Rule of Law Center of Innovation Peacebuilding: A Global Imperative
It is essential that the United States, working with the international community, play an active part in preventing, managing, and resolving conflicts. Fragile states, ethnic and religious strife, extremism, competition for scarce resources and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction all pose significant challenges to peace. The resulting suffering and destabilization of societies make effective forms of managing conflict imperative. The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) is dedicated to meeting this imperative in new and innovative ways.
USIP’s Mission and Goals
The United States Institute of Peace is an independent, nonpartisan, national institution established and funded by Congress. Its goals are to help:
Prevent and resolve violent international conflicts
Promote post-conflict stability and development
Increase conflict management capacity, tools, and intellectual capital worldwide
The Institute does this by empowering others with knowledge, skills, and resources, as well as by directly engaging in peacebuilding efforts around the globe.
USIP’s Rule of Law Center of Innovation
The Rule of Law Center of Innovation conducts research, identifies best practices, conducts training and develops new tools for policymakers and practitioners working to promote the rule of law. The program is based on the premise that adherence to the rule of law entails far more than the mechanical application of laws and establishment of formal institutions. The center takes on an active role in shaping the field and in advancing the rule of law in fragile and post-conflict societies.
For more information about the Rule of Law Program, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 457-1700. For further information on the United States Institute of Peace, please contact the Office of Public Affairs and Communications by e-mail at email@example.com, by phone at (202) 457-1700 or visit the Institute’s Web site at www.usip.org.
The George Washington University,
African Center for Health and Human Security
Culture in Global Affairs Program African Center for Health and Human Security
The George Washington University Africa Center for Health and Human Security was formed under the direction of Provost and Vice President for Health Affairs John "Skip" Williams in November 2004 to explore forward-looking and innovative ways to enhance capacity, improve dialogue, provide information and resources, and assist in attaining solutions that better the life of Africans. The Center provides a forum for experts from a range of disciplines to discuss such issues as health and environment (disease, geographic information systems, remote sensing, urbanization, nutrition, water, sanitation); security (conflict resolution, governance, poverty, terrorism, violence); and education and infrastructure (information technology, capacity building, water, sanitation). These issues are evaluated within the multi-dimensional context that includes environmental realities and the rapidly changing situations of Africans. The Center distinguishes itself from other academic and advocacy groups by integrating diverse academic, research and policy agendas that drive programmatic action in Africa.
Culture in Global Affairs Program
Culture in Global Affairs (CIGA), a research and policy program in George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, seeks to promote knowledge about global and local cultures and their policy relevance. CIGA sponsors an annual seminar series and supports a blog, anthropologyworks.com.
The World Bank,
Justice for the Poor Program What is Justice for the Poor?
Effective justice systems are crucial for good governance and sustainable development. Justice systems play a key role in shaping the distribution of rights, responsibilities and power; they underpin the provision of public services, mediate conflict, and facilitate institutional change. However, there is limited understanding of how equitable justice systems emerge, and thus how they can be promoted. Justice for the Poor (J4P) is an attempt by the World Bank and its counterparts to establish a context-specific evidence base on which to grapple with the theory and practice of building more equitable justice systems, especially at the local level and in settings where non-state justice systems often prevail.
How Does Justice for the Poor Operate?
J4P recognises that law, justice and pluralist legal orders are issues that cut across all aspects of development; thus the program focuses on integrating such considerations into broader reform processes. Three key methods are used: (a) Research, Analysis and Dialogue, in which intensive field-based research identifies the nature of existing justice mechanisms, and possible entry points for reform; (b) Experimentation through context specific operational pilots; and (c) Scaling Up and Mainstreaming, by expanding successful pilots and incorporating lessons from both research and pilots into broader sectoral (e.g. land, service delivery) and governance programs. In addition, all J4P country teams seek to build local research and analytical capacity.
Why Does Justice for the Poor Operate this Way?
Attempts by development organizations to ‘build the rule of law’ have a long but often difficult history. This stems in large part from theoretical assumptions and organizational imperatives encouraging the replication of ‘successful’ institutions from one (usually western) country in others. Legal reform is thus frequently treated as a largely technical problem. J4P draws on the skills of lawyers, but is also deeply informed by insights from legal anthropology, social theory and political history, which offer a different intellectual basis for characterizing the problem and thus the responses to it. From this perspective, legitimate, effective local justice institutions emerge iteratively, as much through locally embedded processes of contestation, as through the adoption of institutional or legal ‘blueprints’.
What are Some Concrete Examples of Justice for the Poor in Action?
In Indonesia, J4P is working to ensure that disputes arising out of national community driven development programs have adequate avenues of redress, while also working with NGOs to provide basic legal services to marginalised groups. In Cambodia, J4P teams are supporting efforts to build land and labour rights. In Kenya, J4P works in arid settings to sustain the rights and livelihoods of minority groups. In Sierra Leone, the program focuses on community rights and entitlements in mining areas as well as more generally at the question of supporting local governance efforts in the context of legal pluralism. J4P has recently expanded into Timor-Leste, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands.
For more information please visit www.worldbank.org/justiceforthepoor or contact firstname.lastname@example.org