Our Mission and Priorities


Both in the EU Member States and in other countries all over the world, civil and criminal justice systems face immense challenges in providing equal protection under the law, access to a fair legal process, adequate legal representation and information about legal rights and opportunities.

DAD objectives are to provide an enhanced institutional and policy capacity for a successful European integration process, especially in the area of justice and home affairs; to promote, support and monitor institutional reform to improve the transparency, fairness, accountability and efficiency of judicial systems by strengthening the rule of law and advancing human rights for all. Our aim is to foster policy development through interdisciplinary dialogue and partnership between public institutions, academia and social actors on key issues that will shape the future legal landscape.

We focus on developing innovative pathways to improve the quality of justice for vulnerable or marginalised groups, strengthening the voices of reform-minded prosecutors, and promoting greater understanding of the civil and criminal systems. We encourage collaboration among key justice stakeholders and support projects and organizations, promoting access to justice, human rights and the rule of law through legal and policy advocacy, empirical research and education, and piloting of effective practices.


Resocialisation of offenders in the EU




DAD is also involved in specific activities aimed at improving the situation in prisons and the resocialisation of offenders by exploring three distinct, yet closely related aspects:

1. Designing an instrument for regular prison monitoring, which includes oversight by international mechanisms and civil society actors, with a view to improve detention conditions in particular for vulnerable inmates.

2. Promoting the broader application of alternatives to imprisonment by studying the scope of their application, examining the role of communities and NGOs in their enforcement and collecting best practices. By reviewing the application of alternative penalties across the legal systems of the participating Member States, the project will outline innovative sanctioning approaches that satisfy three basic criteria:  resocialisation effect, active involvement of the society and potential to unburden the prison system.

3. Improving the situation of specific groups of vulnerable inmates (e.g. foreigners, drug users, minorities, juvenile offenders) through identification of such groups, examination of their problems, and collection and exchange of best practices for their treatment.

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