Judges and Democratization: Judicial Independence in New Democracies

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9781503100466: Judges and Democratization: Judicial Independence in New Democracies

Judiciaries must be politically impartial and immune from political interference if democracy is to be consolidated in countries in transition from authoritarian rule. Without an independent judiciary there can be no rule of law, and without the rule of law there can be no democracy. Judges and Democratization is based on the premise that democracy cannot be consolidated without the rule of law of which judicial independence is an indispensable part. It pays particular attention to the restraints placed upon judicial independence, and the reforms which are being applied, or remain to be adopted, in order to guard against the different kinds of interference which prevent judicial decisions being taken in a wholly impartial way. It examines the paradox of judicial activism arising from the independence endowed upon the judiciary by post-authoritarian constitutions. Judicial activism raises concerns that the legitimate authority of elected legislatures is being usurped. Consequently, demands have been voiced to make the judiciary more accountable. Judges and Democratization asks how such accountability can be made compatible with the preservation of judicial independence when the concept of an accountable independent judiciary appears to be a contradiction in terms.

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About the Author :

The author is Emeritus Professor of Politics at the University of Dundee. During his academic career he taught political science at universities in the UK, Canada and Nigeria. He has been a Lecturer in Public Administration at the Civil Service College in London and a Visiting Fellow at the Federalism Research Centre in the Australian National University. He has acted as a Consultant for the Commonwealth Secretariat, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, and the Danish Centre for Development Research. His publications include Progress In Development Administration, British Aid and International Trade, Understanding Third World Politics: Theories of Political Change and Development (now in its fourth edition), and Good Governance and Development. He has published papers in Public Administration and Development, Community Development Journal, International Review of Administrative Sciences, and Government and Policy. He edited the journal Public Administration and Development from1984-92.

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