This book addresses critical questions about how legal development works in practice. Can law be employed to shape behavior as a form of social engineering, or must social behavior change first, relegating legal change to follow as ratification or reinforcement? And what is legal development's source of legitimacy if not modernization? But by the same token, whose version of modernization will predominate absent a Western monopoly on change? There are now legal development alternatives, especially from Asia, so we need a better way to ask the right questions of different approaches primarily in (non-Western) Asia, Africa, the Islamic world, plus South America. Incoming waves of change like the 'Arab spring' lie on the horizon. Meanwhile, debates are sharpening about law's role in economic development versus democracy and governance under the rubric of the rule of law. More than a general survey of law and modernization theory and practice, this work is a timely reference for practitioners of institutional reform, and a thought-provoking interdisciplinary collection of essays in an area of renewed practical and scholarly interest. The contributors are a distinguished international group of scholars and practitioners of law, development, social sciences, and religion with extensive experience in the developing world.
'This book is a welcome and important addition to the study of law and social change. The collection offers critical and novel perspectives on rule of law promotion. The contributors, relying mainly upon detailed case studies from a range of countries in Africa, Asia and the Americas, offer a wealth of information and analysis on issues relevant to legal reform, with the underlying message that law and its wider context must be studied together.' Julio Faundez, University of Warwick, UK 'Serious students of modernization, rule of law, and efforts to engineer legal change will want to read this book. Particularly strong features include multiple chapters on specific countries or areas targeted for legal development and inclusion within the impressive list of contributors of scholars from inside target countries.' John Reitz, University of Iowa, USA ’This is an indispensable collection of essays investigating the complex linkages in non-Western societies between legal development and social change, and whether either is a pre-condition for the other. The thought-provoking essays survey the themes of rule of law, legitimacy and institutional reform in these societies and investigate the important question of whose version of modernization and development is the more appropriate. This comprehensive work is a must-have� for any scholar of contemporary legal development and of the rule and role of law in the developing world.’ Alan Khee-Jin Tan, National University of Singapore, Singapore ’Anyone interested in the roles law can and cannot play, should or should not play in development, and what development does and does not mean, should read this book. It gives a clear overview of the issues and brings together quite a few points of view and experiences from around the world. Whatever one thinks of the reinvented concept of, or renewed discussions about, law and development�, one is sure to find some good arguments in this book.’ Gary F. Bell, Nationa