Free Societies

A new global index to measure economic mentality

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Where GIEM scores are high, people do not expect government to play a major role in directing or regulating economic activity, or in redistributing income. The populations of these countries largely favor an institutional framework that prioritizes private initiative, free competition, and personal responsibility.

Among the 74 countries for which survey data is available, the top scoring countries are:

  1. New Zealand
  2. Czech Republic
  3. Sweden
  4. United States
  5. Denmark

The lowest scoring countries were Bosnia, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Montenegro, and Azerbaijan.

Atlas Network CEO Brad Lips commented, “It’s now well-established that Economic Freedom is associated with low poverty and other desirable social outcomes. The GIEM looks at whether Economic Freedom has popular support in given countries. We are excited to learn whether these measures prove useful in identifying where institutions of Economic Freedom may be at risk, because of declining support, and where popular support could enable greater free-market reforms.”

The findings of the GIEM have already been written about in Capital Matters for National Review by renowned economist, Dr. Steve Hanke: Economic Freedom—Hot or Not: A League Table.

The GIEM was developed by Carlos Newland (ESEADE University, Argentina), Pal Czegledi (University of Debrecen, Hungary) and Brad Lips (Atlas Network). It will be formally published by Atlas Network in 2021.

The preliminary findings, presented during Atlas Network’s Liberty Forum, are available for download as a PDF here.