You are here

International Judicial Exchanges: Resources for U.S. Judges

Judges and court officials from around the world often seek to share information about their court systems, legal issues, and the judicial role. These exchanges offer valuable insights about the administration of justice and promote rule-of-law efforts being undertaken by local judiciaries and the international community. This webpage includes information that may be of interest to U.S. judges and court personnel who are hosting visiting delegations or participating in international conferences and technical assistance projects abroad. It includes links to articles and organizations as well as to informational materials that can be used during exchange programs.

International Judicial Relations Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States  (PDF)
The Federal Judicial Center works closely with the International Judicial Relations Committee. The committee coordinates the federal judiciary's relationship with foreign judiciaries, agencies, and organizations involved in promoting international judicial relations, expanding the rule of law, and improving the administration of justice. It is one of a network of committees established to support the Judicial Conference of the United States, the policy-making body of the federal courts.

U.S. Rule of Law Assistance: A Guide for Judges (PDF)
This guide provides an overview of how the U.S. government funds, designs and manages its rule of law initiatives and describes the maze of U.S. agencies and programs in this field.

A Primer on the Civil Law System (PDF)
An overview for judges and lawyers who want to expand their knowledge of the civil law tradition. The authors discuss the history of the civil law system, beginning with the Roman Empire. References are made to the civil law systems of France, Germany, Chile, and Brazil because of their strong influence on many other systems. The authors review the basic features of the modern-day civil law tradition and compare the civil law and common law systems.

Introduction to Civil Law Legal Systems (A Publication by INPROL—International Network to Promote the Rule of Law)
This publication introduces common law practitioners to some of the core features of the civil law system, including legal interpretation using a code-based system, legal education, the role of the judge in an inquisitorial system, and methods for gathering evidence in civil and criminal cases.

Practitioner's Guide: Common Law and Civil Law Traditions (A Publication by INPROL—International Network to Promote the Rule of Law)
This guide provides an overview of the civil law and common law legal traditions, with an emphasis on issues of particular importance for rule of law practitioners working in post-conflict and developing countries. The guide includes a discussion of the court system, the role of judges, prosecutors, and defense attorneys, and the appellate process.

Comparative Constitutions Blog
A collaboration between the Comparative Constitutions Project and the U.S. Institute of Peace, this blog regularly features content on new developments in comparative constitutional issues around the world.

Travel Information
The World Factbook
Compiled by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), this annually updated guide provides comprehensive political, economic, social, and geographic coverage of every nation-state. 

World Citizens Guide (intranet only)
Published by Business for Diplomatic Action, this brochure offers practical advice for Americans traveling abroad

Travelers' Health
Maintained by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this website offers a range of destination-specific health information, including current travel notices and general advice for seeking health care abroad.