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World Governance Assessment

Hero image description: Vote in 2006 Zambia elections poster Image credit:Linda Shaffer Bollert, World Resources Institute Image license:Creative Commons

The quality of governance has become an issue of increasing concern in countries around the world, both developed and developing. While the evidence suggests governance matters for development, there is less understanding regarding what aspects matter most and how to improve governance. The main problem is the lack of reliable, valid and comparable data on key governance issues. This has left many unanswered questions regarding when, why and how governance makes a difference to the way countries develop. Current indicators also provide inadequate measures for assessing changes and informing strategies to improve governance. The WGA is a global, collaborative effort to improve the assessment and analysis of governance.

WGA Phase 1 (2000-2002) was a pilot study in 16 countries to gauge perceptions of governance in 6 arenas. Phase 2 (2005-2007) used an improved methodology and surveyed perceptions in 10 countries.


Julius Court, Marta Foresti, Verena Fritz, Goran Hyden and Kenneth Mease