The International Development Law Organization (IDLO) is an intergovernmental organization with a mandate to advance law and development. IDLO provides technical assistance and capacity development to enable governments and empower people to reform laws and strengthen institutions to promote peace, justice, sustainable development and economic opportunity.
IDLO prides itself on being independent and impartial, and on working in a transparent, accountable and non-partisan manner. IDLO’s Establishment Agreement provides that the organization shall not be influenced by political considerations in its activities, management, and staffing.
While the organization’s work is anchored in international standards and values, IDLO’s technical assistance seeks to align with local priorities, seek local support and ownership from a wide range of societal stakeholders, and work closely with local partners to meet local needs based on locally defined parameters.
IDLO takes into account the distinct nature of each country in which it works and invests in understanding the context. IDLO ensures it works in partnership with local institutions to identify the best entry points for programmatic intervention, while keeping in mind the needs of the end users of justice.
IDLO in Kenya
The Government of Kenya became a Member of IDLO in 2009. That same year, IDLO began its work in Kenya to provide technical assistance to the then Committee of Experts tasked with the development of the Constitution.
Since then, the organization has collaborated with the key agencies in the country responsible for the implementation of the Constitution, particularly relating to the Bill of Rights, land and environment, devolution, access to justice, public finance management and representation of the people. A key component of IDLO’s work also relates to advancing gender equality across the country and operationalizing the gender provisions contained in the Constitution.
IDLO’s support in Kenya has included strategic policy development, critical legislative review, expert technical advice, institutional strengthening and capacity building. In all projects undertaken by IDLO, the approach has been non-partisan, innovative and collaborative, rooted in partnerships, and driven by a meaningful understanding of the contextualized needs. From its inception, IDLO’s work has been undertaken at the formal request from and in collaboration with the Government of Kenya, and has been aimed at building a strong legal framework and enhancing access to justice for the Kenyan people. IDLO has no role or involvement in the decisions considered or taken by the institutions it has helped strengthen.
How IDLO is structured
As an intergovernmental organization, IDLO is made up of 31 Members which include 30 States covering all regions of the world and one multilateral organization. The Members are responsible for governing the organization, overseeing its management and approving its policies, plans and budget.
IDLO is headquartered in Rome, Italy, has 14 field offices, and is currently implementing 28 programs around the world. The organization was granted Observer status to the United Nations in 2001 and has representation offices to the United Nations in New York and Geneva. IDLO’s Country Office in Kenya is headed by a Country Director who provides overall leadership, accountability to external and internal stakeholders, and coordination with IDLO Headquarters.
IDLO is a member of the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) and reports publicly on all its programs and projects in accordance with IATI standards. Its programs, including those in Kenya, have been evaluated by independent experts and the findings are reported on its website.
Much of IDLO’s technical assistance work is implemented by technical experts who are competitively recruited on the basis of their substantive legal, thematic and procedural expertise. Upon specific request by a government institution, vacancies are advertised, interviews are jointly conducted, and successful candidates are hired with the express approval of the relevant institution.
IDLO’s Board of Advisers serves a purely advisory function. It is composed of legal and development experts who are elected by the Member Parties. Currently there are ten individuals from nine different nationalities. The Board of Advisers meets once a year to give general policy advice on issues relating to law and development.
The Board of Advisers is not involved in the selection, design or implementation of programs in any country or globally. That is the responsibility of IDLO’s Director-General who reports to the Member Parties, not to the Board of Advisers.
All members of the Board of Advisers, including the Chair, serve in their individual capacity as independent experts. They are not employees of IDLO, do not receive any remuneration from IDLO and do not speak for IDLO. The views of the Chair of the Board or of any other member of the Board do not reflect the views of IDLO.
IDLO’s International Advisory Council is not part of IDLO’s governance. It is an informal structure, composed of distinguished individuals who have agreed to lend their name to IDLO’s public outreach. They have no influence or role to play in the selection, design or implementation of any of IDLO’s programs.
- For further information on IDLO's specific program activities in Kenya, you can also visit here.
- For media enquiries relating to IDLO in Kenya, please contact Judit Arenas, Director – External Relations, firstname.lastname@example.org, mob +1-646-506-5996.