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ECOLEX

Quito, Ecuador
Joined February 2012
Presence in: Ecuador

ECOLEX is a non profit organization that proposes and executes alternatives for the law and policies related to the sustainable development. ECOLEX proposes and implements sustainable development policies and legislative alternatives, on the basis of a practical and innovative conception of law, using a multidisciplinary and inter-sectoral approach.From its creation in 1998, ECOLEX has executed 50 plus projects, through agreements and contracts with several international organizations including USAID, CARE, FAO, UICN and national public organizations of Ecuador.Among ECOLEX’s institutional objectives, the following are the most noteworthy:

  • Contributing to reducing socio-environmental conflicts.
  • Providing advisory services in environmental policy making and legislation.
  • Promoting processes that involve communities and localities in sustainable development policy making and legislation.
  • Enhancing local capacity to take informed decisions about natural resource management.
  • Fostering interest in exercising environmental rights, access to justice, and the implementation of socio-environmental legislation.

In order to achieve its institutional objectives, ECOLEX distributes its activities in the following working units:

Policy and Legislation

This unit is in charge of studying and analyzing law enforcement in the area of sustainable development. It carries out its work in two areas: project planning and design and the formulation of environmental policy and legislative proposals.

Socio-Environmental Mediation
The socio-environmental mediation unit identifies and analyzes the country’s different socio-environmental conflicts and proposes solutions by applying alternative conflict resolution methods. This unit does its work through ECOLEX’s Socio-environmental Conflict Mediation Center.

Environmental Dispute
In order to promote the interest of institutions and the community in the subject of environmental legal processes, this unit designs new environmental dispute proposals, by advising natural persons and legal entities about environmental procedures and statutes.

Environmental Legal Advisory Services
Through this unit, ECOLEX advises institutions and companies for the purpose of apprising them of the regulations governing their activities so that they do not infringe environmental laws and statutes. Thus, ECOLEX strives to have the business sector perform the role that pertains to it in the country’s sustainable development.

Land Titling
This unit provides effective support for land ownership titling and legalization processes. The work consists of drawing up and providing training plans and programs for community leaders so they can create legally established centers, comunas, associations, and communities in general to exercise their community land ownership rights.

Local Government
In line with the new role of municipalities in Ecuador, this unit is a specialized entity for legal advice and technical assistance to build up municipal management in administrative, organizational, contracting, and production processes. It also provides advisory services and training to municipal technicians for drawing up land registration surveys (catastros), promoting their efficient administration in all stages (technical, physical, juridical, and economic).

Community Paralegals
This working unit is in charge of the Community Paralegal Training and Formation Program, which is aimed at building up the capacity of communities to exercise and defend their rights. Paralegals are community members who are trained by means of innovative techniques in the juridical principles of land owning, social organization, and natural resource management. They help find solutions to socio-environmental conflicts and with local participation support the drafting of regional and national policies. This initiative promotes the democratization of access to information, justice, the exercise of rights, and compliance with obligations, which are fundamental elements for building good governance.

Geographical Information Systems
This unit draws up spatial analysis methodologies for resolving land-owning problems, formalizing land titling, multi-purpose land registration systems (catastros), territorial management, and spatial modeling, among other related topics. Through this unit ECOLEX provides services and technical support to institutions and persons involved in these issues.

People Associated With This Organization

Manolo Morales

Ecuador  
ECOLEX
Joined December 2011
Manolo Morales is executive director of ECOLEX, an environmental law organization based in Quito, Ecuador. Manolo has expertise in the empowerment of indigenous and other marginalized communities so they may participate the in legal processes that affect their future. He has also pioneered a movement to train community paralegals within Ecuador.

Contributed Resources:

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Manolo Morales is the network champion (main point of contact) for ECOLEX.

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