October 26, 2016

The Legal Empowerment Leadership Course Experience

by Namati in General 2016 Legal empowerment leadership course

For five days in October, sixty-one justice practitioners from twenty-five countries came together at the Central European University (CEU) in Hungary for the second annual Legal Empowerment Leadership Course. The course is the only one of its kind in the world. It brings together leaders dedicated to legal empowerment to reflect on history, strategy, and…

October 25, 2016

India’s Tadri Port Project in Troubled Waters

by Mahabelshwar Hegde and Krithika Dinesh in Environment Tadri fishing harbor which provides sustenance to a large fishing community (photo:

In the Indian state of Karnataka, a large port project has begun to flounder under the weight of a faulty impact assessment, legal violations, data disparities and procedural lapses. The biggest challenge to any major project is its environmental credentials. Recently, the Prime Minister’s Project Monitoring Group (PMG) revealed that 40 percent of the 419…

October 24, 2016

The Economist: “Poor Law – The Rise of Paralegals”

by The Economist in Community Paralegals / Grassroots Legal Advocates, General Mapping Gallery Image 3

GODFREY EBREYU has a captive audience, in every sense. A throng of inmates has gathered in the prison yard in Gulu, northern Uganda, as he explains the intricacies of plea-bargaining. Like 55% of prisoners in Uganda, these men are awaiting trial; some have been here for years. They are still asking questions when, at four…

September 22, 2016

Video: When Land Laws are Not Enough, Enter the Barefoot Lawyers

by Place - Thompson Reuters Foundation in Community Land Protection, Community Paralegals / Grassroots Legal Advocates screenshot-2016-09-22-15-36-51

In this two-minute animation, Namati’s CEO, Vivek Maru, explains how “barefoot lawyers” help connect communities with justice. The video was produced by the Thompson Reuters Foundation for their new initiative, Place. Through exclusive reportage, analysis, commentary, photographs and video, Place explores the complex social, economic and political effects of inadequate land rights – from environmental…

September 16, 2016

Struggles in Suriname: Learning from Namati’s Community Land Rights Database

by Dorian Martinez in Community Land Protection, Land & Natural Resources capture

In January 2016, a headline grabbed me. After several months of volunteering with Namati’s Community Land Rights CaseBase, I came across news of an important legal victory for indigenous land rights in Suriname, a country I knew virtually nothing about. I had been collecting case law concerning community and indigenous land rights from across Latin…

September 15, 2016

New Handbook for Environment Justice Practitioners in India

by Namati in Environment Chandrakanth Patgar (32) stands near the perimeter wall of the Naik Hospitalities development in Kagal, Karnataka State, India. Chandrakanth is one of a group of two dozen villagers who are 
working with the area's Namati paralegal to try to resolve a dispute with the developers.

Handbook on Legal and Administrative Remedies for Community Level Environment Justice Practitioners in India   The Centre for Policy Research-Namati Environmental Justice Program has produced an indispensable new handbook that helps environment justice practitioners in India to identify and use appropriate legal clauses and institutional routes in their work.  Environment justice practitioners, or grassroots environment paralegals,…

August 17, 2016

Why Norway Should Lead a Global Fund for Legal Empowerment

by Vivek Maru in Community Paralegals / Grassroots Legal Advocates, Governance, Post-2015 Agenda Norway flag

This article was originally published in the Norwegian news outlet, Aftenposten, on August 12, 2016. The Norwegian version can be read here.    Since World War II many countries have come to respect fundamental liberties, at least by the letter of the law. But for billions of people around the world those laws aren’t worth…

August 14, 2016

Liberia is at a crossroads: recognising land rights can safeguard against violence

by Jennifer Duncan and Jaron Vogelsang in Community Land Protection, Governance, Land & Natural Resources Liberia

This article was originally published by Thompson Reuters Foundation.   The government of Liberia has an unprecedented opportunity to pass progressive land reform legislation that could positively impact millions of people, but the window of opportunity is rapidly closing. If Liberia’s legislature doesn’t vote to adopt the draft Land Rights Act before it goes on recess…

August 9, 2016

Leadership in Action

by Namati in General Vivek Maru hero image

In June, SiriusXM’s Business Radio program, Leadership in Action, interviewed Namati’s founder and CEO, Vivek Maru. The audio from the show is now available below. Business Radio features world-renowned and distinguished executives, entrepreneurs, innovators and other experts as special hosts and guests. Broadcasting from Wharton’s Ivy League campus and Silicon Valley, Business Radio covers every aspect of business in…

August 4, 2016

India’s Coastal Law Got a Skewed Review – and Now, an Opaque Revamp

by Meenakshi Kapoor in Environment The Aghanashini River and Gajani wetlands. Karnataka State, India.

By allowing construction closer to the sea, waiving building regulations for coastal towns and limiting decentralisation to states, coastal conservation and livelihood protection in India have been swept aside. In June this year, the Ministry of Environment Forests and Climate Change disclosed the report of the committee constituted to review the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ)…

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