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Zhi Finance » What is the Index of Political Freedom?

What is the Index of Political Freedom?

In his book “Liberal Development”, Amartya Sen argues that freedom is at the center of the development process, that freedom and people’s realistic subjective initiative are the main driving forces of development, and that there is a causal relationship between freedom and development. Because the process of development is evaluated in terms of the freedom that people increase, development is dependent on people’s free initiative.

Anthropologist Hacker also repeatedly emphasized the importance of political freedom in his book Reflections on Human Development in 1995, and proposed a method for measuring political freedom, the Political Freedom Index. According to Hacker, human beings are both the means and the end of development. Because people are accustomed to discussing human development in terms of abstract numbers, human beings themselves are forgotten in many development plans. Freedom and human rights are important aspects of human development.

Hacker’s political freedom index can be grouped into four groups: political participation, legal security, freedom of expression and non-discrimination.

Political participation refers to the extent to which citizens participate in and influence national and regional decision-making. Political participation measures include: one-party or multi-party electoral system, broad electoral rights, regulation and fairness of elections, freedom of party affiliation, right to peaceful assembly, decentralized decision-making, and continuity and sustainability of the political system.

Legal safeguards, which refer to the availability of regulations and procedures to protect the existence, freedom, and security of individuals. Its measures include the absence of arbitrary abduction, torture or maltreatment, killings, the existence of political opponents, the absence of police brutality, fair and open verdicts, independent, impartial, and competent courts, the presumption of innocence until proven guilty, the absence of executive interference in the law, and equality before the law.

Freedom of speech means free access to information and expression of opinions and views on the basis of not interfering with national security, public order and public health or respecting the rights and interests of others. Freedom of expression measurement indicators include: no restrictions on public and private speech, no censorship and restrictions on the news media, independent and autonomous news media, and protection of freedom of expression.

Non-discrimination means no discrimination and loss of opportunities based on differences in gender, religion, language, etc. Indicators of non-discrimination measures include: non-discrimination based on differences in gender, religion, race, country or social system, income, language, wealth, etc.

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