Workshop for the Afghanistan Independent Commission for Overseeing the Implementation of the Constitution (ICOIC)

The Max Planck Foundation successfully implemented the third workshop for the ICOIC in November 2018 in Kabul, Afghanistan, which dealt with the topic of constitutional implementation and its assessment

From 24 to 28 November 2018, the Foundation implemented the last of three planned workshops for the ICOIC on Selected Issues of Constitutional Implementation for the ICOIC staff. The Foundation staff and a local expert conducted it jointly.

The main focus of the workshop was on evaluating the implementation of the constitution. It started with a study of two types of constitutional implementation: transitional and long-term operational. As part of this introduction, the expert touched upon important issues of Islamic constitutionalism, culture and principles of constitutionalism. The participants discussed the constitutional implementation schedule in Afghanistan. The expert then elaborated on prerequisites for an effective system of protection of fundamental rights and freedoms.

A major part of the workshop was dedicated to studying a framework for an assessment of the implementation of laws, including constitutional performance. In this context, the trainer emphasised working with different types of indicators, indices, benchmarks, legal principles, internal and external goals as entry points for the purposes of evaluation. As part of this session a framework, which involves evaluating the implementation of legal principles across four different levels (instrumental, institutional, behavioural and outcome), was introduced and discussed with the participants. Further, mechanisms for gathering required data, for example survey results, event- and standard-based monitoring and statistics, were briefly presented to the participants. The trainers paid special attention to the Rule of Law Indicators (based on the UN Implementation Guide as well as on the indicators of the WJP Rule of Law Index). Upon request of some of the participants, the indicators of organisational performance were also briefly touched upon during the last day of the workshop.

This workshop, funded by the German Federal Foreign Office, was part of the project “Strengthening the Implementation of the Constitution”, which assists Afghan state institutions and civil society in addressing constitutional issues.