Promoting institutional change abroad: A “tactical approach” yields success in Russian courts
International aid programs aimed at improving the performance of governmental institutions frequently fail to achieve their objectives. In the current issue of Governance (23.3, July 2010), Peter Solomon of the University of Toronto describes a success story: programs funded by Canadian and US aid agencies to promote the efficiency and fairness of Russian courts. Solomon says that success was rooted in a “tactical approach” to reform, “grounded in flexible and recipient centered experimentation.” This is an effective way of building trust and a sense of ownership among key stakeholders. “The process,” Solomon concludes, “requires a patience, flexibility, and humility that may not be possible when a transfer of experience is fully planned.” Read the article.