Foreign Policy’s Failed State Index

Great resource from Foreign Policy on failed states, and the extent to which states are ‘failed’.  On the one hand, this is an index made up of some good and probably some less good – or at best subjective – numbers.  Therefore it’s of limited scientific value, in the sense that we could use it to make some impirical judgements.  However, it does a useful job of identifying key categories for considering whether states are failed or not.  The categories include ‘Delegitimization of the State’ which I intend to investigate further; rather than describing it as an absolute number, or value (such as legitimacy, relative legitimacy, or legitimacy perception) it describes it as a process.  Curious.

One other interesting aspect is the extent to which “State Failure” as a metric can be inverted and measured as “State Success”.  On that measure, Ireland is more successful (or “less failed”) than the UK, France or the USA.  Which is kind of fun…just don’t tell the IMF, because they think they own the place 😀

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