|The present study analyses the prospects of reproducing successful international judicial systems. The analysis is based on a core assumption of regime theory that specific design plays a crucial role for an institution’s effectiveness. The paper scrutinizes the Inter-American human rights system’s and the Andean system’s legal practice whose institutional design is explicitly modeled on European prototypes: the Council of Europe’s human rights system and the judicial system of the European Union. However, apart from the institutional design no further similarities exist between the European institutions and their American counterparts. The latter have to deal with highly problematic background circumstances such as poor economic records, precarious democratic structures, shallow rule-of-law standards, as well as massive human rights violations. How promising is institutional reproduction against these background conditions? In order to answer this question, the legal practice of the Latin-American institutions is evaluated, using the indicators number of complaints, duration and outcome of proceedings, and compliance with rulings.
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