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January 26, 2020

Did TI use old data for its CPI 2019 report?

Top Story

January 26, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Did Transparency International use old data for its Corruption Perception Index (CPI) 2019 report as being interpreted? Answer is in negative. Detailed reading of the report sifts facts from fictions as it establishes the fact that all the eight agencies relevant to Pakistan used updated data, not that of previous years.

A confusion was created on social media that the Transparency International (TI) has used old data of some agencies/ survey sources for it CPI 2019 report. The national and social media has reported that the rating of six survey sources or agencies remained unchanged whereas only two agencies rated Pakistan negative in CPI 2019 as compared to 2018. However, a thorough research conducted by The News proves that all the eight relevant agencies used updated dataset of surveys for the CPI 2019 report. Whereas, the official report and the comparison of 2018 and 2019 dataset also shows that five agencies not two gave negative rating to Pakistan and three agencies have given positive scores.

The CPI 2019 report’s full source description provides detailed information about the dataset and its availability. The full source description of CPI 2019 also highlights the time period of the surveys. The eight agencies that are relevant for the assessment of Pakistan have used updated data and no agency has used 2015 and 2016 dataset for this purpose. Some agencies have carried out their surveys as late as October 2019. Whereas some of the agencies’ survey for data collection was carried out in 2018, reveals the official report.

The CPI 2019 report comprises 13 agencies or survey sources out of which eight were relevant for the assessment of Pakistan. Out of these eight survey sources, five gave their negative assessment for Pakistan whereas three gave positive scores, including World Bank. These five agencies which gave negative scores to Pakistan include Bertelsmann Foundation’s Transformation Index, Global Insight Country Risk Ratings, Varieties of Democracy, World Economic Forum and World Justice Project Rule of Law Index.

Time period of the surveys/data availability of agencies: It was propagated that the dataset used for the CPI 2019 was from previous years. As some journalists claimed that a few survey sources used 2015, 2016 and 2017 data for the CPI 2019. Below is the timeline of the surveys conducted by the agencies/ survey sources, reveals the full source description of CPI 2019 report.

Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index: There was some confusion among journalists as some tend to believe that old data of Bertelsmann Stiftung’s Transformation Index (BTI) was used for the CPI 2019. However, contrary to the facts, the data referred by some journalists was of BTI 2018 country report which covered the period from February 2015 to January 2017.

For the CPI 2019, the full source description has clearly mentioned that BTI country report is published after every two years. Hence, after 2018 the report now will be published in 2020 which means if the 2018 report had covered the time period from February 2015 to January 2017 then the 2020 report will cover the time period from February 2017 to January 2019. According to CPI 2019 full source description, the data for the CPI 2019 was kindly provided by the Bertelsmann Stiftung ahead of the publication of the BTI 2020report, which will be launched in the first half of 2020.

World Justice Project Rule of Law Index: As per the full source description of CPI 2019, the data for computing this index was collected between May and November 2018 via a survey of more than 3,800 experts. The data aggregated data for the index is publicly available online under data.worldjusticeproject.org. For CPI calculations, however, the disaggregated expert survey data is provided exclusively for Transparency International by the WJP.

There was a confusion among some journalists who claimed that the CPI 2019 included the dataset of 2017 survey carried out by World Justice Project. However, the facts are contrary as there were two types of surveys carried out by WJP. One is face to face survey and the other is expert survey which was carried out between May and November 2018. The full source description of CPI 2019 has clearly mentioned that only the scores provided by the experts were considered for the CPI calculations.

Economist Intelligence Unit Country Risk Service: The full source description of CPI 2019 shows that country risk assessments have been produced by the EIU since the early 1980s. Updated summaries are provided monthly for 100 countries and quarterly for the rest. The CPI draws on risk rating data available as of October2019.

Global Insights Business Conditions and Risk Indicators: The data for CPI 2019 from IHS Global Insight was accessed through the World Bank, World Governance Indicators portal, as IHS Global Insight stopped providing data to Transparency International in 2015.

The PRS Group International Country Risk Guide 2019: According to full source description of CPI 2019, the CPI2019 data is an aggregate of quarterly assessments covering the period of September 2018 to August 2019.

World Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment: The ratings process typically starts in the autumn and is concluded in the spring of the following year. The scores disclosed in July 2019 covers 2018 country performance.

World Economic Forum Executive Opinion Survey: The 2019 edition of the survey captured the views of 12,987 business executives in 139 economies between January and April 2019.Three additional countries were surveyed in 2019 compared to the previous edition (Barbados, Gabon, Madagascar) and two countries are not covered this year (Liberia and Sierra Leone).

Varieties of Democracy Project: As per the full source description of CPI 2019, 179 countries were scored for the year 2018 in the 2019 update of the index used for the CPI calculation.

Survey Sources or agencies whose dataset used for Pakistan: The eight relevant agencies or survey sources whose input has been used for the CPI 2019 for Pakistan include i) Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index2020, ii) Economist Intelligence Unit Country Risk Service2019, iii) Global Insight Country Risk Ratings 2018, iv) The PRS Group International Country Risk Guide2019, v) World Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment 2018, vi) World Economic Forum Executive Opinion Survey2019, vii) World Justice Project Rule of Law Index Expert Survey2019 and viii) Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) 2019.

Rating/Scores of survey sources for Pakistan: The comparison of the scores of these eight agencies for Pakistan proves that five out of eight agencies have given negative scores in their current assessment used in the CPI 2019 as compared to 2018. Whereas, three agencies have given positive ratings/scores in their latest assessment.

Agencies which gave negative scores:

Below are the five agencies which gave negative scores to Pakistan in the CPI 2019. Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index: In 2018, the Bertelsmann Stiftung Transformation Index gave 25 scores to Pakistan. However, the CPI 2019 has shown a huge decline in country’s score as it has dropped to 20.88.

Global Insight Country Risk Ratings: The Global Insight Country Risk Rating gave 35 scores in 2018 which now has reduced to 34.50. This shows Pakistan’s rating declined by 0.50 in CPI 2019.

Varieties of Democracy: Pakistan was given 27 scores by Varieties of Democracy in 2018 which now has reduced to 26.81 in CPI 2019.

World Economic Forum Executive Opinion Survey: Pakistan was given 43 points by World Economic Forum Executive Opinion Survey in 2018. However, the country’s rating has declined to 42.75 in 2019.

World Justice Project Rule of Law Index Expert Survey: In 2018 Pakistan was given 27 points by World Justice Project Rule of Law Index Expert Survey. However, the agency has reduced Pakistan’s score from 27 to 26.60 in CPI 2019.

Below are the three agencies which gave positive scores to Pakistan in CPI 2019: Economist Intelligence Unit Country Risk Service. In 2018, Pakistan secured 37 points by Economist Intelligence Unit Country Risk Service. This year the agency has given positive scores and rated Pakistan with 37.26 scores in CPI 2019.

The PRS Group International Country Risk Guide: The PRS Group International Country Risk Guide gave Pakistan 32 scores in 2018 which now has increased to 32.42 in CPI 2019.

World Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment: Pakistan has improved its scores in the assessment of World Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment as compared to 2018. In the CPI 2019, Pakistan scored 35.11, whereas, last year the country’s score was 35 points.