Image: Institute for Economics & Peace.
The Institute for Economics and Peace have published their 2018 Global Peace Index.
The annual report, which measures peace in 163 countries using 23 indicators, shows a gradual decline in peace over 2017-18, but the detailled picture is more complicated with improvements in some aspects of epace and deteriorations in others. You can read the full report and view an interactive map online.
The report’s authors note:
“The 2018 GPI reveals a world in which the tensions, conflicts, and crises that emerged in the past decade remain unresolved, especially in the Middle East, resulting in a gradual, sustained fall in peaceful1ness.”
Iceland, New Zealand, Austria, Portugal and Denmark remain the top five most peaceful countries in the world, whilst unsurprisingly, Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Iraq and Somalia are the least peaceful.
South America experienced the worst decline in peace, largely due to a rise in political violence, authoritarianism and terrorism. Meanwhile parts of Sub-Saharan Africa experienced the biggest improvements in peace, with peaceful elections in Gambia and Liberia bringing hope.
Closer to home, Europe remians the most peaceful region in the index, but has gradually become less peaceful over the past decade. Particularly noticable is that ‘Acceptance of the Rights of Others’ has been deteriorating in Europe and North America. The UK remains stuck in the ‘peaceful, but not very peaceful’ category due to militarisation, arms exports and nuclear weapons; and slumped to 57th place this year due to terrorism and involvement in external conflicts.
Of course, peace isn’t something we can easily quantify, and there are different ways of thinking about peace & justice. If you’re interested in these questions, or want some ideas for things you can do to make the world a more peaceful place, pop into Peace Hub for a friendly chat.