Upgrading Democracy: ‘Soft Laws’ and the Ombudsman

April 17, 2017 - 10:42am

In his paper, “Upgrading Democracy: ‘Soft Laws’ and the Ombudsman”, Roy Lee (Legislative Counsel in Guernsey and barrister & solicitor admitted in New Zealand and Australia) makes an argument for the creation of the Office of the Ombudsman in order to promote and strengthen democratic governance. Although soft law institutions like the Ombudsman have no power to make legally binding decisions, they are essential in ensuring that public officials remain accountable, transparent and fair in their actions and decisions. Soft laws are essential because they do not rely on litigation, the Courts or even a written Constitution. Their ultimate aim is to infuse democratic values into the day-to-day decision-making and actions of public officials. You can find the full paper from INPROL Member Roy Lee here via the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs, and contact him with comments and questions via the INPROL messenger function.

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