Judicial access and development: Evidence from Pakistan

Project Active from to State Effectiveness and State

Effective justice systems can improve the living conditions of populations by addressing violations of political rights, promoting peaceful dispute resolutions, and supporting economic governance for development. Yet, three challenges affect the Judiciary in most developing countries, and specifically in Pakistan: poor access, especially for vulnerable populations; inefficiency, reflected most evidently in the excessive length of time for resolving cases, and lack of reliable information to design policies that improve efficiency, accountability and access.

This project aims to improve judicial systems by empowering judicial bodies in Pakistan with data systems to inform decision making. Our team works closely with judicial bodies to improve the quality of data collected, as well as to leverage such data in order to incentivise judicial officers to improve performance and expand access to justice to firms and the most vulnerable populations.

In the first project, we test if high frequency information on performance affects decision making. We will assess whether i) information about one's own performance and biases affect one's decisions, ii) whether information about peers' affect decisions, iii) whether knowledge about one's performance and biases published to peers affect decisions, and iv) whether knowledge about performance and bias being published to the population affect decisions. In the second project, we'll investigate training of judges, assessing whether statistics training improves decision making.