Development of the Internet for Asian Law
Access to World Law on the Internet
An Asian Development Bank Regional Technical Assistance Project
A Law Library on the Internet?
There is a huge and growing quantity of legal materials being made available on
the Internet's World Wide Web (WWW). Most of it is available for free access to
anyone with access to the Internet. Governments, courts and universities around
the world are making the legal information they produce available in this way.
There is already available the full texts of legislation from over 100 jurisdictions
(including the leading jurisdictions of the world), major collections of case
law, treaties, law reform reports and the texts of hundreds of law journals.
The quantity of available legal materials is growing rapidly. It is
a free access Internet Law Library.
The problem is that it is often very difficult to find the right
legal material from around the world or from a specific country when you
need it. Existing research tools on the Internet do not provide world-wide
coverage and are often difficult to use with enough precision for legal
What is DIAL?
DIAL (Development of the Internet
for Asian Law) is a project funded by the Asian
Development Bank (ADB) which aims to make it easier to find and use legislation-related
materials from this growing Internet Law Library. DIAL is a free access one-stop
starting point to the world of legal information on the Internet.
DIAL is a catalog and search facility of legal materials on the Internet
from all countries world-wide. DIAL does not add new legal materials to
the Internet - it provides better access to what is already there.
What's in DIAL?
DIAL contains two main components.
Catalog of links DIAL is based on a well-structured catalog of
links to thousands of the world's best law sites. Although DIAL is only in its
early stages of development as yet, it already links to legislation from over
100 jurisdictions world-wide, hundreds of law journals and much other material.
DIAL has material indexed by over 70 subjects.
Search engine As well as providing links to law sites, DIAL also
allows the full text (every word) of most of these sites to be searched. The
search facility already covers over 12 gigabytes of legal texts, and this is
growing rapidly. The search facility is built by a web robot being sent to sites
in the catalog.
What's special about DIAL?
Many additional DIAL features make it a powerful research resource:
- Powerful search features The search engine used by DIAL provides
a wide range of search options, from the simple entry of a couple of key terms
through to sophisticated Boolean and proximity searching. Search results are
sorted with the most relevant items presented first.
Precise scope searching Each page in DIAL's catalog contains
a search form which gives users the choice of searching the full text of
all sites, or of limiting the scope of the search by the location in the
catalog. This makes it possible to search over legislation from all countries
(but not other materials), or over any legal material from a particular
country, and similar precise searches.
Search this site It is possible to search only over the content
of a single site.
Stored searches Expert searches are `stored' as links in the catalog,
assisting users to do more expert searching.
Free access Access to DIAL is free and does not contain advertisements.
Asian focus DIAL has a special emphasis on the law of Asia-Pacific
countries - an Asian perspective on access to world law.
Who operates DIAL?
The Asian Development Bank has provided funding
for DIAL under a three year US$600,000 Law and Development Regional Technical
Assistance (RETA) from July 1999-2002. The ADB's Office of the General Counsel
oversees the Project.
DIAL is being carried out by an international project team from eight countries
led by DataLex Pty Ltd.
The Australasian Legal Information Institute (AustLII)
provides the host computer facilities, technical development and content
development for DIAL. AustLII is a joint facility of the Law Faculties
of the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS) and the University of New
South Wales (UNSW).
DIAL is the part of AustLII's World Law facility which provides special
emphasis on legislation-related materials. World Law (http://www.austlii.edu.au/links/)
covers case law, legal education and other legal materials as well.
The Regional Training Coordinator for DIAL (Philippines-based CD Technologies
Asia, Inc) is assisted by local Training Associates in the seven countries in
which in-country training in DIAL use will be provided.
The DIAL team is also seeking contributions from content Contributors
with expertise in the laws of particular countries or subjects.
Who benefits from DIAL?
Access to DIAL is free to all users, but DIAL is developed with the particular
aim to assist the Developing
Member Countries (DMCs) of the ADB in the process of law reform by providing
efficient access to a world-wide online library of legislation related materials.
DIAL's first priority target audience is the law reform and legal drafting personnel
of DMCs who do not otherwise have access to comparative law materials.
DIAL is also intended to benefit legal education, the legal profession
and the general public, particularly in Bank DMCs.
The DIAL team will provide in-country training in internet legal research to government
lawyers in selected DMCs: the People's Republic of China, Mongolia, Pakistan,
Indonesia, the Philippines, and Viet Nam. DIAL's Regional Training Coordinator
will establish DIAL Internet workstations at key locations in each country, and
will assist the local Training Associate in each country to provide ongoing local
training. All DIAL trainees receive ongoing support and assistance by DIAL's email
On-line training and user list
DIAL will include on-line training facilities accessible to all DIAL users
through the About DIAL page. User
Guides and self-directed learning are available on-line.
DIAL users can obtain on-line support and receive news on new DIAL content
and features by joining DIAL's email user list.
DIAL also includes DIALogue, an e-mail based facility by which Authorised Users
in DMCs can obtain make contact with, and obtain some assistance from, panelists
with expertise in particular legal subjects. The assistance might include brief
statements of general principles, and guidance on resources and further contacts.
Officials in DMCs are authorised as users by the ADB's Office of the General Counsel.
Further information about DIAL can be obtained from the DIAL home page
or from any of the following:
- DIAL team - firstname.lastname@example.org
+61 2 9514 3174 fax +61 2 9514 3168
- Professor Graham Greenleaf (Project Leader) - email@example.com
- Philip Chung (Manager, AustLII) - firstname.lastname@example.org
- CD Technologies Asia, Inc (Regional Training Coordinator)
Meyose G. Libunao (Contact Person)
- Office of the General Counsel, Asian Development Bank - email@example.com
+63 2 632 4879
An Asian Development Bank
Regional Technical Assistance Project