Where we have been, and where we are now? Peace in 2018!
The Institute for Economics and Peace and the Knowledge Platform for Security & Rule of Law launched the Global Peace Index (GPI) 2018 at the Hague Humanity Hub on 13 July, 2018. Steve Killelea, the Founder and Executive Chairman of the Institute for Economics and Peace, presented the findings of the 12th edition of the GPI.
The GPI is one of the world's leading measures of global peacefulness. It ranks 163 countries annually, using 23 indicators in the following categories:
- 6 measures of ongoing and domestic conflict
- 10 measures of safety and security
- 7 measures of militarization
"This report presents the most comprehensive data-driven analysis to-date on trends in peace, its economic value, and how to develop peaceful societies." (GPI, 2018)
The report details, among others, the 5 most and least peaceful countries in the world; the global economic impact of violence; the key GPI trends from 2008 – 2018; the five largest improvements and deteriorations by indicators; trends in positive peace; and the key pillars of positive peace.
The key positive findings for 2018 are as follows:
1. Sub-Saharan Africa was home to four of the five largest improvements in peacefulness
2. Military expenditure compared to country GDP has been steadily falling in more countries than increasing
3. Countries that improved in peace over the last decade had seven times higher GDP growth rates
4. Iceland, New Zealand, Austria, Portugal and Denmark are the most peaceful countries in the world
At the same time, the negative trends that have been identified are:
1. 92 countries deteriorated [in peacefulness] whilst 71 countries improved between 2016 and 2017
2. Battle deaths have risen steadily over the last 10 years, increasing by 264%
3. Both Europe and North America became less peaceful, with 23/36 countries in Europe deteriorating last year
4. Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Iraq and Somalia are the least peaceful countries in the world
With 2019 in sight, GPPAC will continue to contribute to peacebuilding and conflict prevention by connecting in-country actors, influencing relevant policies and advocating best practices. Our approach rests on (1) placing people, and human security, at the centre of analysis (2) building capabilities and mechanisms that are able to sustain peace and prevent violent conflict on a local, national and international level and (3) strengthening civil society's role, particularly those of youths and women, in conflict prevention and peacebuilding.