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Civilization VGods & KingsBrave New World
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Social policies are a new concept in Civilization V, representing the non-scientific or religious advancements of your society. They act as a system of gameplay bonuses, activated little by little as your empire develops its Culture Culture. Some of these bonuses are empire-wide (meaning they act on all cities and empire components at the same time), while others are related to particular buildings, units, or even Great People. Many Social Policies enhance individual buildings' functions - check the list of buildings for more info on that.

All policies are organised into trees, and each tree has to be unlocked before the specific policies in it can be adopted. The policies within each tree are further organized into branches, requiring that lower-level policies be adopted before higher-level ones become available. Unlocking a policy tree also activates a special bonus, as does adopting all five policies in it. Besides, each policy tree unlocks an honorific title for the leader.

For more information on the exact process of adopting policies, as well as for different strategies concerning Social Policies, check the Social strategy article.

In the Brave New World expansion, the social policies have been updated, with the inclusion of the Aesthetics and Exploration policy trees. Also, Piety can now be adopted right from the Ancient Era, while the next trees all unlock an Era earlier, giving the player a wider choice for development in the early game. No Policy trees are mutually exclusive anymore, and the Anarchy concept has been reserved for when you switch Ideology. Order, Autocracy, and Freedom have been excluded as Social policies, but one of these can be adopted as an Ideology once you build three Factories or reach the Modern Era. Even more than in Gods & Kings, a player's choice of Ideology can drastically impact his or her standings with another civilization. Finally, note that some World Wonders are now linked to Social Policy trees (for example, the Pyramids are linked to the Liberty tree) - now they can only be built if the relevant tree has been unlocked, AND you have researched the necessary technology.

Tradition Tradition[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Tradition (Civ5)

The Tradition tree is available right from the Ancient Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "Lord" for male leaders and "Lady" for female leaders.

Adopting Tradition greatly increases the rate of border expansion (25%) in cities (by diminishing the accumulated Culture Culture needed for successive new tiles) and also grants +3 Culture Culture in the Capital Capital. Unlocks building the Hanging Gardens wonder.

Adopting all Policies in the Tradition tree will grant +15% Food Growth in all cities and a free Aqueduct in your first four cities. It also allows the purchase of Great Engineers with Faith Faith starting in Industrial Era.

Policy Effect Requirement
Aristocracy (Civ5).png Aristocracy +15% Production Production when building Wonders (any Era) and +1 20xHappiness5.png Happiness for every 10 20xPopulation5.png Citizens in a City. Adopting Tradition
Oligarchy (Civ5).png Oligarchy Garrisoned units cost no maintenance and cities with a garrison gain +50% Ranged Combat Strength. Adopting Tradition
Legalism (Civ5).png Legalism Provides a free culture building in your first 4 cities. Oligarchy
Monarchy (Civ5).png Monarchy +1 Gold Gold and -1 Unhappiness (Civ5).png Unhappiness for every 2 20xPopulation5.png Citizens in the Capital Capital. Legalism
Landed elite (Civ5).png Landed Elite +10% Food Growth and +2 Food Food in the Capital Capital only. Legalism

Liberty Liberty[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Liberty (Civ5)

The Liberty tree is available right from the Ancient Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "Consul". Note that in the expansions, the order of Republic and Collective Rule was switched, although their bonuses remain the same.

Adopting Liberty will provide +1 Culture Culture in every city. Unlocks building the Pyramids wonder.

Adopting all policies in the Liberty tree will grant a free Great Person of your choice near the Capital Capital.

Policy Effect Requirement
Republic (Civ5).png Republic +1 Production Production in every City and +5% Production Production in cities when constructing Buildings (including Wonders). Adopting Liberty
Citizenship (Civ5).png Citizenship Tile improvement construction rate increased by 25% and a Worker appears near the Capital Capital. Adopting Liberty
Republic (Civ5).png Collective Rule Speeds the training of Settlers by 50% in the Capital Capital and a free Settler appears near the Capital Capital. (Venice receives a Merchant of Venice instead of Settler.) Republic
Meritocracy (Civ5).png Meritocracy +1 20xHappiness5.png Happiness for each City you own connected to the Capital Capital and -5% Unhappiness (Civ5).png Unhappiness from 20xPopulation5.png Citizens in non-occupied Cities. Citizenship
Representation (Civ5).png Representation Each city you found will increase the Culture Culture cost of policies by 33% less than normal. Also starts a Golden Age (if one is already in progress, it is extended). Citizenship

Honor Honor[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Honor (Civ5)

The Honor tree is available right from the Ancient Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "The Great".

Adopting Honor gives a +33% combat bonus against Barbarians; from now on notifications will be provided when new Barbarian Encampments spawn in revealed territory. Gain Culture Culture for the empire from each barbarian unit killed. (The Culture Culture earned is equal to the Melee strength Combat Strength or Ranged strength Ranged Combat Strength of the defeated unit, whichever is greater.) Unlocks building the Statue of Zeus wonder.

Adopting all policies in the Honor tree will grant Gold Gold for each enemy unit killed. (Note that this applies only to units killed directly by your actions. For example, you won't receive Gold Gold for a unit killed by the effect of a Citadel.) It also allows the purchase of Great Generals with Faith Faith starting from the Industrial Era.

Policy Effect Requirement
Warrior code (Civ5).png Warrior Code +15% Production Production when training Melee units and a Great General appears outside the Capital Capital. Great Generals are earned 50% faster. Adopting Honor
Discipline (Civ5).png Discipline +15% combat strength for melee units which have another military unit in an adjacent tile. Adopting Honor
Military caste (Civ5).png Military Caste Each City with a garrison increases local city 20xHappiness5.png Happiness by 1 and Culture Culture by 2. Note that cities in Resistance are unaffected by this! Discipline
Military tradition (Civ5).png Military Tradition Military Units gain 50% more Experience from combat. Warrior code
Professional army (Civ5).png Professional Army Gold Gold cost of upgrading Military Units reduced by 33% and construct Barracks, Armories, and Military Academies 50% faster. Military caste

Piety Piety[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Piety (Civ5)

The Piety tree is available right from the Ancient Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "The Pious".

Adopting Piety reduces the time to build Shrines and Temples by 50%. Unlocks building the Great Mosque of Djenne wonder.

Adopting all policies in the Piety tree will cause a Great Prophet to appear and Holy Sites provide +3 Culture Culture.

Policy Effect Requirement
Organized religion (Civ5).png Organized Religion +1 Faith Faith from Shrines and Temples. Adopting Piety
Mandate of heaven (Civ5).png Mandate of Heaven 20% discount on all purchases of religious units and buildings with Faith Faith (does NOT work for Great People, including Great Prophets). Adopting Piety
Theocracy (Civ5).png Theocracy Temples increase a city's Gold Gold output by 25%. Holy Sites provide +3 Gold Gold. Organized Religion
Free religion (Civ5).png Religious tolerance Cities with a majority religion also get the Pantheon belief bonus of the second most popular religion. Organized Religion
Reformation (Civ5).png Reformation If you founded a religion, gain a bonus Reformation belief. Religious tolerance

Patronage Patronage[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Patronage (Civ5)

The Patronage tree becomes available during the Classical Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "The Enlightened".

Adopting Patronage makes your Influence (Civ5).png Influence with City-States degrade 25% slower than normal. Unlocks building the Forbidden Palace wonder.

Adopting all policies in the Patronage tree will cause allied City-States to occasionally gift you Great People.

Policy Effect Requirement
Philantropy (Civ5).png Philanthropy Gifts of Gold Gold to a City-State generate 25% more Influence (Civ5).png Influence. Adopting Patronage
Consulates (Civ5).png Consulates Resting point for Influence (Civ5).png Influence level with all City-States is increased by 20. Adopting Patronage
Scholasticism (Civ5).png Scholasticism All City-States which are Allies provide a Science Science bonus equal to 25% of what they produce for themselves. Philanthropy
Cultural diplomacy (Civ5).png Cultural diplomacy Quantity of Resources gifted by City-States increased by 100%. 20xHappiness5.png Happiness from gifted Luxuries increased by 50%. Scholasticism
Merchant confederacy (Civ5).png Merchant confederacy +2 Gold Gold for trade routes with City-States. Scholasticism & Consulates

Aesthetics Aesthetics[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Aesthetics (Civ5)

The Aesthetics tree becomes available during the Classical Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "Master" for male leaders and "Mistress" for female leaders.

Adopting Aesthetics allows you to earn Great Writers, Artists, and Musicians 25% faster. Unlocks building the Uffizi.

Adopting all Policies in the Aesthetics tree doubles the theming bonus you receive from Museums and Wonders. It also allows the purchase of Great Writers, Artists, or Musicians with Faith Faith starting in the Industrial Era.

Policy Effect Requirement
Cultural centers (Civ5).png Cultural centers Construct Monuments, Amphitheaters, Opera Houses, Museums and Broadcast Towers 50% faster. Adopting Aesthetics
Fine arts (Civ5).png Fine arts 50% of excess 20xHappiness5.png Happiness added each turn to the amount of Culture Culture that may be spent on Social Policies or Ideological Tenets. Adopting Aesthetics
Flourishing of the arts (Civ5).png Flourishing of the arts Culture Culture increased by 33% in all cities which have built a World Wonder and the empire immediately enters a Golden Age. Cultural centers & Fine arts
Artistic genius (Civ5).png Artistic genius A Great Artist appears. Fine arts
Cultural exchange (Civ5).png Cultural exchange Increases the Tourism Tourism modifier for Shared Religion, Trade Routes, and Open Borders by 15% each. Flourishing of the arts

Commerce Commerce[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Commerce (Civ5)

The Commerce tree becomes available during the Medieval Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "Doge".

Adopting Commerce boosts Gold Gold output in Capital Capital City by 25%. Unlocks building Big Ben.

Adopting all Policies in the Commerce tree will grant +1 Gold Gold from every Trading Post. It also allows the purchase of Great Merchants with Faith Faith starting in the Industrial Era.

Policy Effect Requirement
Wagon trains (Civ5).png Wagon trains +2 Gold Gold from all your Land Trade Routes (with foreign nations). Maintenance paid on Roads and Railroads reduced by 50%. Adopting Commerce
Mercenary army (Civ5).png Mercenary army Allows the purchasing of Landsknechts. Adopting Commerce
Entrepreneurship (Civ5).png Entrepreneurship Great Merchants are earned 25% faster. Receive double Gold Gold from Great Merchant trade missions. Wagon trains
Mercantilism (Civ5).png Mercantilism Purchasing items in Cities requires 25% less Gold Gold. +1 Science Science from every Mint, Market, Bank and Stock Exchange. Mercenary army
Protectionism (Civ5).png Protectionism +2 20xHappiness5.png Happiness from each Luxury Resource. Entrepreneurship & Mercantilism

Exploration Exploration[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Exploration (Civ5)

The Exploration tree becomes available during the Medieval Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "Captain".

Adopting Exploration gives +1 Movement Movement for Naval units and +1 Sight for Naval Combat units. Unlocks building the Louvre.

Adopting all Policies in the Exploration tree allows you to see Hidden Antiquity Sites. It also allows the purchase of Great Admirals with Faith Faith starting in the Industrial Era.

The +1 Movement Movement bonus from this policy tree also applies to embarked units.

Policy Effect Requirement
Maritime infrastructure (Civ5).png Maritime infrastructure +3 Production Production in all coastal Cities. Adopting Exploration
Naval tradition (Civ5).png Naval tradition +1 20xHappiness5.png Happiness for each Harbor, Seaport, or Lighthouse. Adopting Exploration
Navigation school (Civ5).png Navigation school A Great Admiral appears. +2 Movement for all Great Admirals. Great Admirals are earned 50% faster. Naval tradition
Merchant navy (Civ5).png Merchant navy +1 Gold Gold for each Harbor, Seaport, or Lighthouse, +4 Production Production and +4 Culture Culture in the city with the East India Company. Maritime infrastructuve & Naval tradition
Treasure fleets (Civ5).png Treasure fleets +4 Gold Gold from all your Sea Trade Routes. Merchant navy

Rationalism Rationalism[edit | edit source]

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Main article: Rationalism (Civ5)

The Rationalism tree becomes available during the Renaissance Era. Choosing this policy first will give you the title "The Wise".

Adopting Rationalism will grant +10% Science Science while the empire is Happy. Unlocks building the Porcelain Tower.

Adopting all Policies in the Rationalism tree will grant a free Technology. It also allows the purchase of Great Scientists with Faith Faith starting in the Industrial Era.

Policy Effect Requirement
Secularism (Civ5).png Secularism +2 Science Science from every Specialist. Adopting Rationalism
Humanism (Civ5).png Humanism Great Scientists are earned 25% faster. Adopting Rationalism
Free thought (Civ5).png Free thought +1 Science Science from every Trading Post and +17% Science Science from Universities. Humanism
Sovereignty (Civ5).png Sovereignty +1 Gold Gold from Science buildings. Secularism
Scientific revolution (Civ5).png Scientific revolution Boosts Science Science gained from Research Agreements by +50%. Sovereignty

Related achievements

Artistic License
Artistic License
Fully explore the Aesthetics Policy track.
Death Before Shame
Death Before Shame
Fully Explore the Honor Policy Track.
Diplomacy by Other Means
Diplomacy by Other Means
Fully Explore the Autocracy Policy Track.
Eighty-Eight Miles per Hour
Eighty-Eight Miles per Hour
Fully Explore the Rationalism Policy Track.
Freedom Isn't Free
Freedom Isn't Free
Fully Explore the Freedom Policy Track.
Lux Perpetua Luceat Eis
Lux Perpetua Luceat Eis
Fully Explore the Piety Policy Track.
Master of the House
Master of the House
Fully Explore the Tradition Policy Track.
Money Doesn't Grow on Trees
Money Doesn't Grow on Trees
Fully Explore the Commerce Policy Track.
Team Player
Team Player
Fully Explore the Patronage Policy Track.
With Liberty and Justice for All
With Liberty and Justice for All
Fully Explore the Liberty Policy Track.
Civilization V [edit]
Gods & KingsBrave New World

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