chapter  8
16 Pages

Legal education reform – the forgotten intervention? Assessing the legal retraining model in transitional economies


It is difficult to overestimate the impact of law reform processes on a developing country – all the more so for a transition economy, that is, one in transition from socialism. One Mongolian legal adviser, reflecting on the range and origins of new legal instruments, noted that Mongolia possessed a European Constitution, a US Commercial law, an Indonesian Petroleum law, a soon-to-be-passed German Civil Code, a Swedish Administrative law and a Canadian Bankruptcy law (World Bank, 2000: 37). This reflection, and a perusal of a list of legislation passed in any former socialist country since the fall of the Berlin Wall, would suggest that transforming economies are being propped up by their statute books, not by functioning business and legal sectors. Of course, the creation of new legal institutions through new laws is essential to the task of economic and legal reform, but the legal sector is made up of more components than simply the legislature.