Evaluating Governance Indexes : Critical and Less Critical Questions
Recent years have seen a proliferation of `composite indicators´ or `indexes´ of governance. Such measures can be useful tools for analysing governance, making public policy, building scientific knowledge, and even influencing ruling elites, but some are better tools than others and some are better suited to certain purposes than others. This paper provides a framework of ten questions to help users and producers of governance indexes to evaluate them and consider key components of index design. In reviewing these ten questions–only six of which, it argues, are critical–the paper offers examples from some of the best known measures of governance and related topics. It advances two broad arguments: First, more attention should be paid to the fundamentals of social science methodology, i.e., questions about concept formation, content validity, reliability, replicability, robustness, and the relevance of particular measures to underlying research questions. Second, less attention should be paid to some other issues commonly highlighted in the literature on governance measurement, i.e., questions about descriptive complexity, theoretical fit, the precision of estimates, and correct weighting. The paper builds upon a thorough review of the literature and the author´s three years of research in practice as co-author of a well-known governance index.
|Date of creation:||2013|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Katajanokanlaituri 6B, 00160 Helsinki|
Web page: http://www.wider.unu.edu/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- repec:unu:wpaper:wp2012-30 is not listed on IDEAS
- Gisselquist, Rachel M., 2012. "Good Governance as a Concept, and Why This Matters for Development Policy," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Elizabeth Stanton, 2007. "The Human Development Index: A History," Working Papers wp127, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
- Gingerich, Daniel W., 2013. "Governance Indicators and the Level of Analysis Problem: Empirical Findings from South America," British Journal of Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 43(03), pages 505-540, July.
- Andrea Saltelli, 2007. "Composite Indicators between Analysis and Advocacy," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 81(1), pages 65-77, March.
- Merilee S. Grindle, 2007. "Good Enough Governance Revisited," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 25(5), pages 533-574, 09.
- Harttgen, Kenneth & Klasen, Stephan, 2012.
"A Household-Based Human Development Index,"
Elsevier, vol. 40(5), pages 878-899.
- Kenneth Harttgen & Stephan Klasen, 2010. "A Household-Based Human Development Index," Human Development Research Papers (2009 to present) HDRP-2010-22, Human Development Report Office (HDRO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
- Harttgen, Kenneth & Klasen, Stephan, 2010. "A household-based Human Development Index," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Hannover 2010 30, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
- Martin Knoll & Petra Zloczysti, 2011.
"The Good Governance Indicators of the Millennium Challenge Account: How Many Dimensions Are Really Being Measured?,"
Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin
1148, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
- Knoll, Martin & Zloczysti, Petra, 2012. "The Good Governance Indicators of the Millennium Challenge Account: How Many Dimensions are Really Being Measured?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(5), pages 900-915.
- Knoll, Martin & Zloczysti, Petra, 2011. "The Good Governance Indicators of the Millennium Challenge Account: How many dimensions are really being measured," Discussion Papers 2011/2, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
- Williams, Andrew, 2009. "On the release of information by governments: Causes and consequences," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1), pages 124-138, May.
- Matt Andrews & Roger Hay & Jerrett Myers, 2010. "Can Governance Indicators Make Sense? Towards a New Approach to Sector-Specific Measures of Governance," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(4), pages 391-410.
- M. Saisana & A. Saltelli & S. Tarantola, 2005. "Uncertainty and sensitivity analysis techniques as tools for the quality assessment of composite indicators," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 168(2), pages 307-323.
- Kaufmann, Daniel & Kraay, Aart & Zoido-Lobaton, Pablo, 1999. "Aggregating governance indicators," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2195, The World Bank.
- Matt Andrews, 2008. "The Good Governance Agenda: Beyond Indicators without Theory," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(4), pages 379-407.
- Paolo Paruolo & Michaela Saisana & Andrea Saltelli, 2013. "Ratings and rankings: voodoo or science?," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 176(3), pages 609-634, 06.
- Resnick, Danielle & Birner, Regina, 2006. "Does good governance contribute to pro-poor growth?: a review of the evidence from cross-country studies," DSGD discussion papers 30, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Round, Jeffery I., 2012. "Aid and Investment in Statistics for Africa," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Charles P. Oman & Christiane Arndt, 2010. "Measuring Governance," OECD Development Centre Policy Briefs 39, OECD Publishing.
- Farhad Noorbakhsh, 1998. "The human development index: some technical issues and alternative indices," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 10(5), pages 589-605.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:wp2013-068. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bruck Tadesse)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.