Envisioning Reform: Conceptual and Practical Obstacles to Improving Judicial Performance in Latin America
Judicial reform became an important part of the agenda for development in Latin America early in the 1980s, when countries in the region started the process of democratization. Connections began to be made between judicial performance and market-based growth, and development specialists turned their attention to “second generation” institutional reforms. Although considerable progress has been made already in strengthening the judiciary and its supporting infrastructure (police, prosecutors, public defense counsel, the private bar, law schools, and the like), much remains to be done.
Linn Hammergren’s book aims to turn the spotlight on the problems in the movement toward judicial reform in Latin America over the past two decades and to suggest ways to keep the movement on track toward achieving its multiple, though often conflicting, goals. After Part I’s overview of the reform movement’s history since the 1980s, Part II examines five approaches that have been taken to judicial reform, tracing their intellectual origins, historical and strategic development, the roles of local and international participants, and their relative success in producing positive change. Part III builds on this evaluation of the five partial approaches by offering a synthetic critique aimed at showing how to turn approaches into strategies, how to ensure they are based on experiential knowledge, and how to unite separate lines of action.
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The first section of this work looks in greater detail at a series of the most common approximations. Whereas some authors attempt to summarize the goals in terms of a short list of common goals—access, efficiency, ...
Table 1 lays out some of the most common goals and related activities. In descending order, they are presented from the least to most instrumental in focus. The objectives are presented with their logical activities and results.
Indicators of Success Objectives Common Activities Major Promoters Building a strong, professional judiciary as an independent political institution Merit appointments, new forms of judicial governance, budgetary autonomy and higher ...
To avoid repetition, activities that are common to several approaches (for example, adr, training, legal change) are discussed in detail only in the approach in which they appear most central. Following the courtroom tactic of ...
... participants can overcome less helpful past practices and the incentive systems underlying them and so adopt a more collaborative approach to identifying what they collectively know and using it to improve their common efforts.
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Envisioning Reform: Improving Judicial Performance in Latin America
Limited preview - 2010