C-Suite Advisory

World’s Oldest (United States) And The Largest (India) Democracies Are Not Among The “Fully Democratic Countries” Ranking for 2017

So, it turns out the world’s oldest democracy (the United States; ranked 21) and the world’s largest democracy (India, ranked 42) are not among the “Fully Democratic Countries” list for 2017, according to The EIU’s annual Democracy Index – 2017. The report suggests that there are only nineteen fully democratic countries in the world.

What’s the big picture here?

No surprise there, Norway has again topped the list, followed by Iceland (No. 2), Sweden (No. 3), New Zealand (No. 4), and Denmark (No. 5).

India (ranked 42) has moved down from 32nd place last year and remains classified among “flawed democracies.” 57 other countries deemed as “flawed democracies.”

The index ranks 165 countries and two territories in five categories: electoral process and pluralism; civil liberties; the functioning of government; political participation; and political culture.

The list has been divided into 4 broad categories: full democracy, flawed democracy, hybrid regime, an authoritarian regime.

South Korea (ranked 20), the US, Italy, Japan, France, Israel, Singapore, Hong Kong, and others have been named among “flawed democracies.” Albania (ranked 77), Georgia, Ukraine, Bangladesh, Nepal, Turkey, Thailand, Pakistan, Iraq, and others have been named among “hybrid regime.”

Whereas, Côte d’Ivoire (ranked 116), Jordan, Venezuela, Kuwait, Myanmar, Egypt, Cuba, Russia, Qatar, and others have been named among “Authoritarian regime.”

Most Democratic Countries For 2017Least Democratic Countries For 2017
1. Norway
2. Iceland
3. Sweden
4. New Zealand
5. Denmark6. Ireland (tie)
7. Canada (tie)
8. Australia
9. Finland (tie)
10. Switzerland (tie)

11. The Netherlands
12. Luxembourg
13. Germany
14. The United Kingdom
15. Austria

16. Mauritius
17. Malta
18. Uruguay
19. Spain
20. South Korea

21. United States (tie)
22. Italy (tie)
23. Japan (tie)
24. Cape Verde (tie)
25. Costa Rica (tie)

1. North Korea (167th)
2. Syria
3. Chad
4. The central African Republic
5. The Democratic Republic of Congo6. Turkmenistan
7. Equatorial Guinea
8. Tajikistan
9. Saudi Arabia
10. Uzbekistan

11. Guinea-Bissau
12. Yemen
13. Sudan
14. Libya
15. Burundi

16. Laos
17. Eritrea
18. Iran
19. Afghanistan
20. Azerbaijan

21. The United Arab Emirates
22. Bahrain
23. Djibouti
24. Swaziland
25. Oman (143rd)

Most and least Democratic Countries in the world for 2017


Mindy Wright
Philadelphia native Mindy is passionate about creating lists about anything and everything. She recently moved to New York. Mindy is a frequent keynote speaker at prestigious conferences and universities in the United States and the United Kingdom. Her favorite Quote: "It's a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best, you very often get it!” Voracious reader. Writer + Editor + Philly girl.