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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For the first time in the region, there are criticisms of policymaking by unaccountable judges.13 Judicial councils and other new governance mechanisms demonstrate no marked improvement in the quality of budgetary or human resource ...
These include the delegation of judicial functions to untrained courtroom staff, the complete failure of the police to cooperate with the judicial investigation, the investigating judge's dual role as sentencing judge, ...
Throughout the region, countries adopted judicial councils, representative bodies usually located outside the judiciary and intended to manage the selection and promotions of judges and sometimes court staff. The move was usually linked ...
Although the trial judge or judges have access to the dossier once it is completed, the instructional judge has no further ... As a rule, European trial judges take a much more active part in the proceedings than do their common-law ...
The duties of the prosecution (public ministry), instructional and sentencing judges tended to be handled by a single judicial ... and much of the real investigation fell to a single judge.11 This individual, the instructional judge, ...
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Envisioning Reform: Improving Judicial Performance in Latin America
Limited preview - 2010