Rule of Law Index

The World Justice Forum meeting in Vienna, Austria has just released the Rule of Law Index. The Index uses numerical indicators to gauge the strength of rule of law in 35 countries, including developed and developing countries.

Here are the 4 broad criteria , with sub-categories, used to create the scores  for each country. It includes compliance with international law.

1. Accountable Government

Government powers limited by constitution

Governmental and non‐governmental checks

Accountable government officials and agents

Accountable military, police, and prison officials

Compliance with international law


2. Publicized and stable laws that protect fundamental rights

Laws are clear, publicized and stable

Laws protect fundamental rights

Laws protect security of the person

Laws protect security of property

3. Accessible, fair, and efficient process

Accessible process

Fair and efficient administration


4. Access to Justice

Impartial and accountable judicial system  

Efficient, accessible and effective judicial system

Competent and independent attorneys or representatives

Fair and efficient alternative dispute resolution

Rule of Law Index 2009

ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights

On October 23rd, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) officially inaugurated the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights. The Terms of Reference that are the by-laws for the commission can be found at:

Excerpts from the Terms of Reference:


1.4 To promote human rights within the regional context, bearing in

mind national and regional particularities and mutual respect for

different historical, cultural and religious backgrounds, and taking

into account the balance between rights and responsibilities;


4.2. To develop an ASEAN Human Rights Declaration with a view to

establishing a framework for human rights cooperation through

various ASEAN conventions and other instruments dealing with

human rights;


6.8 The AICHR is the overarching human rights institution in ASEAN

with overall responsibility for the promotion and protection of

human rights in ASEAN.

Additional information available at 


Book on Forest Management in Indonesia

International Campaign for Ecological Justice in Indonesia (Down to Earth) has published an online book on indigenous forest managment in Indonesia. Edited by Liz Chidley, Yuyun Indradi, and Emilianus Ola Klenden.

Forests for the Future: Indigenous Forest Management in a Changing World

Table of Contents

The Ciptagelar Indigenous Community, West Java
Developing a bargaining position over customary forest
Ki Ugis Suganda 
The Guguk Indigenous Community, Jambi
Protecting customary forests with local regulations
Datuk H. Abubakar 
The Kiyu Dayak Indigenous Community, Meratus, South Kalimantan
Strengthening alliances to campaign for forest protection
Andy Syahruji (team leader), Balai Kiyu 
The Sembalun Indigenous Community, Lombok
Building consensus to save adat forest on Mount Selong
Abdulrahman Sembahulun and Y. L. Franky 
The Indigenous Ngata Toro Community, Central Sulawesi
Reforming Adat to promote environmental, economic and cultural sustainability
Rizal Mahfud and Rukmini Paata Toheke 
Tana Ai Indigenous Communities, East Flores
Maintaining traditional culture as a way of protecting the environment
Murray Muhammad H. Basyir 
Indonesian Overview
Indigenous Peoples’ Writing on Forest Management: A Counter Discourse?
Suraya Afiff 
International Overview
Indigenous Natural Resource Management Systems at the Crossroads
Chip Fay 
Communities in Transformation
Emil Kleden