Commitment to Development Index 2016: How Development-Friendly Are Your Country’s Policies? – Podcast with Owen Barder

January 18, 2017

Kudos to Finland in 2016 for ascending to the top spot in CGD’s annual Commitment to Development Index, our ranking of how a country’s policies help or hinder development. Other countries of note this year include France, New Zealand and Austria. We just published the latest rankings, and I discuss them, their implications, and the political landscape that could affect them in our latest CGD Podcast with Owen Barder, senior fellow and director of CGD Europe, which produces the Index.

Now in its 14th year, we derive the CDI rankings by crunching the numbers from millions of data points across seven policy areas: aid, trade, migration, finance, security, technology and environment. The result is a measure of which country has the most development-friendly policies. It shows where countries do well and how they can learn from each other to do better.

We want to show how development can be a race to the top. Most of the policies that score well on the index require some sort of international cooperation—so what does the CDI tell us about the apparent retreat of globalism across the political landscape? Take a listen to the podcast to find out! And please also check out the interactive CDI rankings to see where each country stands and how they could improve. 


CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.