Scandinavian countries are the most advanced countries in Open Government, with Sweden ranking first, according to the World Justice Project Open Government Index 2015. Norway ranked 3rd, ahead of Denmark (4th) and Finland (6th).
The WJP Open Government Index measures government openness based on the perception and experience of the general public and worldwide experts. It provides rankings for four elements: publicized laws and government data, right to information, civic participation and complaint mechanisms. It also provides scores, ranging from 0 to 1 (1 being the highest level of openness).
With an average score of 0.81, Sweden performed well in the right to information and civic participation dimensions (0.86 and 0.90 respectively). However, it underperformed on publicized laws and government data, ranking 11th in this area (0.66).
The Netherlands ranks 5th and the UK 8th, while outside Europe New Zealand ranks 2nd and Canada 7th, with Australia (9th) and Republic of Korea (10th) rounding up the Top 10. The US, one of the pioneers in Open Government, ranks 11th in the index – ahead of Austria (13th), Estonia (14th), Germany (15th) and Belgium (16th). France is number 17 in the world.
OGP countries obtained higher ranks
Among other interesting conclusions, the WJP Open Government Index showed a correlation between Open Government Partnership (OGP) countries and non OGP countries. “OGP countries attain higher Open Government scores than non-member countries for all levels of development”, the report stated. Moreover, “OGP countries in their second Action Plan cycle also perform better than countries in their first Action Plan cycle”. For example, Sweden (number 1) has already published its second Action Plan whereas France, which is still working on its first Action Plan, ranks 17th in the index. The OGP members in their second Action Plan obtained a higher ranking in the WJP index (62 out the 102 countries).