International Indices as Models for the Rule of Law Scoreboard of the European Union: Methodological Issues
18 Pages Posted: 20 Sep 2017
Date Written: September 5, 2017
Since the early 2010s, and especially since the 10 June 2015 resolution of the European Parliament, there has been a growing interest in monitoring and measuring the rule of law in the Member States of the EU. Going beyond the available measurement tools in Europe, such as the EU Justice Scoreboard, we discuss the lessons taught by the construction of international indices on the rule of law. In addition to the traditional toolbox of a lawyer, we have to turn to other methods of social sciences and statistics in order to quantify the state of, as well as the changes and trends in the rule of law. The methodology regarding this topic has an extensive literature and we can enumerate manifold indices measuring the rule of law for example from Europe or from the United States (e.g. Freedom House, Bertelsmann Stiftung, World Bank, World Justice Project) The present paper is an introduction to the methodology in which we focus on the terminology, the collection and aggregation of data, the interpretation of the results and the comparison within the countries and over time, by these indices as possible precursors of a future EU scoreboard on the rule of law.
Keywords: European Scoreboard of Rule of Law, international indices, Freedom in the World, Bertelsmann Transformation Index, Worldwide Governance Indicators, World Justice Project, Rule of Law Index, conceptualisation, law & statistics, measuring legal systems, empirical methodology
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