Subject Areas for Technical Assistance

A collage of 5 color photographs features Canadian and foreign judges and court administrators at international cooperation meetings and conferences.  One photo features two local children from Ghana met during a mission in 2012.

In its cooperation work, the International Programs Division (IPD) provides international technical assistance in key areas of judicial administrative practice and competency building. IPD engages with judicial officials and experts from other countries in these core areas: 

Judicial Independence and Accountability

The work of the IPD tackles theoretical and practical elements of judicial independence and accountability, including facilitating dialogue to assist and strengthen mechanisms in support of the functional independence and accountability of judges.  Areas of assistance have included:

  • Assistance with development and adoption of ethical guidelines for judges (Ukraine, Mexico, China, Russia)
  • Support in the drafting of a judicial code of conduct and procedural rules for disciplining judges (China, Maldives, Ukraine)
  • Facilitation of exposure to Canadian practice, policy, and legislative and regulatory safeguards available in the judicial administrative context (Maldives, Ukraine, Mexico, Russia, China)
  • Coordination of high-level conferences and round table seminars on judicial independence and ethics (Ukraine, Russia, Mexico, Maldives, Jamaica)

Efficient Court Administration and Management

IPD supports the strengthening of court administration and management systems and processes through assisting to identify and respond to systemic impediments.  Areas of assistance have included:

  • Capacity building of senior judicial administrative personnel, education of personnel as trainers and development of training programs for registrars and court administrators (Ukraine, Jamaica, Ghana, Russia)
  • Streamlining of roles and functions as between administrative personnel and judges (Ukraine, Ethiopia, China, Peru, Mexico)
  • Development of a proposal for amendments to procedural rules (Peru, Russia)
  • Determination of capacity building needs relating to a specialized court (Russia, Ukraine)
  • Drafting and approving comprehensive sourcebooks on efficient court management and administration practices (Ukraine, Ghana, Jamaica, Ethiopia)
  • Strengthening management reporting, court statistics collection, judicial performance and court performance (Ethiopia, Jamaica, Ukraine)
  • Strengthening and streamlining case flow management and pre-trial processes including process mapping, improved client services and business process reengineering (China, Jamaica, Ukraine)
  • Court automation (Ukraine, Russia) and strengthening of information technologies (Ethiopia)
  • Developing archiving systems (Ghana, Ethiopia, Russia)
  • Planning and facilitation of directed exposure by judicial and court administration experts to Canadian court practices, policies and systems (virtually all programs)
  • Evaluation and identification of areas for reform (all programs)

Transparency in the Justice System

This component enables exposure among senior judicial institutional officials and personnel to principles of transparency and the strengthening of mechanisms in support of this principle.  Areas of assistance have included:

  • Introduction and assistance in the piloting of relevant media-related positions in courts and the development of related public documentation (Ukraine)
  • Capacity building of judges and press secretaries on interacting with the media (Ukraine)
  • Coordination of high-level round table seminars on increasing public awareness and on court-media relations (Russia)
  • Assistance with development of a framework for selection of judges (China)
  • Support in publicizing higher court judgments (Ethiopia)

Access to Justice

IPD provides assistance to institutional partners overseas in identifying and tackling systemic barriers to the accessibility of courts, including strengthening of mechanisms in support of greater overall accessibility and the functioning of the judicial process among court users.  Areas of assistance have included:

  • Examination of the accessibility of court operations to the public and introduce improvements, where appropriate, to increase the public’s access to and interaction with courts (i.e. reorganizing and/or adding space, improved signage, pamphlets/instructions on the preparation of documents, developing forms, etc.) (Russia, Ukraine, Ethiopia, Jamaica)
  • Coordination of conferences, panel discussions, and round table seminars on human rights, gender equality principles, social justice, legal empowerment of the poor, development and justice sector reform, rule of law and political stability, and judicial independence (Ukraine, Russia, Peru, Ghana, Jamaica, Canada)
  • Compilation and examination of gender-related laws (Ukraine)
  • Facilitation of Canadian judicial participation in an equality-related judicial education forum (South Asia regional partners)
  • Judicial gender mainstreaming initiatives including capacity building in gender-sensitive data recording of court cases (Ethiopia)