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Judicial education has been a focus of the ABA Rule of Law Initiative’s (ABA ROLI’s) work in Algeria, primarily through a partnership with the country’s judicial training institute—Ecole Superieure de la Magistrature (ESM). Our current program assists the institute in integrating technology and e-learning into its training programs, enabling it to reach more people with limited resources.
With ABA ROLI assistance, the institute has developed nine interactive, e-learning modules, which are designed to function as stand-alone courses. Topics include gender equality, international human rights and divorce under the Algerian Family Code. ABA ROLI is now helping the ESM to improve its information technology infrastructure to support wider use of the modules and to fully integrate the modules into the training curriculum.
We have also worked with the ESM to bolster the skills of judicial trainers, to enhance training methodologies and to build the institute’s capacity in new and emerging legal areas. Additionally, ABA ROLI helped the ESM develop an annotated course curriculum on judicial ethics and an accompanying teachers’ manual.
Working with the ESM and the Algerian Judges’ Syndicate, ABA ROLI organized comparative training workshops for judges on a range of topics, including judicial independence and ethics, media relations, public outreach, cyber-crime and freedom of expression.
The ABA Rule of Law Initiative’s (ABA ROLI’s) work throughout the Middle East and North Africa strives to support advancement of the legal profession. In Algeria, ABA ROLI has supported the bar associations’ efforts to upgrade their organizational capacity. In addition, ABA ROLI has helped bar associations develop and implement public education campaigns, and conduct a series of workshops for lawyers, judges, student judges and civil society members that elicited views on judicial development and legal reform priorities.
ABA ROLI has helped the Algerian Judges’ Syndicate build relations with regional and international judges’ associations, including by supporting the syndicate’s efforts to convene a Maghreb-wide judges’ meeting and to form a regional judges’ association.
ABA ROLI is working with local Algerian bar associations to increase continuing legal education (CLE) opportunities. CLE is an important tool, allowing lawyers to enhance their legal skills and stay abreast of recent legal trends. Hence, we support Algerian bar associations in their efforts to institutionalize a mandatory CLE and to make internship reforms.
Women in Algeria have made great strides in the legal profession over the past decade, and the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) is working to continue building upon that success. Through training programs on local and international law, practical skills, law office management and advocacy campaigning, ABA ROLI has contributed to the professional growth of young women lawyers working in “women’s interest law.”
ABA ROLI also assisted in drafting an off-the-shelf training manual designed to facilitate the implementation of advocacy and practical skills courses. The manual covers the courses developed throughout the program, and includes outlines, teaching notes, case studies and other materials. In addition, ABA ROLI supported a pro bono initiative, whereby attorneys take women’s rights cases.