional
LexisNexis Legal & Professional (lexisnexis.com) is a leading global provider of content and technology solutions that enable professionals in legal, corporate, tax, government, academic and non-profit organisations to make informed decisions and achieve better business outcomes. As a digital pioneer, the company was the first to bring legal and business information online with its Lexis® and Nexis® services. Today, LexisNexis Legal & Professional harnesses leading-edge technology and world-class content to help professionals work in faster, easier and more effective ways. Through close collaboration with its customers, the company ensures organisations can leverage its solutions to reduce risk, improve productivity, increase profitability and grow their business. LexisNexis Legal & Professional, which serves customers in more than 175 countries with 10,000 employees worldwide, is part of RELX Group plc, a world-leading provider of information and analytics for professional and business customers across industries.
Contact: Rebecca Fitchett - Associate Partner Finsbury
P: +44(0)20 7251 3801 - E: rebecca.fitchett[.]finsbury.com.