Tunisia. Egypt. Where next?

First Tunisia. Now Egypt. The dominoes are toppling. Autocrats across the region and beyond are trembling as 2011 becomes the year of people power.

Where next? That’s the question on the perspiring lips of despots and dictators everywhere as they realise that even the dollars, arms and political might of the United States can’t be counted on to save them from their people’s demand for human rights.

The Economist has come up with a rather fun way of predicting which of the region’s nations are most likely to be next in line for a nonviolent revolution, The Shoe Thrower’s Index:

The Economist compiles the chart as follows, although they are honest enough to acknowledge that their weighting and calculations may well be a bit askew. Indeed, you’d think that Tunisia and Egypt might have made it a tad higher up the chart.

The chart below is the result of ascribing a weighting of 35% for the share of the population that is under 25; 15% for the number of years the government has been in power; 15% for both corruption and lack of democracy as measured by existing indices; 10% for GDP per person; 5% for an index of censorship and 5% for the absolute number of people younger than 25.

With Qatar at the bottom of the league table and the Yemeni regime (the people there are already revolting) most likely to teeter and fall, it’s the sort of thing that might even inspire Slugger’s favourite turf accountant Betfair to open a book. Meanwhile let the Slugger speculation commence.

I am the Northern Ireland Programme Director of Amnesty International UK and an occasional human rights blogger at Amnesty Blogs: Belfast & Beyond.

I’m on Twitter at @PatrickCorrigan