Impact Assessment of the Facilitadores Judiciales Programme in Nicaragua
Facilitadores Judiciales is a programme run by the Organization of the American States and the Nicaraguan judiciary. In 2010, facilitators were recruited and trained in many but not all urban municipalities. This presented an opportunity for a natural experiment to assess the impact of the programme. In our theoretical framework the impact is related to improved access to justice which is one of the prerequisites for peace and development. Before and after quantitative and qualitative studies were conducted in intervention and control areas. The quantitative results show confirmation of some of the hypothesized effects of the programme. Other effects are indicated by the numerous in-depth interviews but are not substantiated by hard data. In the communities where facilitators were introduced the people report fewer legal problems. The facilitators are decreasing the costs of justice. Achieving amicable solutions and promotion of peace and social cohesion is another example of the programme's impact.