The Rule of Law Index is a new quantitative assessment tool designed by the World Justice Project to measure the extent to which countries around the world adhere to the rule of law. The Index provides detailed information regarding a variety of dimensions of the rule of law, which enables policymakers and other users to assess a nation’s adherence to the rule of law in practice, identify a nation’s strengths and weaknesses in comparison to similarly situated countries, and track changes over time.
The greatest weakness in Western Europe and North America appears to be related to the accessibility of the civil justice system. In the area of access to legal counsel, for instance, the United States ranks 20th, while Sweden ranks 17th. These are areas that require attention from both policy makers and civil society to ensure that all people, including marginalized groups, are able to benefit from the civil justice system.