For the seventh year in a row, Norway remains the most democratic nation, while Western Europe accounts for 14 of the 19 full democracies.
The United States remained in the 'flawed democracy' threshold, to which it dropped in 2016 after a serious decline in public trust, the Economist said.
Overall, across the world, the sad reality is that democratic norms are slipping, according to the figures. Things that are being affected include declining trust in institutions, erosion of civil liberties and curbs on freedom of speech.
The report read:
The state in many countries plays a prominent role in curtailing freedom of the media and of expression.
Governments, in democratic as well as authoritarian countries, are deploying defamation laws, prevention of terrorism laws, blasphemy and “hate speech” laws to curb freedom of expression and stymie media freedom.