The Institute for Policy and Legal Studies (IPLS) is an Albanian non-profit, non- governmental organization, registered as a Foundation in May 1999, and located in Tirana, Albania. The idea of the founders to establish an institute with a view to pool high quality resources and work for the purpose of writing laws and recommending policy standards started in 1997, after the turmoil caused by the pyramid schemes, and was already maturing in 1998. At the time, the founders, most of them working for the Ministry of legislative Reform and thereby having the opportunity to clearly see the deficiencies of the system, came to believe that strong professional resources could be more easily pooled and managed and ideas more objectively developed outside of the government in the areas of legal writing and policy analysis. That idea was embraced by the East West Management Institute (EWMI), an American NGO based in New York, which then assisted in the foundation of IPLS.As decided by its founders the IPLS has to pursue a mission with two main emphases:
Primary Research & Policy Interests
Creating and maintaining a database for the distribution of IPLS information to domestic and international organizations and institutions.
The Board and Staff
Since 1998, the founders were responsible for the drafting of the current Albanian constitution and authored more than twenty (20) post-Constitutional reform laws. All of the drafted laws have already have been passed into law by Parliament.
B-A Board of Directors manages IPLS. The Board of Directors is comprised of five (5) members with reputation, knowledge and working experience in Albania, in legal and other fields.
The Board is responsible for determining the overall strategies, programs and budget of IPLS as well as make the evaluation of its activities on an annual basis. It also assumes the appointment of the Executive Director for IPLS. The Executive Director of IPLS is responsible for the daily management of the Institute including the oversight of the staff, the proper implementation of the projects and of the Board’s decisions. The Executive Director may not serve on the Board.
IPLS intends to create an Advisory Board comprised of nine people from Albania, in such areas of expertise such as law, policy, media, business, financing, statistics, public administration, media, and education. The purpose of the Advisory Board is to keep IPLS abreast to new and developing legal and policy issues, propose projects, and provide feed back on the work of IPLS.
C- Full-time staff composition
The structure of IPLS for the time being is light and flexible. The staffing is, of course, far from the initial planning because of insufficient funds. Currently, four full time staff are hired and operational. The positions currently held are as follows: Executive Director, Policy Program Director, Legal Program Director, Financier/ Secretary. IPLS is planning to recruit appropriate candidates as the volume of work increases.
D-Associated staff, part-time staff and consultants
Besides its full-time staff, IPLS has striven to identify and attract professionals on an ad hoc basis. Such policy has the advantage of keeping the administrative expenses at a minimum while, at the same time, allowing for a free hand on allocating the right person to the right project. Among its closest team of collaborators IPLS counts at least ten of them, mostly young professionals who have made valuable contribution in the areas of constitutional, administrative and commercial law, public procurement policies, economic development, NGO management etc. They mainly come from public administration offices, university and civil society organisations in Albania.