SUB-INDEX: PERSONAL FREEDOM
When citizens enjoy freedom of expression, belief, and organisation, as well as personal autonomy in a society welcoming of diversity, their country experiences higher levels of income and wellbeing. The Personal Freedom sub-index measures countries’ performance in two areas: individual freedom and social tolerance. As illustrated in the chart on the right, the variables in the sub-index are categorised according to these areas.
The Personal Freedom sub-index captures the effects of freedom of choice, expression, movement, and belief, on a country’s per capita GDP and the subjective wellbeing of its citizens. It also assesses how levels of tolerance of ethnic minorities and immigrants impact countries’ economic growth and citizens’ life satisfaction. Societies that foster strong civil rights and freedoms have been shown to enjoy increases in levels of satisfaction among their citizens. When citizens’ personal liberties are protected, a country benefits from higher levels of national income.