Freedom in the World is an institutional effort by Freedom House to monitor the progress of political rights and civil liberties. It emerged in 1955. The official website of Freedom House is http://www.freedomhouse.org/.
The Freedom in the World 2008 survey contains reports on 192 countries and 15 related and disputed territories. Each country report begins with a section containing basic political, economic, and social data arranged in the following categories: polity, economy, population, purchasing power parities (PPP), life expectancy, religious groups, ethnic groups, capital, political rights, civil liberties, and status (free, partly free, or not free). Freedom House has been publishing annual yearbook since 1978.
Since 1989, Freedom House has been conducting surveys and gathering information from a wide range of sources, including many human rights activists, journalists, and political figures around the world. The survey team also consults a large array of published materials, ranging from the reports of other human rights organizations to regional newspapers and journals.
Apart from surveys, Freedom house obtains data from CIA Factbook, United Nations Development Program Human Development Report, The World Almanac and Book of Facts. The political rights and civil liberties categories contain numerical ratings between 1 and 7 for each country or territory rated, with 1 representing the most free and 7 the least free. Each country report is divided into two parts: an overview and an analysis of political rights and civil liberties. While the overview provides a brief historical background and a description of major recent events, the political rights and civil liberties section summarizes each country or territory’s degree of respect for the rights and liberties.