Access to Law : is it here to stay?

Transparency of legal procedures is one of the tenets of a well functioning democracy. Until the arrival of the Internet, legal professionals and the public could only obtain primary sources of law through packages sold by commercial publishers. Since then the "open access to law" movement, supported by legal information institutes, has fostered access to primary sources by making legal documents available online in the public domain. Promoters of free access to law have generally argued that making legal information widely available to the public benefits society at large by, for example, enabling transparency and reducing barriers to access to justice. This project aims to test these hypotheses by means of a comparative analysis of access to law experiences in West and Southern Africa, Asia, Australia, the Pacific and North America. Researchers will also assess the value added to legal information by the legal information institutes, and the various business and revenue models adopted by the institutes for their sustainability.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Friday, April 24, 2009

End Date

Sunday, July 24, 2011


24 months

IDRC Officer

Fourati, Khaled

Total funding

CA$ 358,200


North of Sahara, South of Sahara, Central Asia, Far East Asia, South Asia, Australia

Project Leader

Ivan Makonavo


Université de Montréal

Institution Country


Institution Website