The 2008 Commitment to Development Index: Components and Results

December 22, 2008

This CGD brief summarizes the results of the 2008 Commitment to Development Index (CDI), which ranks 22 of the world's richest countries on their dedication to policies that benefit the five billion people living in poorer nations. Moving beyond simple comparisons of foreign aid, the CDI ranks countries on seven themes: quantity and quality of foreign aid, openness to developing-country exports, policies that influence investment, migration policies, stewardship of the global environment, security policies and support for creation and dissemination of new technologies.

The Netherlands comes in first on the 2008 CDI on the strength of ample aid-giving, falling greenhouse gas emissions, and support for investment in developing countries. Close behind are three more big aid donors: Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. Australia, Canada, and New Zealand make it into the top half with a very different profile: generally low on aid but strong on trade, investment, migration, and security. Japan is second to last, ahead only of South Korea, a new addition to the CDI in 2008.

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