The creation of the WRCES Merit ranking serves the purpose of acknowledging countries that excel in international sports despite their relative size or resources.

In our pursuit to identify the key determinants of a country's success in elite sports, we conducted an in-depth analysis spanning six consecutive years: 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019. This rigorous study aimed to reveal the correlations between WRCES Merit ranking results and several socio-economic factors, including population, GDP, GDP per capita, and population density for the same set of countries. We undertook this comparative study because these parameters hold significant sway, reflecting the impact of demography, economic wealth, and geographical factors. Researchers in the field have consistently identified these macro-level factors as critical influencers.

To establish these correlations, we compared the points earned by each country in the WRCES Merit ranking against their respective demographic and economic data, including population size, GDP (measured in millions of US dollars), GDP per capita, and population density (measured in inhabitants per square kilometer). Our categorization of correlation strength is as follows:

  • 0-0.19: Very weak
  • 0.2-0.39: Weak
  • 0.4-0.59: Moderate
  • 0.6-0.79: Strong
  • 0.8-1: Very strong

Years Correlations WRCES-Population Correlations WRCES-GDP Correlations WRCES-GDP per Capital Correlations WRCES-Population Density
2014 0.39 0.78 0.23 -0.05
2015 0.35 0.76 0.28 -0.04
2016 0.34 0.76 0.28 -0.04
2017 0.30 0.75 0.29 -0.04
2018 0.30 0.75 0.30 -0.03
2019 0.34 0.74 0.29 -0.04

This unique ranking system is designed to showcase the exceptional accomplishments of nations that exceed their usual standing in the world of international sports. GDP is a crucial determinant influencing countries' performances in international competitions. The WRCES Merit Ranking will underscore and evaluate countries' performances based on their GDP.

2023 WRCES Merit Ranking

2022 WRCES Merit Ranking