Constitution Explorer Project

Stanford’s Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law (CDDRL) and Program on Liberation Technology are creating a database of constitutions searchable by subject. They are working on building a taxonomy and tagging individual articles and sections from foreign constitutions. When the database is finished, it should nicely complement  Hein’s Constitutions of the World Illustrated and Richmond’s Constitution Finder.

If you are in the bay area this weekend and wish to support this project, CDDRL is organizing an International Constitution Day volunteer session on Saturday, November 12th at Stanford.

See the following link for additional information:
http://cddrl.stanford.edu/events/6902

Governance and Social Development Resource Centre Document Library

The Governance and Social Development Resource Centre has put together a nice document library of citations and summaries of book chapters, reports, and journal articles arranged by keyword and by country. Links are provided to documents that are freely available on the Web. This site will help make up for the recent demise of the Intute portal.

From the Web site’s description:

“The document library is an up to date collection of the most credible publications available on governance, conflict and social development issues. It includes brief, policy-oriented summaries of each document highlighting the major findings and implications in an easy to read format, plus links to the full text online or by document delivery.

We monitor a wide range of publication sources weekly, including donors, NGOs and research institutes. Materials are carefully selected by our researchers to ensure that they are relevant to our topic area, demonstrate good practice or significant insight and represent a range of perspectives. Only the most credible and policy-relevant research, toolkits, analyses and case studies are included.”

Governance and Social Development Resource Centre Document Library
http://www.gsdrc.org/go/document-library

Tahrir Documents Project (Egypt)

Tahrir Documents

http://www.tahrirdocuments.org/

The Project as described by the editors and staff of Tahrir Documents:

We are pleased to announce the launch of Tahrir Documents, an ongoing project to archive and translate printed discourse from the 2011Egyptian revolution and its aftermath. The website presents a diverse collection of materials — among them activist newspapers, personal essays, advertisements, missives, and party communications —- incomplete English translation alongside reproductions of the Arabic-language originals. The site will be updated regularly, frequently, and indefinitely as new writings appear in response to post-revolution developments, and as we locate earlier materials. The assembled documents address a variety of contemporary concerns including Muslim-Christian relations, constitutional amendments, moral conduct, revolutionary strategy, and the women’s rights movement. Some of the highlights of the collection:

 

* A defense of protestors’ continued sit-in at Tahrir Squarereleased on March 9th, the same day on which their encampment wasdestroyed by thugs

* Guidelines for personal behavior after the revolution

* Numerous denunciations of sectarian violence

* The announcement of new political parties and presidential candidates.

* Numerous articles debating the constitutional amendments passedlast week

* Selections from Gurnal and Revolutionary Egypt, activistnewspapers founded after the revolution

 

We invite you to examine the website, and to return regularly as we post communications and commentaries from the post-Mubarak era. We believe the archive indicative of the diversity of political thought and action in contemporary Egypt, and hope that this diversity is ofinterest to anyone following the country’s transforming situation. The archive is searchable. Tahrir Documents is the work of volunteer translators in Egypt and abroad. It is not affiliated with any of those authors or groups whose works appear in translation on the website, nor with any organization foreign or domestic.

 

For more information please write to the editorial board at

tahrirdocuments@gmail.com.

 

We invite the submission of materials for translation and publication on the website.

 

 

Report: Prospects for Iran

Prospects for Iran

Jonathan  S. Paris

London: Legatum Institute (UK), 2011

http://www.li.com/attachments/20110116%20-%20Legatum%20Institute%20-%20Prospects%20for%20Iran.pdf

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Domestic Considerations

Chapter 2: Nuclear File

Chapter 3: Regional Snapshots

About the author:

Jonathan S. Paris is a London-based security specialist and Non-resident Senior Fellow with

the Atlantic Council of the United States South Asia Center. He is also an Adjunct Fellow at

the Legatum Institute and an Associate Fellow with the International Centre for the Study of

Radicalisation (ICSR) at King’s College London. In 2010, he authored the Legatum Institute’s

Prospects for Pakistan Report.

 

Before moving to London in 2001, he was a Middle East Fellow at the Council on

Foreign Relations in New York from 1995-2000, where he worked on the four MENA

Economic Summits and the Middle East peace process, and was deputy to Paul A. Volcker,

former Federal Reserve Bank Chairman, at the Council’s Middle East Economic Strategy

Group. Jonathan also co-edited the first book on Indonesia’s democratic transition, The

Politics of Post-Suharto Indonesia (Brookings/CFR 1999). A Senior Associate Member at St.

Antony’s College, Oxford from 2004-2005, he is a graduate of Yale University and Stanford

Law School.

 

Report: Quality of Official Development Assistance

New report from the Center for Global Development and the Brookings Institution

Quality of Official Development Assistance (QuODA)

Nancy Birdsall and Homi Kharas

http://www.cgdev.org/section/topics/aid_effectiveness/quoda

Abstract:

QuODA is an assessment of the Quality of Official Development Assistance (ODA) provided by 23 donor countries and more than 150 aid agencies. Aid quality is assessed using 30 indicators grouped in four dimensions that reflect the international consensus of what constitutes high-quality aid:

  • Maximizing Efficiency
  • Fostering Institutions
  • Reducing Burden
  • Transparency and Learning

Rankings can be viewed in separate indices and in the Quality of Aid Diamond, which makes it possible to quickly compare countries and agencies across all four dimensions. The authors hope that QuODA will be a catalyst for lively debates and, more importantly, for substantial improvements in how aid is provided.

African Peer Review Mechanism Report: Nigeria

African Peer Review Mechanism Country Review Report #8: Federal Republic of Nigeria

http://allafrica.com/download/resource/main/main/id/00011990.pdf

Additional country reports available at: http://www.aprm-international.org/

hat tip to Birgit Calhoun

Excerts from the foreword:

Six years ago, African Heads of State and Government came up with a jointly crafted and broadly supported agenda for advancing the basic values of democracy and good governance which together constitute the key requirements for the sustainable economic growth and development of their countries. The continental agenda, designated as the ‘African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM)’, has grown from strength to strength.

This Report candidly elucidates the challenges Nigeria faces, including managing its diversity in nation-building, reducing the country’s over-dependence on oil and providing public services to its 140 million inhabitants. The Report also recognises the sound initiatives that have been taken with a view to addressing these challenges. Notably, the Federal Character principle and the Council of State initiative, which are enshrined in the country’s constitution, are already yielding tangible results in nation-building. Nigeria has also made commendable efforts in tackling corruption through the establishment of institutions such as the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC). The Report has highlighted the remarkable leadership shown by President Yar’Adua in not only adhering to the constitutional requirements to declare his assets and liabilities before the Code of Conduct Bureau, but also going beyond the call of duty and making his declaration public. It is hoped that this example will be emulated at all levels of the public service and among ordinary citizens, for the betterment of the country.

We are convinced that the APRM will play a significant role in promoting courageous reforms that are needed to bring about changes in the political and economic environments of our countries, and in the living conditions of our populations. It is gratifying to note that, to date, 29 members of the African Union are currently participating in the APRM.

Afghanistan Legal Education Project

Stanford Law School just launched the Afghanistan Legal Education Project (ALEP) Web site. Here you find the ALEP Blog, links, and full-text of publications, including “Introduction to the Law of Afghanistan” and “Introduction to Commercial Law of Afghanistan.” Additional resources are planned for the future.

Afghanistan Legal Education Project

http://www.afghanistanlegaleducation.com/

About  ALEP

Founded in 2007, the Afghanistan Legal Education Project (ALEP) at Stanford Law School is dedicated to developing innovative legal curricula to help Afghanistan’s universities train the next generation of lawyers and leaders.
Afghanistan’s legal sector requires urgent attention. While other institutions are transitioning more quickly, reconstruction of the legal system lags behind. At the heart of this problem is a dire shortage of qualified lawyers. Because the assistance of skilled practitioners is crucial to the efforts of the people of Afghanistan to reconstitute their justice system, training the attorneys that will guide the rebuilding of Afghanistan is of chief importance. The students of today in Afghanistan are also the leaders of today, and familiarity with the justice system is essential for them to work in government, business, and virtually any other field.
In 2007-08, ALEP developed an introductory textbook on the laws of Afghanistan based on Afghanistan’s 2004 Constitution and current legal codes. It was the first legal textbook specifically on the law of Afghanistan created in the last thirty years. Afghan and international law experts reviewed the textbook at a symposium hosted by Stanford University and during a trip by the ALEP team to Kabul in March 2008. The textbook is the foundation of the first Legal Studies class at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF).
Already, over fifty students have taken the class, which was taught by Professor Mohammad Haroon Mutasem, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Law and Political Science at Kabul University and Lecturer in Law at AUAF. The introductory text will be available for free in Dari and Pashto by August 2009.
A common refrain among the students enrolled in the introductory law class was that they want still more offerings. To that end, in 2008-09, ALEP has continued to refine the introductory textbook and has drafted two new textbooks—one on commercial law and the other on criminal law. The textbooks will be taught in two new courses at AUAF in the fall and spring semesters 2009-2010, forming the core requirements of a certificate in law from AUAF.
In addition to writing textbooks, the ALEP team is in constant contact with rule of law experts in the region and at home in the United States. The project has forged a close alliance with the Afghanistan Legal Educators project at the University of Washington, of which Professor Mutasem is a graduate. In the future, ALEP will continue to write and develop textbooks and teaching materials for free distribution to AUAF and around Afghanistan

Global Integrity Report

The Global Integrity Report provides scorecards on anti-corruption and  rule of law  measures for individual countries. The reports include citations to statutes on areas of law such as, taxation, campaign contributions, bribery, and labor law.

Global Integrity Report http://report.globalintegrity.org/

Description of Global Integrity Report Methodology

The Global Integrity Report is a tool for understanding governance and anti-corruption mechanisms at the national level. Written by local researchers and journalists, the Report is characterized by an innovative, award-winning research methodology; a robust peer review process; and start-to-finish transparency.

Methodology Overview:

Unlike most governance and corruption indicators, the Global Integrity Report mobilizes a highly qualified network of in-country researchers and journalists to generate quantitative data and qualitative reporting on the health of a country’s anti-corruption framework. Each country assessment contained in the Global Integrity Report comprises two core elements: a qualitative Reporter’s Notebook and a quantitative Integrity Indicators scorecard, the data from which is aggregated and used to generate the cross-country Global Integrity Index.

An Integrity Indicators scorecard assesses the existence, effectiveness, and citizen access to key governance and anti-corruption mechanisms through more than 300 actionable indicators. It examines issues such as transparency of the public procurement process, media freedom, asset disclosure requirements, and conflicts of interest regulations. Scorecards take into account both existing legal measures on the books and de facto realities of practical implementation in each country. They are scored by a lead in-country researcher and blindly reviewed by a panel of peer reviewers, a mix of other in-country experts as well as outside experts. Reporter’s Notebooks are reported and written by in-country journalists and blindly reviewed by the same peer review panel.

Center for Systemic Peace

The Center for Systemic Peace has numerous Web pages with historical information related to political stability and changes in regimes.

Adverse Regime Changes in Africa 1955-2004  http://www.systemicpeace.org/africa/ACPPAnnex2a.pdf

Coup d’Etat in Africa 1946-2004 http://www.systemicpeace.org/africa/ACPPAnnex2b.pdf

Major Periods of Armed Conflict in Sub-Saharan Africa 1946-2004 http://www.systemicpeace.org/africa/ACPPAnnex1a.pdf

Polity IV Project Political Regime Characteristics and Transitions 1800-2007 http://www.systemicpeace.org/polity/polity4.htm

Description of the Center for Systemic Peace

The Center for Systemic Peace (CSP) was founded in 1997. It is engaged in innovative research on the problem of political violence within the structural context of the dynamic global system, that is, global systems analysis. The Center supports scientific research and quantitative analysis in many issue areas related to the fundamental problems of violence in both human relations and societal development. The focus of CSP research is on the possibilities of complex systemic management of all manner of societal and systemic conflicts. The Center regularly monitors and reports on general trends in societal-system performance, at the global, regional, and state levels of analysis and in the key systemic dimensions of conflict, governance, and (human and physical) development. The Center is now affiliated with the Center for Global Policy at George Mason University.

New Journal: Hague Journal on the Rule of Law

T.M.C. Asser Press and Cambridge Journals will debut the following journal in early 2009: Hague Journal on the Rule of Law.  Editorial board includes Julio Faundez, Randy Peerenboom, Sam Fuller, and Ronald Janse.

Hague Journal on the Rule of Law

http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=ROL

http://www.asserpress.nl/

From the Journal description:

An exciting new journal which provides a timely forum for the rapidly-expanding field of the rule of law, encapsulating cutting-edge study from all related disciplines. This unique focal point for the exchange of views between academics and practitioners gives focus to the promotion of the rule of law on both the national and international stage.

 

The journal aims to deepen and broaden the knowledge of the rule of law and its relation to economic growth, poverty reduction, promotion of democracy, protection of human rights and geopolitical stability. The journal invites and will publish academic articles, practitioner reports and commentary, book reviews and special volumes on major developments and themes in the rule of law field.