On July 17, 2007 the Russian Federation and IBRD signed a Loan Agreement (Loan №4849-RU) for financing the Judicial Reform Support Project (JRSP), providing for a Loan to be granted to the Russian Federation in an amount of USD 50 million.
The BEA Foundation as the project Implementation Unit is to be in charge of technical functions under the Project, including procurement, finance management and Project fund disbursement.
The project development objective is to strengthen judicial transparency and efficiency in courts financed by the JRSP.
This will be done through the implementation of information systems and related judicial training aimed at transforming the judiciary into an institution that is more transparent, efficient, accountable and worthy of public trust and confidence. Pragmatically, the limited goals are to help (a) put the judicial modernization process on an appropriate path, (b) reformers build and sustain momentum for further change, and (c) establish a results framework whereby progress on project implementation and impact can be objectively and transparently assessed and publicly disseminated.
The key results indicators comprise:
i) Periodic stakeholder surveys verify an increase in user satisfaction with transparency in judicial functioning in selected courts;
ii) 100 percent of eligible decisions in the arbitration court system are published online within the prescribed period;
iii) 100 percent of eligible decisions of the CC, SC and selected CGJ (relating to decisions without limitations for publishing) under the project are published online within the prescribed period;
iv) Periodic surveys of judges and staff in courts covered by the JRSP show increasing satisfaction with use of new information systems compared to the 2006 baseline.
The JRSP will finance the following components:
A. Institutionalizing Judicial Transparency and Accountability
This component will finance: (i) periodic surveys of users of judicial services on access to, quality of and satisfaction with judicial services and enforcement of judicial decisions, and public dissemination of the survey results; (ii) research and analysis on further development of transparency, publication, openness and accessibility of judicial decisions, processes and practices, including obligatory publication of judicial decisions; and analysis on the introduction of modern information and communication technologies in judicial systems and on the further integration of the RF judicial system; (iii) the creation, implementation and dissemination of common case management standards, guidelines and processes; (iv) the development and piloting of criteria, indicators and a policy to assess and periodically report on the effectiveness of the judicial system, and related capacity-building; and a needs assessment for human capital development in the judiciary to inform policy and strategy updates; and (v) development and implementation of communications and change management strategies to promote judicial reform.
B. Harnessing ICT for Judicial Transparency and Effectiveness
The objectives of this component are to: (i) improve judicial transparency through the publication and public dissemination of judicial decisions at every level in the three branches of the judiciary; (ii) improve judicial effectiveness through the implementation of shared (or standardized) ICT solutions for such key activities as case flow management, document flow management, facilitating access to justice in remote locations, and judicial electronic archiving.
This component will finance activities for the CC, SC, JD/CGJ and the SAC to: (i) modernize, develop, and deploy integrated information systems for courts to facilitate document flow, record management, information collection, and internal knowledge sharing; (ii) improve public access to and availability of judicial information through enabling the online publication of judicial decisions and other relevant information; and (iii) more effectively link courts, Judicial Department offices, and relevant entities/facilities through integrated information systems by enhancing mobile capabilities of access to electronic information and video-conferencing.
C. Strengthening Human Capital
This component will finance (i) information technology-related education and training for judges and court personnel for the Constitutional Court, the Courts of General Jurisdiction, the Supreme Abritration Court and the Judicial Department, and (ii) knowledge exchange, including seminars, workshops etc. for the judiciary.
The training to be financed under the JRSP will supplement a much larger financial outlay for judicial education and training envisaged under the Russian government’s National Project for Education and the state budget.
D. Project Implementation and M&E
This component will finance: (i) logistical and secretarial support for the Inter-Agency Coordination Council and the operating costs of the Bureau of Economic Analysis (which is responsible for project implementation); (ii) expert technical ICT support for the judiciary and (iii) the implementation of a project results framework and M&E indicators.