The CIVICUS Monitor combines data from a range of sources. Through a series of standard calculations and verification checks, we produce a guiding score for each country that we use to assign ratings on the state of civic space. Civic space is defined as the respect in law and practice for the freedoms of association, peaceful assembly and expression. Built into each of the three core freedoms is the understanding that a state has a duty to protect civil society, and must go beyond simply refraining from interfering in citizens' enjoyment of their rights.
Through a structured approach, we ensure that our treatment of data is transparent and that consistency is achieved in the analysis of different countries. Data generated by local civil society influences the ratings more strongly than data from other sources and this is reflected in the weight that we give to different data sets. In addition, all research contributing to CIVICUS Monitor ratings is reviewed by an independent panel of civil society experts.
The cornerstone of the CIVICUS Monitor methodology is the combination of several independent sources of data on civic space. Because civic space is influenced by complex economic, social and political processes, the CIVICUS Monitor draws upon a number of quantitative and qualitative data for its analysis and ratings. The intention is to mitigate sampling errors and data bias and prevent over-reliance on any particular data set.
CIVICUS will always reflect on the data generated by the CIVICUS Monitor and ensure that its methodology includes the latest thinking and data sources on civic space. As part of the development process of the CIVICUS Monitor, we have updated the methodology twice since 2018. The CIVICUS Monitor methodology was designed to include a multiplicity of sources that are used to get to the final ratings. This was intentionally done to reduce over-reliance on any particular data source and to enhance the stability and sustainability of the CIVICUS Monitor ratings in the face of changes. Therefore, despite the methodological improvements, the rating information is still comparable over time and between countries.
Read our detailed methodology paper here.