The purpose of the ISCL is to encourage the comparative study of law and legal systems and to seek affiliation with individuals and organisations with complimentary aims. We were established in June 2008 and are recognised by the International Academy of Comparative Law.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Toward a Methodology for Successful Legal Transplants

Global efforts to promote rule of law and good governance have led to renewed interest in legal transplants. Many reforms projects have focused on the substance of legal transplants, prescribing particular laws, practices or institutions, concepts, norms and attitudes – usually those found in the advanced economies of Euro-America – for developing countries. The results of such projects have been disappointing. The lackluster results have called attention to the need to develop a workable methodology for legal reforms, focusing on the processes of reform. Such a methodology must be based on a better theoretical and empirical understanding of the conditions that determine the success or failure of legal transplants. Part I provides a general overview of the legal transplant literature, focusing on descriptions, prediction and evaluation. One of the shortcomings of current rule of law promotion programs is that they tend to prescribe a common set of 'best practices' for all countries. Relatively little work has been done on differentiating developing countries and developing categories or ideal types based on the types of challenges they face. Accordingly, Part I lays the groundwork for a methodology of legal reforms based on differential analysis by first distinguishing between three 'exceptional cases': failed states, post-conflict states, and transitional states. In particular, Part I contrasts the particular problems facing low-income countries (LICs) with those facing middle-income countries (MICs). Part II then develops a preliminary methodological framework for assessing legal reforms and legal transplants. Part III concludes.

Peerenboom, Randall, Toward a Methodology for Successful Legal Transplants (January 9, 2012).