2018 Index of Economic Freedom


The Index of Economic Freedom is the product of intense collaboration with people and organizations around the world. While it is impossible to mention all of those who have contributed to our success, we wish to express our gratitude to the myriad individuals serving with various international organizations, research institutions, government agencies, embassies, and other organizations who provide the data used in the Index. Assistance from them is vital and greatly appreciated.

The Heritage Foundation’s Center for International Trade and Economics (CITE) leads the Index production effort and is responsible for the grading and ranking of all countries. CITE interns Kelly Cousoulis, Kyle Ferrebee, Michael Marn, Charles Busch, Erin Bardin, Sean Korolevich, Robert Bellafiore, Rachael Wolpert, and Logan Kolas provided significant research and quality control throughout the year. We are particularly grateful for the assistance of Bryan Riley, who served as the Center’s Jay Van Andel Senior Analyst in Trade Policy for most of 2017 and contributed substantially to the current edition of the Index.

Various Heritage Foundation foreign policy experts who provided country background information include Bruce Klingner, Riley Walters, and Director Walter Lohman of the Asian Studies Center; Daniel Kochis of the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom; and Joshua Meservey, Jim Phillips, Ana Quintana, and Director Luke Coffey of the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy.

Senior Copy Editor William T. Poole bears primary responsibility for perfecting the language we employ, and Manager of Data Graphics Services John Fleming created the wonderful charts and graphs that appear throughout the book. Therese Pennefather, Director of Research Editors, played a key role in keeping the production on schedule. Creative Director, Melissa Bluey, Jay Simon, Art Director, and Amy de Venoge, Graphic Designer, were responsible for the design and layout of the Index.

The transformation of the Index into electronic formats is made possible by the efforts of Director of Digital Maria Sousa and Director of Information Technology Tim McGovern and his team, which includes Isabel Isidro and former Heritage staffer Jim Lawruk.

Dr. James Jay Carafano, Vice President for the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy, and Jack Spencer, Vice President for the Institute for Economic Freedom, provided advice and assistance throughout the year.

We also wish to acknowledge our enduring debt to Chairman Thomas A. Saunders III and the Heritage Board of Trustees for their support. We remain deeply indebted to Dr. Edwin J. Feulner, Founder of The Heritage Foundation, Senior Adviser Phil Truluck, and Distinguished Fellow Dr. Kim R. Holmes, who was a founding editor of the Index. Without their vision and support, this project could never have become a reality and achieved such success over the past 24 years.

Ambassador Terry Miller
Anthony B. Kim
James M. Roberts
January 2018

Heritage Media Contacts

  • Justin Posey
    • Communications Manager, Institute for Economic Freedom and Opportunity
    • work: 202.608.6175
    • cell: 202.230.6690
  • Jim Weidman
    • Director, Editorial Services
    • work: 202.608.6145

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