Review of the Rule of Law Advisory Mission on Moldova (NORLAM)
NORLAM is working across most of the criminal justice chain, including the correctional and rehabilitation aspects. This is not in itself entirely a unique approach, but it is considered as rare for a single development partner to have such a wide reaching programme that aims to adopt a holistic approach across the chain. It is worthwhile to consider broader use of such an approach across the world of SSR. NORLAM has the resources and skill sets to work across the chain, including if necessary using the police prosecutor to work with the police. It understands the linkages between the different elements of the chain and has good relationship with all its partners. Working on only one element of the chain can cause imbalances within the chain that undermine the effectiveness of reform efforts and not yield sustainable results. Working on the entire chain requires more support but has higher potential for sustainability.
NORLAM resource pool of rule of law experts from Norway is an interesting modality. The particularity is that all experts are active practitioners in their field – which is also very rare in development programmes in SSR. It is also noteworthy that these experts come from the same country, knowing the same criminal justice system and speaking the same language. Communication among them is easier, than for example in ESDP mission where experts can come from 27 different EU states, with 27 different systems and languages. Communication and understanding the linkages between the different elements of the criminal justice chain is the key to success. Everyone has to stay informed on the others’ work and understand where the delays/misunderstandings in the chain are.
The resource pool is, as such, not really an innovative modality, but it is interesting in terms of mapping global good practice in SSR to further study the opportunities and challenges that stem from using such a pool and in particular look at the Norwegian experience – including inter-institutional cooperation in Norway, recruitment and availability of staff, and pre-deployment training and selection.
Lessons identified on innovative approaches:
- Resource pool of experts is an interesting modality to explore in the world of SSR. It is not a unique modality but there are ways to enhance its effectiveness.
- Communication and understanding the linkages in the criminal justice chain are key factors for success.