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The Impact of Improving Access to Justice on Conflict Resolution: Evidence from Peru


  • Yuri Suarez Dillon Soares

    () (Interamerican Development Bank, Washington, DC)

  • Maria Michaela Sviatschi

    () (Interamerican Development Bank, Washington, DC)

  • Raul Andrade

    (GRADE, Lima, Peru)

  • Jimena Montenegro


During the 1990s Peru greatly expanded access to formal judicial services in underserved districts through the construction and staffing of justice modules—physical structures which housed courts, prosecutors and public defenders. The intervention was designed to improve judicial coverage for populations located far from important urban centers where most of the courts are located. Using a specialized survey and matching techniques, we find that improving access to formal justice significantly shifts the resolution of conflicts away from informal mechanisms and toward the newly provided formal mechanisms; increases the use of complementary services, such as the use of lawyers; improves the perception of residents regarding social mores and the law; and ultimately marginally reduces the incidence of self-reported conflicts. We find evidence that the treatment also improves outcomes for residents in the area of child support conflicts, although in other types of conflicts we find no impact on outcomes.

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  • Yuri Suarez Dillon Soares & Maria Michaela Sviatschi & Raul Andrade & Jimena Montenegro, 2010. "The Impact of Improving Access to Justice on Conflict Resolution: Evidence from Peru," OVE Working Papers 0810, Inter-American Development Bank, Office of Evaluation and Oversight (OVE).
  • Handle: RePEc:idb:ovewps:0810

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Marco Caliendo & Sabine Kopeinig, 2008. "Some Practical Guidance For The Implementation Of Propensity Score Matching," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(1), pages 31-72, February.
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    More about this item


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

    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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