Mitigating Administrative Barriers to Successful International Rule of Law Reform

Note from the Digital Editor: In order to highlight the high-level of research and scholarship from the authors who have published in the William & Mary Policy Review’s peer-reviewed print journal, we have reproduced the abstracts from Volume 9, Issue 2 along with a link to an electronic copy of the full form of the piece. 

Encouraging adherence to the rule of law has become a standard response to the complicated problems surrounding governance, security, and economic health in the developing world—accompanied by significant appropriations to promote that adherence.

Although exact figures are difficult to ascertain, it is estimated that the U.S. Government alone spends hundreds of millions of dollars per year on rule of law promotion. Despite this robust level of funding, the rule of law profession has struggled to develop consistently effective interventions that can live up to policy expectations. Although research and innovations in project implementation are continually improving project function and outcome, most projects struggle to measure and maintain results. It is a universal challenge in the field, and therefore every step in the process of mandating, designing, procuring, implementing, and evaluating rule of law projects should be examined for areas that could be improved.

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Citizen Security Policy in El Salvador: Examining Critical Assumptions

Note from the Digital Editor: In order to highlight the high-level of research and scholarship from the authors who have published in the William & Mary Policy Review’s peer-reviewed print journal, we have reproduced the abstracts from Volume 9, Issue 2 along with a link to an electronic copy of the full form of the piece. 

A primary challenge in El Salvador is chronic violence and a prevailing sense of insecurity. “Citizen security” policies assume that there are differences in social organization or disorganization that help explain variations in violence and insecurity at the sub-national level. We seek to examine that association in El Salvador. We draw on quantitative survey data from El Salvador to evaluate this critical assumption for the first time. We find that there is little or no difference in the level of social organization between municipalities no matter the experienced level of violence (homicide rate). There is some difference in perceived violence (sense of security). However, no associations are as strong as expected. Based on these results, scholars, practitioners, and policymakers would be well served to scrutinize crime prevention prescriptions based on social disorganization theory in El Salvador and elsewhere in Central America.

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Measuring Regulatory Responsiveness in India: A Framework for Empirical Assessment

Note from the Digital Editor: In order to highlight the high-level of research and scholarship from the authors who have published in the William & Mary Policy Review’s peer-reviewed print journal, we have reproduced the abstracts from Volume 9, Issue 2 along with a link to an electronic copy of the full form of the piece. 

This paper seeks to create a measurable set of benchmarks to measure responsiveness of regulators to citizens’ preferences. We construct a set of benchmarks of responsive conduct, and ascribe corresponding quantifiable outputs to each benchmark. We then empirically measure the responsiveness of four statutory regulators in India, against these benchmarks. We find generally low levels of responsiveness among the four statutory regulators covered in this study and significant variations in the levels of responsiveness among them. We also find significant differences in the legal requirements for responsive regulation-making in the laws that establish these regulators. Lastly, we find a correlation between the legal requirement for responsiveness and the degree of responsiveness exhibited by these regulators. We argue that the measures proposed in this paper provide a strong objective basis to measure regulatory responsiveness for regulators located in a similar legal and institutional context.

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