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The Impact of Modernization of Justice on Court Efficiency in Costa Rica


  • Yuri Suarez Dillon Soares

    () (Interamerican Development Bank, Washington, DC)

  • Maria Michaela Sviatschi

    () (Interamerican Development Bank, Washington, DC)


Over the last decade, there has been growing awareness regarding the importance of transparent and effective courts to achieve economic development. However, many Latin American countries find that their judicial system have important deficiencies in terms of access and efficiency. This paper studies the effect of court modernization on caseload clearance rates in Costa Rica. The analysis exploits the fact that the modernization occurred at different points in time. This observed variation in the allocation of the program across time and space provides a potential instrument to identify the causal effect of the modernization on courts efficiency. We find that the program is associated with an increase of 5 percent in clearance rates and with a reduction of 75 dollars per case disposed. The results are robust to alternative specifications.

Suggested Citation

  • Yuri Suarez Dillon Soares & Maria Michaela Sviatschi, 2010. "The Impact of Modernization of Justice on Court Efficiency in Costa Rica," OVE Working Papers 0610, Inter-American Development Bank, Office of Evaluation and Oversight (OVE).
  • Handle: RePEc:idb:ovewps:0610

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    Cited by:

    1. Roberto Ippoliti & Massimiliano Vatiero, 2014. "An analysis of how 2002 judicial reorganisation has impacted on the performance of the First Instance Courts (Preture) in Ticino," IdEP Economic Papers 1408, USI Università della Svizzera italiana.
    2. Fatih Deyneli, 2012. "Analysis of relationship between efficiency of justice services and salaries of judges with two-stage DEA method," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 34(3), pages 477-493, December.

    More about this item


    Public Policy Evaluation; Justice; Court Efficiency; Difference in Differences; Propensity Score Matching; Costa Rica;

    JEL classification:

    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • C1 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General

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