Country Rankings

Explore the global index that ranks countries on women’s workforce equality. Although inequality for women in the workforce persists worldwide, governments are beginning to understand the costs—and take action.

  • Top 10
  • Bottom 10

This report measures the formal legal obstacles to women’s economic participation around the world. While there is often a large gap between laws on the books and their implementation, formal legal equality is a critical first step to closing the gap between women and men in the economy. All the top-ranked countries score at least a 90 out of 100 on protecting women’s access to institutions and their use of property. Many countries miss the mark on protecting women from violence, providing incentives to work, and eliminating barriers to jobs. No country gets a perfect score on women’s workplace equality, but Australia comes closest, with a score of 94.9 out of 100.

Out of the 189 countries covered, none of those ranked at the bottom scores highly on a single indicator. The ten bottom-ranked countries have near-zero scores for protecting women from violence and allowing women to build credit. Yemen is ranked last, with a score of 24.2 out of 100.

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Women’s access to employment and economic opportunity depends on many factors, from underlying economic conditions to social norms. This interactive highlights one critical precondition for women’s economic participation: equality under the law. The World Bank’s Women, Business and the Law 2018 report presents data on close to 170 gender inequalities in legal treatment in 189 countries, grouped into seven categories: accessing institutions, building credit, getting a job, going to court, protecting women from violence, providing incentives to work, and using property. The World Bank then scored countries on a narrower list of fifty legal gender inequalities selected from the full data set. For completeness, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) added to this list an additional six legal gender inequalities from the World Bank data set, selected because of their significance to women’s rights and opportunities. CFR then calculated a ranking of countries, giving each an overall average score between 0 and 100 (100 being the best).

Download the data

This data set includes the Council on Foreign Relations’ expanded set of scored questions and its country rankings.

See the methodology

Source: World Bank

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All countries


This country is not in the data set. The World Bank scored 189 countries on their level of legal inequalities related to women’s work.

All regions


  • East Asia and the Pacific
  • Europe and Central Asia
  • Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Middle East and North Africa
  • OECD
  • South Asia
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
All income groups


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  • Upper middle
  • Lower middle
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  • Highest to lowest score
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  • Overall average
  • Accessing institutions
  • Building credit
  • Getting a job
  • Going to court
  • Protecting women from violence
  • Providing incentives to work
  • Using property