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International Symposium ‘The role of courts and access to justice in the digital era’

Radboud University will host a two-day International Symposium on 9-10 June entitled ‘The role of courts in the digital era and access to justice.’

Programme

The event will take place on Thursday 9 and Friday 10 June 2022. View the full programme here.

Key note speakers

During the event there will be several presentations by top of the bill key note speakers. View information on the speakers via the link below.

Practical information

View information on travelling to Nijmegen, the conference location and accommodation options.

Registration

Would you like to attend the conference? Please register via the button below.

Publication

There is no requirement to submit a paper before the conference. However, delegates are encouraged to submit articles for publication afterwards (i.e. after the conference has taken place) based on their conference presentations. The deadline for submission will be made known later.

The European Union and national governments stress the need for and benefits of digitalisation of justice. Digitalisation is meant to ‘modernise’ the conduct of judicial procedures. However, there is little reflection on what such ‘modernisation’ entails – beyond saving time and costs - and why a ‘modernised’ procedure is preferable to a ‘traditional’ procedure. In addition, the overall impact of digitalisation of justice on access to justice remains unaddressed: what kind of (access to) justice are governments building? In turn, this requires to examine whether digitalisation of justice changes or indeed transforms - as the concept of ‘digital transformation’ claims - the nature of the justice system, and whether these changes are always positive or desirable. Some even argue that beyond ‘modernization’ or ‘transformation’, the current reforms amount to a ‘digital revolution’.

Digitalisation is often viewed as a key condition to ensuring effective justice in the modern era, enhancing ‘resilience’ of justice systems. It presumably helps tackle delays, enhance legal certainty, and make justice cheaper and more accessible for all. At the same time, challenges associated with digitalisation are highlighted, such as ensuring access for disadvantaged groups to digital technologies, the impact of digital technologies on fundamental rights and procedural justice, and ensuring security and privacy of digital solutions. The emergence of new technology brings with it the need for ongoing assessment of its impact.

This symposium will provide a forum for researchers and practitioners to critically assess the process of digitalisation of justice systems and the evolving role of courts in the digital era in Europe and beyond.

The symposium is a collaboration of three groups of researchers based at Radboud University: the Institutions for Conflict Resolution group, the Digital Legal Studies group and the Interdisciplinary Hub on Privacy, Security and Data Governance (iHub).

Symposium format

The symposium gives both emerging and established scholars an opportunity to network with colleagues and present their work to an expert audience.

We aim at a mix of international speakers. The conference also seeks to further synergies among academia, policymakers, and the judiciary. The language of the conference is English. Keynote speakers will present general trends and ideas on the themes of the conference. Papers will be divided in panel sessions, followed by discussions and comments. In addition to paper presentations, we aim to hold a round table with practitioners, interactive workshops and Soapbox pitch sessions.

The preferred format of the conference is presential, although remote participation will also be accommodated. The final decision on the format will be taken closer to the time of the conference depending on the epidemiological situation and the measures in force.

Organising Committee

View the organising committee of the symposium ‘The role of courts and access to justice in the digital era’.