The substantive interpretation favoured by Dworkin, Laws and Allan states that the rule of law protects all or part of the rights of the individual himself. The rule of law is considered one of the key dimensions that determine the quality and good governance of a country.  Research, such as the Global Governance Indicators, defines the rule of law as “the extent to which officers trust and respect the rules of society, in particular the quality of contract, police and court enforcement, as well as the likelihood of crime or violence.”  Based on this definition, the Global Governance Indicators project has developed aggregated measures of the rule of law in more than 200 countries, as shown in the map on the right.  The International Development Law Organization has a holistic definition of the rule of law: the Finnish constitution explicitly requires the rule of law by stating that “the exercise of sovereign powers must be based on a law. In any public activity, the law must be strictly adhered to. The purpose of the law is served by five “elements” of the rule of law: The Council of the International Bar Association adopted a resolution in 2009 approving a substantial or “thick” definition of the rule of law: The Statute of the Council of Europe characterises the rule of law as one of the fundamental principles on which the creation of the organisation is based. Paragraph 3 of the preamble to the Statute of the Council of Europe states: “Reaffirming their attachment to the spiritual and moral values which are the common heritage of their peoples and the true source of individual freedom, political freedom and the rule of law, principles which constitute the basis of all true democracy.” The Statute establishes respect for the principles of the rule of law as a condition for the full accession of European States.  East Asian cultures are influenced by two schools of thought, Confucianism, which advocated good governance as a rule by benevolent and virtuous rulers, and legalism, which advocated strict adherence to the law. The influence of one school of thought on the other has changed over the centuries.
A study shows that in East Asia, only South Korea, Singapore, Japan, Taiwan and Hong Kong have companies strongly committed to a state bound by law.  According to Awzar Thi, a member of the Asian Human Rights Commission, the rule of law in Cambodia and most of Asia is weak or non-existent: in 1215, Archbishop Stephen Langton gathered the barons in England and forced King John and future rulers and judges to return to the rule of law, preserving the old freedoms of the Magna Carta in exchange for high taxes.   This basis of a constitution has been incorporated into the U.S. Constitution. In Thailand, the police favor the rich and the corrupt. In Cambodia, judges are deputies of the ruling political party. Whether a judge harbours political prejudice or applies the law unevenly is the least concern for an ordinary defendant in Asia. More likely, will the police fabricate the evidence? Will the prosecutor bother to show up? Will the judge fall asleep? Will I be poisoned in prison? Will my file be closed within a decade?  In France and Germany, the concepts of the rule of law correspond to the principles of constitutional supremacy and the protection of fundamental rights before the authorities (see public law), in particular the legislature.   The France was one of the first pioneers of the ideas of the rule of law.  The German interpretation is “more rigid” but similar to that of the France and the United Kingdom.   Some modern scholars argue that the rule of law has been corroded over the past century by the instrumental view of the law promoted by legal realists such as Oliver Wendell Holmes and Roscoe Pound.