International Development Law Organization

EU engagement


With shared values of respect for democracy, equality, the rule of law and human rights, the European Union is an important strategic partner for IDLO. The global mandate and expertise of IDLO in different country contexts allows the Organization to engage proactively with EU Delegations across all regions and to identify opportunities for cooperation on shared priorities. IDLO’s EU engagement follows a ‘Team Europe’ approach, which is rooted in collaboration between EU institutions, Member States and partners.

IDLO is an EU pillar-assessed organization

In December 2022, IDLO successfully completed an EU pillar assessment, demonstrating the strength of IDLO’s internal policies and procedures, and making the partnership with the EU more flexible, dynamic and straightforward.

The successful pillar assessment confirms IDLO meets the European Commission’s requirements for indirect management. As a result, IDLO can receive EU funds through direct engagement with the European Commission or an EU Delegation, bypassing the competitive process. As a pillar-assessed Organization, the Commission entrusts IDLO with project implementation, allowing IDLO to apply its own policies and procedures.

IDLO programmes with the EU

The EU currently supports IDLO and the World Health Organization to implement the Global RECAP programme. The initiative works to strengthen the knowledge and capacity of public institutions, decision-makers and communities to develop and implement measures to promote healthy diets and physical activity that will help combat non-communicable diseases. Global RECAP is the first IDLO programme to receive EU funding following the pillar assessment.

Since 2019, the EU has also supported the Investment Support Programme for Least Developed Countries (ISP/LDCs), run by IDLO and the United Nations Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (UN-OHRLLS). In an effort to level the playing field between LDCs and foreign investors on investment-related matters, the programme provides legal and technical assistance, capacity building in investment negotiation and dispute settlement. EU funding has supported the programme’s work in several countries including Ethiopia, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritania, Rwanda, Senegal, Somalia, The Gambia and Uganda.

IDLO is also a member of the Team Europe Democracy (TED) Network, serving as co-lead of the Rule of Law and Access to Justice workstream of the Network’s Working Group on Accountability and Rule of Law. The TED Network consists of EU institutions, Member States and other stakeholders such as NGOs, civil society organizations and think tanks. It aims to facilitate the exchange of information and best practices to respond to global challenges to democracy and human rights, thereby improving collaboration on joint activities and messaging, and strengthening partnerships and policy dialogue.

Past IDLO programmes supported by the EU have included projects to promote the rule of law in Kyrgyzstan, strengthen child rights in Mongolia, reform the justice sector in the Philippines and modernize Alternative Dispute Resolution Centres in Somalia.