The Failure of Institutional Reform? The Case of Indonesia’s Corruption Eradication Commission and the Supreme Court

Institutional reform is an important approach in the discussion on law reform. For many institutions working on law reform, ranging from country governments and non-governmental organizations, it was an approach that often replaces phrase ‘law reform’ itself. However, there are major weaknesses that lie behind institutional reform. First, institutional reforms tend to fail to measure the impact on the delivery of justice to the society. Second, institutional reform tends to ignore the politics of law reform, which is highly related to the actors and how constitutional bodies interact in the framework of constitutional arrangements. This paper will examine how the institutional reform approach might have failed in law reform in Indonesia that started in 1998. The cases of the Corruption Eradication Commission and the Supreme Court will be used to assess how far the institutional reform has had an impact on public trust over state institutions and constitutional ideas of the rule of law