Thought U.S. Police Departments Were the Best? WISPI Says Otherwise!

The inaugural World Internal Security and Police Index (WISPI), which “aims to measure the ability of the security apparatus within a country to respond to internal security challenges, both now and in the future,” was recently released by the International Police Science Association (IPSA).  The report scores 127 countries on their ability to address internal security issues based on 16 indicators, such as number of police (Police) or military personnel (Armed Forces) per 100,000 citizens and percent of respondents who paid a bribe to a police officer in the past year (Bribe Payments to Police), across four unique domains to include ‘Capacity’ and ‘Legitimacy’.

Below are some highlights taken from the report:

  • Singapore performed best on the Index, followed by Finland, and then Denmark. There were only four non-European countries in the top 20.
  • Nigeria performed worst on the Index, followed by the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Uganda, and Pakistan.
  • The United States of America was ranked 33rd compared to France (22nd) and Belgium (18th), which was surprising due to the recent terrorist attacks that were carried out in these two countries.
  • North America and Europe were the two regions with the best average WISPI scores. Sub-Saharan Africa had the worst average score, followed by South Asia and then Central America and the Caribbean.
  • Terrorism has increased dramatically over the last three years, with more than 62,000 people being killed in terrorist attacks between 2012 and 2014. The biggest rise in the last year occurred in Nigeria, the worst performing country on the WISPI.

To view the full World Internal Security and Police Index, users can access it through the Homeland Security Digital Library, the nation’s premier collection of documents related to homeland security policy, strategy, and organizational management.  Please note that users might have to log in to the HSDL in order to access certain materials.