The Judicial Assistance Project built and sustained a more democratic culture among Kazakh citizens and target institutions by supporting its judiciary’s modernization efforts and built public demand for a fair and transparent judiciary. Phase II of the project focused on facilitating expansion of a court video-recording system by Kazakh vendor IZET to 32 courts and Almaty City Court. The program included a considerable cost-share from the Supreme Court toward purchase of video-recording systems, a testament to the political will for reform in Kazakhstan and the partnerships that USAID has developed with the Kazakh judiciary.
The project assisted IZET in completing the design of its video-recording software, helped design and deliver 16 regional and two specialized courses to court staff on the use of the system, and monitored the six target courts that received the Special Recording Systems (SRS) system in Phase I to gauge the system’s impact on the official protocol (i.e., court record), court processes, and support for widespread use of video recording. Further, the project established a hotline to build court staff capacity and skills to troubleshoot and resolve technical issues on site. Finally, it installed six integrated voice-disguising units in Phase I target courts. According to survey respondents, video-recording systems improve the transparency of legal proceedings, reduce corruption, and improve the level of professionalism among all parties.
- Public trust in video-equipped courts rose 21%, also according to survey respondents.
- 33 court video-recording systems by vendor IZET were installed in other courts. The project helped design the system and trained court staff on how to use it.
- Conducted 16 regional and two specialized courses on IZET systems for 60 courts throughout Kazakhstan.
- Trained 581 justice sector personnel on use of new court technologies.
- 33 calls to project-supported hotline built system administrators’ capacity to effectively troubleshoot systems issues.
Project Duration: 2005 − 2009.