Washington International Law Journal


Malcolm M. Feeley examined cases of criminal justice reform in the United States, where reforms can be conceived and initiated in a very open structure, but implementation of the introduced reforms can be handed over to highly fragmented implementers. The story of mandatory videotaping of interrogations and accompanying changes in Japan demonstrates the reform process at the other end of the scale, where the members of the criminal justice establishment can exert a strong influence even at the conception and initiation stages, and have even stronger control at the implementation and routinization stages. We believe that Feeley’s theoretical framework can be expanded to be more generally applicable to court reforms outside the United States. This could be achieved by introducing the degree of openness of the policy-making process at the conceptualization and initiation stages, and by introducing a degree of fragmentation of the policy-making process at the implementation and routinization stages as central independent variables which determine the course of the reform.

First Page