Measurement of legal empowerment through the subjective perceptions of individuals

Porter, Robert B. (2014) Measurement of legal empowerment through the subjective perceptions of individuals. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal, 32 (3). pp. 213-221. ISSN 1461-5517

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Abstract

Legal empowerment is a central pillar of the law and development agenda and as such is the focus of many interventions. However, there are many challenges in relation to measurement for impact assessment and project appraisal. In particular the comparison of activities aimed at improving legal empowerment is difficult due to a lack of a measure that is applicable to different activities. This paper presents a model of subjective legal empowerment (SLE). SLE allows measurement of legal empowerment that is comparable across different groups, interventions and experience levels. A literature review and theoretical exploration look at the challenges to measurement of legal empowerment followed by an examination of the strengths and weaknesses of the SLE model. SLE is found to be a measure that can overcome many of the difficulties inherent in comparison to different legal empowerment interventions, with different groups, in different contexts.