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Indices, Indicators and Statistics: A View from the Project Side as to Their Utility and Pitfalls

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  30 September 2011

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This article reviews the utility of global indices and indicators of judicial performance and quality from the standpoint of those designing and implementing country reforms. It argues that despite the recurrent interest of donors in sponsoring these global systems, they are of limited use for reformers because 1) they operate at too high a level; 2) they consequently fail to capture the types of changes promoted by reform; and 3) they are too easily ‘gamed.’ A more significant drawback however is their likely discouragement of efforts to develop in-country management information systems, or databases on key events in case processing that could be used to generate more reform-specific measures. Donors must bear part of the responsibility here as their financing of court and sector-wide automation has overlooked this need as well.

Copyright © T.M.C. Asser Press and the Authors 2011

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