Community Action Boards

The Community Action Boards (Span. JAC) in Colombia originated in the 1950s in a small village where the community decided to organize for the purposes of building a communal school. This idea was later institutionalized by Law 19 of 1958, after which about 70 rules were generated with respect to various laws, decrees, resolutions and regulations. This normative process culminated with Law 743 of 2002 and Regulatory Decree 2350 of 2003. In this last Law the communal organization was shaped by the Communal Action Boards as civic, social and community organizations of local management, non-profit , of a solidary nature, with legal capacity and private property rights, voluntarily integrated by the residents of a place that combine efforts and resources to pursue integral and sustainable development. The goal is for its members to plan the development of their community through the generation of autonomous community processes for the identification, formulation, execution, administration and evaluation of community development plans, programs and projects. JACs can be constituted at all local levels, including residential complexes, neighborhoods, urban divisions, hamlets, sidewalks and cities, from a minimum number of affiliates residing in the corresponding territory. The community organization in the country has about 50 000 JACs with legal status and 4 million affiliates, in addition to indirect influence in their areas of activity. Initially, seventy percent of the JACs were rural and thirty percent urban. The territorial coverage of the JAC has a presence in all the departmental entities of the country, paths in the rural sector and neighborhoods in the urban sectors.

Institutional design


Formalization: is the innovation embedded in the constitution or legislation, in an administrative act, or not formalized at all?

Frequency: how often does the innovation take place: only once, sporadically, or is it permanent or regular?

Mode of Selection of Participants: is the innovation open to all participants, access is restricted to some kind of condition, or both methods apply?

Type of participants: those who participate are individual citizens, civil society organizations, private stakeholders or a combination of those?

Decisiveness: does the innovation takes binding, non-binding or no decision at all?

Co-governance: is there involvement of the government in the process or not?

embedded in the constitution/legislation 
Mode of selection of participants
Type of participants
democratic innovation yields a binding decision  


  • Deliberation
  • Direct Voting
  • E-Participation
  • Citizen Representation


  • Accountability
  • Responsiveness
  • Rule of Law
  • Political Inclusion
  • Social Equality

Policy cycle

Agenda setting
Formulation and decision-making
Policy Evaluation


How to quote

Do you want to use the data from this website? Here’s how to cite:

Pogrebinschi, Thamy. (2017). LATINNO Dataset. Berlin: WZB.

Would you like to contribute to our database?

Send us a case