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Country Policy and Institutional Assessment


World Bank

Stated Purpose: 

The Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA) aims to assess the quality of a country’s present policy and institutional framework. ‘Quality’ refers to how conducive that framework is to fostering poverty reduction, sustainable growth and the effective use of development assistance.

Area of Governance: 
Governance and MDG
Public Administration
Funding Source: 

World Bank

Current usage: 

CPIA ratings, or the overall country score, are used for informing country assistance strategies and World Bank loaning activities. The CPIA country scores were made
public in June 2006 and are increasingly used by the media and development actors.

Type of data used: 

The CPIA is based on the analytical work that is done in the Bank as well as information coming from other sources produced by organisations both within countries (administrative data etc) as well as regional and international organisations. Data is also collected from consultations with national stakeholders within the countries being assessed.


Country Coverage: 77 countries.
Year Coverage: 2005-2009

Contact details: 

The World Bank
1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433 USA
Tel: +1 (202) 473-1000



The CPIA rates countries against a set of 16 criteria grouped in four clusters: (a) economic management; (b) structural policies; (c) policies for social inclusion and equity; and (d) public sector management and institutions.

For each of the 16 criteria, countries are rated on a scale of 1 (low) to 6 (high).

The scores depend on the level of performance in a given year assessed against the criteria, rather than on changes in performance compared to the previous year. Bank staff assess the country’s actual performance on each of the criteria, and assign a rating. These scores are averaged—first to yield the cluster score, and then to determine a composite country rating as the average of the four clusters. The ratings reflect a variety of indicators, observations, and judgements based on country knowledge, originated in the Bank or elsewhere, and on relevant publicly available indicators. The ratings depend on actual policies and performance, rather than on promises or intentions. A copy of the 2005 questionnaire is available at:

Format of results: 


For each of the 16 criteria, countries are rated on a scale of 1 (low) to 6 (high).

Valid Use: 

The IDA Resource Allocation Index (IRAI) provides an overview of key features of a country’s institutional and policy framework.

Invalid Use: 

The CPIA ratings are focused on policies and institutions rather than outcomes. They are also based on actual not planned policies and represent a snapshot of country policies and institutions at a particular point in time. The CPIA ratings are produced by World Bank staff and reflect the biases and assumptions of what constitutes good policy and institutions of the organisation to which they belong.

Example results: 

The table below shows results across two of the cluster areas: ‘structural policies’ and ‘public sector management and institutions’ for selected countries in 2005.