Legal mobilisation is a tool available to paralegal and advocacy groups, to achieve legal empowerment by supporting a marginalized issues of a stakeholder, in negotiating with the other concerned agencies and other stakeholders, by strategic combined use of legal processes along with advocacy, media engagement and social mobilisation. As per Frances Kahen Zemans (1983) the Legal mobilisation is "a desire or want, which is translated into a demand as an assertion of one's rights".
According to Lisa Vanhala (November 2011) Legal mobilisation in its narrowest sense, may refer to high-profile litigation efforts for (or, arguably, against) social change or more broadly, term legal mobilisation has been used to describe any type of process by which an individual or collective actors invoke legal norms, discourse, or symbols to influence policy or behavior. This typically means that there are policies or regulations to mobilize around and a mechanism by which to do so. Legislative activity does create an opportunity for legal mobilization. The courts become particularly relevant when petitioners have grounds to file suit.
History of conceptualisation
The use of the law and legal systems by disadvantaged people to contest the unfair distribution of power and resources is a real-world phenomenon that predates and exists independently of international law and justice assistance.
Tool to ensure statutory intervention
Particularly in circumstances where traditional power resources, in terms of bargaining power and worker solidarity, are not firmly established, Use of the legal mobilisation clearly offers important additional tactics.
- Cotula, Lorenzo (1 Jan 2007). Legal Empowerment for Local Resource Control: Securing Local Resource Rights Within Foreign Investment Projects in Africa. IIED, 2007. p. 48. ISBN 9781843696674. Retrieved 24 November 2014.
- Zemans, Frances (Sep 1983). "Legal Mobilization: The Neglected Role of the Law in the Political System". The American Political Science Review. USA: American Political Science Association. 77 (3). JSTOR 1957268.
- Vanhala, Lisa (November 2011). "Legal Mobilization". Political Science. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/obo/9780199756223-0031. ISBN 9780199756223. Retrieved 24 November 2014.
- Pettinicchio, David (February 4, 2013). "The When, Why, and How of Legal Mobilization". Mobilizing Ideas. Retrieved 24 November 2014.
- odi.org. "The politics of legal empowerment: legal mobilisation strategies and implications for development". odi.org. publications/8485-legal-empowerment-mobilisation. Retrieved 24 November 2014.
- Colling, Trevor (June 2009). Marginson, Paul, ed. "Court in a trap? Legal Mobilisation by Trade Unions in the United Kingdom." (PDF). Warwick Papers in Industrial Relations. Warwick, Coventry, United Kingdom: Industrial Relation s Research Unit University of Warwick Coventry. 91. Retrieved 24 November 2014.