Our History

Our History

The historical roots of the rule of law are deep and encompassing, spanning many centuries and spreading through multiple cultures. Evidence of the rule of law can be found as early as 2000 BC in the Code of Hammurabi, where the Babylonian king inscribed the laws for his people on a stone pillar for all to see. While making the laws transparent for others, the king also bound himself to the laws, meaning that he was not above the laws. Elements of the rule of law are also apparent in the works of Confucius where elements of justice and fairness are espoused. The Magna Carta signed by King John in Runnymede, England over 800 years ago, has become a powerful and influential symbol of the rule of law.

The LexisNexis® history with the rule of law is entwined with our core skills. Our talented employees and our wealth of data and technology has allowed LexisNexis to work every day to help customers increase their productivity and improve decision making. These skills also have significant value to our mission and vision to advance the rule of law around the world. Work done with clients—ranging from governments, lawyers, judges, academics, NGOs and businesses—helps LexisNexis understand the needs locally, nationally, regionally and globally. These skills provide us the tools to identify problems and develop the partnerships and solutions which can target key areas to make fundamental and lasting changes to the rule of law. In this work, LexisNexis has donated time to provide training for lawyers and judges globally. We have worked to advocate for needed changes to allow for laws to be codified and consolidated, publishing laws and case decisions in countries. Our activities are as diverse as our people and the jurisdictions they support.

In one example of this work, LexisNexis helped to shape the model anti-human trafficking laws in the United States. LexisNexis used our resources to research the existing laws, and we identified areas where existing laws could be enhanced. LexisNexis worked with the Uniform Law Commission to support the establishment of the Uniform Act on Prevention of and Remedies for Human Trafficking which has been enacted by nine states since its adoption in 2013.

From this beginning, LexisNexis has continued its mission. It has supported UN Global Compact with the inspiration behind the Business for the Rule of Law Framework adopted in July 2015, which provides guidance to the business community on how to utilize their own core skills to advance the rule of law. The LexisNexis efforts continue, as we are a founding supporter, through our parent company, RELX Group, of UNGC's Action Platform on Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions, where businesses are engaging with civil society, investors, governments and UN entities to take concrete action to advance the goals of UN Sustainable Development Goal 16 and related SDGs upon which peace, justice and strong institutions provide the basis for achievement.

LexisNexis Rule of Law Foundation is the next level of effort to enhance and magnify these projects to mission and vision. Utilizing this non-profit entity, LexisNexis will seek out and shape projects with key partners and with our unique understanding of the importance of the business role and responsibilities, along with those of other traditional rule of law actors, to create meaningful, sustainable change in local, national, regional and global projects which enhance the key elements of the rule of law.