The dispute resolution methods; Conciliation, mediation, arbitration, negotiation, med-arb., fact finding, rent-a-judge and mini trial are all branches of the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) system which helps the disputants to resolve the disputes ending a conflict instead of focussing and be reluctant on the question, 'who is right and who is wrong' and 'who will win and who will lose' as we see in litigation.
Access to Justice and Justice Systems
The justice system, almost working in each country, consists of 'formal justice system' (formal systems) or non-ADR systems which "involves civil and criminal justice and includes formal state-based justice institutions and procedures, such as police, prosecution, courts (religious and secular) and custodial measures." 
Whereas 'informal justice system' (Informal systems, ADR Systems) refer to dispute resolution systems which do not fall within the scope of formal justice system (traditional, indigenous, customary, restorative, popular). Describing a traditional or indigenous system as 'informal' may imply that it is simplistic or inferior when in fact it may apply a highly developed system of rules and be quite formal in procedure. The term informal justice systems refer to dispute resolution mechanisms that fall outside the scope of the formal justice system. The term does not fit every circumstance as many terms exist to describe such systems (traditional, indigenous, customary, restorative, popular), and it is difficult to use a common term to denote the various processes, mechanisms and norms around the country." 
Get your grade
or your money back
using our Essay Writing Service!
Access to justice is one of the fundamental and essential characteristics of any legal system in the world which addresses and measure the effectiveness of a country's judicial system and varying degrees of distances between the judiciary and citizens of the country. It determines the efficacy of the judicial system in terms of the approach, attitude and mind-set of the people towards the system at large. If the judicial system is approached easily and equally to all sects of society, especially to the disadvantaged, it indicates that the system is very flexible with simple procedures and upholds the basic rights of every person. All this depends on various factors and indicators of path to justice which have been thoroughly discussed in this research. Certainly some barriers and obstructions exists in paths to justice, that associate with the 'access'. The study basically relate with the concept of access to justice by using alternative dispute resolution systems in developing countries instead of non-alternative dispute resolution systems (formal systems) where the people face obstructions in different forms and shapes.
1.3 Research Background
The researcher's Post Graduation dissertation "ADR Systems in Asian
Countries" was a preliminary attempt to identify the ADR systems, their use and support by legal systems. The continual interest in knowing these systems, in terms of awareness, barriers, legal support and NGOs work in promotion and development of these systems, encouraged the researcher to study further in depth to review and research these systems.
'Access to Justice', a very small sentence, used and propagated by politicians to get the votes in election, heaven of hopes and dreams of life to poor and needy people finding justice, source of earning for lawyers and solicitors and a sharp edge of sword to identify the right or wrong for jurists but an interesting topic for a student to get more knowledge and vast vision in dispute resolution systems.
The aim of the study is to identify the barriers in non-ADR systems which obstruct the poor to access them instead of using ADR systems which are accessible easily and timely in developing countries.
In order to achieve the aims of the study, the researcher has formulated the following objectives to identify:
Identify the barriers obstructing access to Non ADR justice;
Study of the traditional and in practice Alternative Dispute Resolution
Systems in developing countries;
Examine religious, social and cultural dispute resolution methods and their effectiveness;
Find out how ADR systems have been integrated in legal framework;
Always on Time
Marked to Standard
An attempt will be made to evaluate and measure the paths to justice, particularly in situations where power in terms of cultural and religious is exercised in enforcement of awards, a way which could be regarded as undemocratic.
Following tasks were identified and set for future study;
Table 1: Overview of the tasks and steps performed during the
The barriers obstructing access to justice to non ADR justice
Study and analysis of barriers by;
existing survey reports and case studies;
existing survey reports.
Traditional dispute resolution systems in context to cultures, religions and traditions
existing survey reports;
ADR awareness in general public and how justice is accessed
history of traditional systems;
existing survey reports;
The legal systems and their support to ADR systems
Findings, recommendations and conclusions
Analyse and identify the most effective
Methodology of Research adopted
The research methodology designed by the researcher focussed on different methods followed under the research guide lines of Robert Gordon University Aberdeen has been shown in the following diagram:
Diagram 1: Research Methodology
First Stage Second Stage
EXAMPLES EXAMPLES EXAMPLES
Most countries Mozam bique South Africa
Throughout Africa popular tribunal Family Group
Colonial Uganda conferencing
Post-independence Local Council courts Small Claims courts
Zimbabwe Rwanda Conciliation, Mediation and
Local courts Gacaca Tribunals Arbitration
Empirical Study Research
Findings & Analysis
In measuring access to Justice, a guidance has been taken from Hague Model of Measuring Access to Justice, which have primary goalÂ to develop, validate and disseminate a standard methodology for measuring the costs and quality that normally users of justice may expect when they travel on Paths to Justice.
1.6 Research Ethics
Ethical principles play a guiding role in determining the parameters and approach undertaken in research. Research conducted under the auspices of universities and other specialized research bodies ordinarily require approval by the appropriate ethics committee, especially if it involves client interviews or surveys. Research conducted elsewhere may also need to address ethical issues including:
confidentiality and privacy issues;
psychological, social or economic impacts of the research itself;
the particular needs of process participants (such as children); and
the reporting of sensitive material or research findings.
Research in dispute resolution processes raise special ethical issues as the research participants may be in a continuing dispute with each other. For example:
1.7 Research at First Stage
Research has been carried on into two stages. At first stage, when it was realized that research directions will not be fruitful, then they were converted into second stage which has been successful. What criteria and directions were followed in both stages, a brief detail is as following:
1.7.1 Desk Research and Literature Review
The methodology used in writing this thesis incorporated an extensive literature review relevant to Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) systems in developing countries. The contents reviewed include; developing countries, ADR systems in cultures and religion, legal systems, integration of ADR systems with legal systems, barriers in access to justice, role of NGOs and legal aid. The literature reviewed includes:
articles published in international journals;
books published in UK and internationally;
ADR organisations websites;
Research reports published by research organisation; and
Commentary by academics, conferences, seminar speeches and
recommendations published in the media (internet, print).
The study undertook selected country case studies that build upon previous studies, academic research, and in-depth expert and practitioner interviews and analysis incorporating the data gathered through the World Bank.
1.7.2 Identification of Stakeholders
The writer identified stakeholders to represent a wide range of views about ADR from selected developing countries representing courts, tribunals, government, statutory authorities, business, ADR institutes, law students and academia, with knowledge of ADR systems. Where it was judged that the stakeholder has less knowledge, he was provided notes about ADR systems (see appendix 17).
This Essay is
a Student's Work
This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by our professional essay writers.Examples of our work
The survey form and interview questions were kept same, as the questions were designed to examine a "big picture regarding ADR systems from stakeholders who have an integral role in governing, monitoring, funding, evaluating or studying the ADR systems in developing countries.
1.7.3 Interviewing Selected Stakeholders
The first critical methodological aspect of the thesis was designed to conduct interviews with key persons from those sectors where mostly disputes arise,
e.g. construction, family etc and where it was easy to contact and get the time to elicit qualitative data but it was noted that most stake-holders who were asked for interviews, were hesitant to give any appointment.
This reflects as following:
No awareness about ADR systems;
No interest in promotion of ADR systems;
Very busy persons.
The author conducted only two in-depth interviews at country level with selected focused persons. More than 50 persons were contacted for interviews before travelling to UAE, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia during April 2010. The questionnaire document was sent to each of the key stakeholder well in time but mostly refused later on. The format of letter appears at Appendix 3. Only two interviews were conducted whose names have been mentioned in table 1.
The stakeholders were told during the introductory meeting that interview process had been designed to follow-up questionnaire document to elicit quantitative data to be utilised in evaluating the provision of ADR systems in developing countries.
Each interview was recorded using a digital recording device, transferred to the writer's computer, transferred to a CD for record and analysed with other data collected from surveys. The interviewees were assured that their personal information will not be disclosed without their consent.
Table 1.2 : Interviewed from Focus Group
Interviewee's Name & Title
Mr. Wizarat Siddiqui
1.7.4 ADR Systems and Access to Justice, Survey
The second critical methodological aspect of the research thesis was to undertake a survey with the selected ADR stakeholders to collect quantitative and qualitative data to be utilised in analysing the provision of ADR systems. The questionnaire is part of the thesis as originally proposed and approved by RGU, a four part guided interview and survey questions, for eliciting the appropriate qualitative and quantitative data.
1.7.5 Questionnaire Design
The survey questionnaire was designed by the researcher keeping in view the research objectives and approved by RGU ethnic committee. The questionnaire was designed for ease of use and timeliness of completion and was deliberately kept to the minimum length (7 pages covering 60 questions) necessary to collect the appropriate data. The questionnaire was designed in four steps:
Awareness of ADR systems
ADR systems and integration in legal systems
Barriers in access to justice
Role of NGOs in awareness and promotion of ADR systems
The aim of questionnaire surveys was to collect quantitative and qualitative data on the functioning and use of ADR systems in developing countries, reasons why it is difficult for poor to use ADR schemes and possible indicators of performance.
Under the plan, it was focused to collect at least 500 questionnaires from the focused group members in person, through emails or web from developing countries, posting to:
b) ADR bodies in all developing countries;
c) National business associations;
d) NGO' working in ADR field;
e) Focused group members.
The questionnaire was posted and emailed to focused members of the community, requesting to fill the form offline or online. An introductory letter explaining about the background of survey with a brief introduction of ADR systems was posted to more than 500 to stakeholders while more than 1100 emails were sent two times, one requesting and one reminding, whose email addresses were collected from websites and ADR professionals bodies. The link of 'web form' (http://www.surveymethods.com ) was provided in the introductory letter to fill online, if willing, which remained active for six months on net. The response rate was less than 1%.
The following organisations and their branches, in almost all developing countries were sent survey forms for collection of data but there was no response. The reason may be that survey was managed by a student rather than some research institute; even they were contacted personally where it was possible:
Banking and Financial Services Institutes
Dispute Settlement Centres
High Court and Supreme Court Judges in defined jurisdictions
Law and Engineering Educational Institutes
A list of individuals participated in the qualitative phase of study has been mentioned in Appendix 14.
1.7.6 Field Progress Reports
The fieldwork was undertaken between 1st April 2010 and 31st December 2010. The monthly figure of completed work is following Table 1.3:
No of Questionnaires' received
No of Interviews, held
1.7.7 Survey Data Analysis
The data collected at stage one has been analysed in Appendix 8, which represents a basic understanding of awareness of ADR systems. The data collected at stage two has been also analysed in Chapter 7.
1.7.8 Travel and Exploration
The researcher worked on 'desk research and literature review' just after attending the first module on research methods during October 2008, getting the basic knowledge and identifying the headings, sub-headings, i.e. primary stage of data collection. After six months primary data collection, the writer travelled to three countries, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan on its own expenditures, for exploratory interviews and carrying on survey. The researcher faced the following problems during the primary stage of data collection:
Language barriers in Arabian Countries in exploring the traditional and cultural dispute resolution methods where English is not understood at primary level.
When visited the libraries, the most available literature related with research subject was in Arabic, no English versions.
When contacted some local Arabians using the services of an interpreter, it was observed that people have no awareness about ADR systems but only know about "Tahkeem", the way of justice mentioned in Holy Book "Qur'an" which is like to mediation and is common at primary stage linked with mosques, mostly.
The researcher visited Pakistan, a country where English is 2nd language, had meetings with the stake holders in Faisalabad, Lahore and Karachi, asked stake holders for interviews and delivered questionnaires, personally. There was a little success in getting feedback. The results have been discussed in chapter 7. The personal views of focused members were:
People have the concept of resolving their disputes by asking a third neutral person calling it "Punchayat or Jirga";
There is no support for "Jirga or Punchayat" in legal system of Pakistan, the validation of the awards or enforcement. Enforcement is only by the pressure of community members;
When contacted some judiciary members through some friends, after discussions, it has been concluded that judges have no interest in these systems as their powers and status is affected. Their vision was that if they accept these systems and help the people to resolve their disputes at primary level, then who will come to the courts;
Before leaving for Pakistan from UK, the researcher sent email to all law colleges in Pakistan offering free lecture on "Alternative Dispute Resolution System" but there was not a single response;
When the Rotory Club, Faisalabad Chapter whose members are mostly
businessmen, came to know about researcher's arrival in Faisalabad and his research project, they asked the researcher to deliver a lecture, which the members enjoyed and asked to help in establishing a mediation/arbitration centre in Faisalabad and provide training, which was refused due to shortage of time. The researcher plans to do it but after submission of this thesis.
During the stay in Karachi, visited "Karachi Mediation Centre" and asked for help in primary data collection but a very poor response was given due to insufficient resources in research, although the centre claims to have a "research cell".
1.8 Research at Second Stage
The researcher discussed the results of his visit with his supervisors after arrival in UK and it was concluded after a long discussion in a joint meeting with Dr. Sara Christi, to divert the direction of research towards "Empirical Research" with the following reasons:
The research is not financed by any professional body or organization,
so financially, it is difficult for the researcher to target further countries
for travel and collect the primary data;
The primary barrier in-depth research was identified, the language and
travel, to targeted countries to study at root level.
Absence of co-operation from NGO's and professional bodies who were
approached by the author by email and post for help in study.
Poor response in submission of questionnaires online or offline from
focused community members and stake holders where more than 1100 email were sent 3 times and 500 questionnaire were handed over or posted, conclude that either people have no interest in such types of survey or level of awareness of ADR systems in those (developing) countries is not good. The emails addresses cannot be disclosed in this research.
The professional bodies of targeted countries have limited resources to
develop awareness in the their country and mostly they work for International disputes. Arbitration system and laws in United Arab Emirates is an example where mostly foreign firms follow the English practice while at primary level, citizens follow their own religious laws and use traditional dispute resolution system "Tahkeem".
It was also concluded to focus and concentrate the research in depth to only specified jurisdictions.
It was further advised by the supervisors, to stop the practice to get interviews and travel for collection of data and to focus on literature review in terms of "Empirical Research".
1.9 Why Empirical Study?
'Empirical Research' is research that is based on experimentation or observation, i.e. Evidence.Â Such research is often conducted to answer a specific question or to test a hypothesis (educated guess). Empirical research is a way of gaining knowledge by means of direct observation or experience. It is used to answer empirical questions, which must be precisely defined and answerable with dataâ€¦..Usually; a researcher has a certain theory regarding the topic under investigation. Based on this theory some statements, or hypotheses, will be proposed. From these hypotheses predictions about specific events are derived. These predictions can then be tested with a suitable experiment. Depending on the outcomes of the experiment, the theory on which the hypotheses and predictions were based will be supported or not." 
Actually, "there are many organized and systematic ways of gaining empirical knowledge. These empirical ways of knowing include:
It is also sometimes useful to distinguish between basic (or theoretical),
The concept of empirical research, on which this research has been planned, is the basic tool used to gather three major sources of information: perception, validation and documentation according to the concept of 'triangulation', as illustrated in Figure 2 below.
Figure 2: Concept of Triangulation for the ADR 
Interviews with stakeholders (project and government staff, donors, CO beneficiaries, public, NGOs, etc.)
Surveys, polls, questionnaires
Statistical analysis of data and indicators
Field visits, direct observation
In-depth thematic studies
Focus group interviews
Quantitative assessment of trends using secondary data sources
Basic documentation (programming documents)
Monitoring and evaluation reports, progress reports
Documentation on perceived success in reports, news, media
Existing documentation from external sources
1.10 Research Criteria Adopted
The researcher has adopted 'Empirical Research" in his thesis because "empirical research relies on experience or observation alone, often without due regard for system and theory. It is data-based research, coming up with conclusions which are capable of being verified by observation or experiment.
We can also call it as experimental type of research. In such a research it is necessary to get at facts firsthand, at their source, and actively to go about doing certain things to stimulate the production of desired information. In such a research, the researcher must first provide himself with a working hypothesis or guess as to the probable results. He then works to get enough facts (data) to prove or disprove his hypothesis. He then sets up experimental designs which he thinks will manipulate the persons or the materials concerned so as to bring forth the desired information. Such research is thus characterised by the experimenter's control over the variables under study and his deliberate manipulation of one of them to study its effects. Empirical research is appropriate when proof is sought that certain variables affect other variables in some way. Evidence gathered through experiments or empirical studies is today considered to be the most powerful support possible for a given hypothesis.' 
This empirical research attempt to answer the research questions: what are the key cases and research features that lead to success?
No doubt, researchers face a wide range of challenges in the field of ADR and it is not easy to access research subjects in the dispute resolution field. The reason may be that either this is a new field to develop and academic infrastructure for knowledge acquisition and sharing are not too much or the scholars, experts, and practitioners have no access to resources to promote it.
The Hague Model of Access to Justice which is to develop and test a methodology for measuring costs of paths to justice and the quality (both in terms of procedures and outcomes) of paths to justice and the barriers to access to justice that the users may experience and perceive, will be used in analyzing the results obtained from empirical studies.
1.11 Limitations of the Research Report
The research has been made by a student of RGU, Aberdeen by its own resources. Accordingly, this paper does not purport to be a definitive, nor exhaustive, analysis of all of the issues relevant to an account of ADR in developing countries, even does not cover all developing countries where as the role of NGO's topic has been deleted due to the restriction of volume of thesis.
1.12 Expected Research Outputs
What expected outcomes are?
Study about of Alternative Dispute Resolution Systems, traditional and non-traditional, how people use them and their effectiveness in the communities;
Findings of use of Cultural and Religions use of dispute resolution methods;
Identification of integration of ADR systems into legal systems;
Assessment of awareness of ADR methods and development tools;
Assessment of barriers in non ADR systems.
1.13 Evaluation of the Study
The researcher has used a mixture of evaluation techniques to answer the research questions itself in a credible way with validity, subject to time and resource constraints in his findings in next chapters." 
Sample Surveys, Questionnaires
Well to statistical comparison as discussed in chapter 7;
Exact information on "What Happened?"
Keeping simple and manageable information handled by the research Institutes.
Desk Review/ Analysis of Existing Data
At initial stage the researcher conducts a thorough desk review to synthesize relevant available reports and documents. Further desk review will most likely be required once the research is finalized and the thematic thrusts have been determined.
Field Visits / Direct Observation
Field visits are useful to validate perceived development results and complement other evaluation techniques. The research always contains some field visits, to validate and/or visualize perceived success stories or failures.
Direct observation techniques allow for a more systematic, structured analysis, using well-designed observation record forms. It may provide a richer understanding of the subject studied and reveal patterns many informants may be unable to describe adequately.
The data has been retrieved from other research published sources.
Quantitative assessment of trends using secondary data sources may be used to validate already known stakeholder perceptions.
To be used selectively for the research obtained from other published research sources.
'Despite the challenges, this thesis concludes that engaging with informal justice systems is necessary for enhancing access to justice for the poor and disadvantaged. Ignoring such systems will not change problematic practices present in the operations of informal justice systems. It is of course very important to take all concerns seriously. Any initiatives undertaken should work towards gradually enhancing the quality of dispute resolution and addressing the weaknesses faced by informal justice systems. Such initiatives should be part of a broader, holistic access to justice strategy, which focuses on achieving the broader goal of enhancing access to justice by working with both formal institutions and informal justice systems.'  and 'It is important to remember that situations vary from country to country, therefore there are no templates that identify generic entry points for access to justice programming. The challenge is to learn from other experiences (in particular, those from developing countries that have overcome similar challenges) but also to provide customized solutions for particular situations. A review of existing initiatives and potential recommendations for engagement with informal justice systems are provided in the next chapters of this thesis." 
1.14 Thesis Structure
The thesis is structured as follows:
Chapter 1, outlines the aims and objects of the study, research
methodology and sets out the definition of developed countries and how
they have been categorised, discuss the methodology adopted in this
research and what criteria has been adopted to make this research successful;
Chapter 2, is an overview of the characteristics of access to justice
systems, and how it is measured in different contexts.
Chapter 3, examines concept of "access to justice", in cultures and it is
used to resolve the disputes using the cultural traditions.
Chapter 4, of this thesis reviews the major religious system, concept of
justice in religions and how people use religion in their daily life to
resolve the disputes.
Chapter 5, describes about operational barriers in access to non
Chapter 6, describes about Structural / Institutional barriers in
access to non ADR systems.
Chapter 7, analyze the barriers in context with access to justice
Chapter 8, Use of ADR Systems in Context of Barriers in Justice
Chapter 9, Conclusions and recommendations.
Chapter 10, Bibliography
This thesis also contains a number of appendices:
Appendix 1: List of Developing countries
Appendix 2: Email sent to professionals
Appendix 2: Survey form
Appendix 3: Introduction of ADR Systems
Appendix 4: Implementation of Religious Laws in Several Countries
Appendix 5: Characteristics of Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis
Appendix 6: Comparison of Features of Western and Traditional Mediation
Appendix 8: Survey Analysis at First Stage, which later on was postponed
Appendix 9: Lecture Slides
Appendix 10: List of Parties to the New York Convention 1958
Appendix 11: List of UNICITRAL Model Law Countries
Appendix 12: Selected Arbitral Institutions
Appendix 13: List of Participants at stage 1
Appendix 14: Summary of Characteristics of ADR Systems
Appendix 15: Corruption Index
Appendix 16: Human Development Report
Appendix 17: Stakeholders
Appendix 18: Instant Scan
Appendix 19: Quick Scan
Appendix 20: Thorough Scan
1.15 Definition of a Developing Country
A developing country is a country that has low standards of democratic governments, industrialization, social programs, and human rights guarantees that are yet to develop to those met in the west. It is often a term used to describe a nation with a low level of material wellbeing. Despite this definition, the levels of development may vary, with some developing countries having higher average standards of living.' 
The application of the term developing country to any country which is not developed is inappropriate because a number of poor countries have experienced prolonged periods of economic decline. Such countries are classified as either least developed countries or failed states.
The United Nations Statistics Division,  in its data distinguishes between developed and developing countries but notes that:
The designations "developed" and "developing" are intended for statistical convenience and do not necessarily express a judgement about the stage reached by a particular country or area in the development process. 
Also the UN notes that, There is no established convention for the designation of "developed" and "developing" countries or areas in the United Nations system. In common practice, Japan in Asia, Canada and the United States in northern America, Australia and New Zealand in Oceania, and Europe are considered "developed" regions or areas. In international trade statistics, the Southern African Customs Union is also treated as a developed region and Israel as a developed country; countries emerging from the former Yugoslavia are treated as developing countries; and countries of eastern Europe and of the Commonwealth of Independent States (code 172) in Europe are not included under either developed or developing regions.
1.16 What Measurement and concept of development
The development of a country is measured with statistical indexes such as income per capita (per person) (GDP), life expectancy, the rate of literacy, et cetera. The UN has developed the HDI, a compound indicator of the above statistics, to gauge the level of human development for countries where data is available.
Developing countries are in general countries which have not achieved a significant degree of industrialization relative to their populations, and which have, in most cases a medium to low standard of living. There is a strong correlation between low income and high population growth.
To moderate the euphemistic  aspect of the word developing, international organizations  have started to use the term Less economically developed country  (LEDCs) for the poorest nations which can in no sense be regarded as developing. That is, LEDCs are the poorest subset of LDCs. This also moderates the wrong tendency to believe that the standard of living in the entire developing world is the same.
1.17 Limitations of the term 'developing country'
There is criticism of the use of the term 'developing country'. The term implies inferiority of a 'developing country' compared to a 'developed country', which many such countries dislike. It assumes a desire to 'develop' along the traditional 'Western' model of economic development which many countries. The term 'developing' implies mobility and does not acknowledge that development may be in decline or static in some countries, particularly those southern African states worst affected by HIV/AIDS. The term implies homogeny between such countries which vary wildly. And implies homogeny within such countries when wealth (and health) of the lowest and uppermost groups varies wildly.
1.18 Developing Countries
Developing countries can be classified with reference to income per capita and economic conditions as following:
Â Â Â Â Â High income Â Â Â Â Â Upper-middle income Â Â Â Â Â Lower-middle income Â Â Â Â Â Low income
Â Â Â Â Â Advanced economies Â Â Â Â Â Emerging and developing economies (not least developed) Â Â Â Â Â Emerging and developing economies (least developed) Classifications by the IMF and the UN
1.19 Geographical Coverage of this Thesis
The geographical coverage of this thesis focus the following developing countries, in general but references and examples of other countries have also been mentioned: