Judicial Innovation in Turbulent Times: Towards a Redefinition of Power, Quality and Access to Justice?

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 08:30-10:20
RC12 Sociology of Law (host committee)

Language: English

The word “innovation” is one of the most widely used labels of recent times. People are always “conducive to innovation” – the common use of this concept conveys, in fact, something right, positive and charming. Even in the legal field, professionals eagerly declare themselves ready to innovate and to eradicate inefficiencies. Especially in these turbulent times, judicial innovation is become a sort of mantra, used very often to justify budget cuts by policymakers and legislators. In this sense, the focus of the debate is shifting from the people’s rights to effectiveness and efficiency of the judicial service.

In the light of this scenario – which is developing in different times and forms from country to country – how is it possible to conceive judicial innovation? Which conceptions of judicial innovation have made their appearance in different parts of the world? What is its impact on judicial power and independence? How is it changing the quality of justice? And what are its effects on access to justice, especially for the most marginalized and excluded sectors of society?

This session aims to reflect on the multiple consequences of judicial innovation, in the broad sense, not just technological innovation, but also legal, organizational and cultural innovation. The working hypothesis of this panel is that judicial innovation is gradually redefining the ways to conceive power, quality and access to justice. The panel session invites contributions both from north and south of the world, to start a new debate about the role of judicial innovation.

Session Organizer:
Luca VERZELLONI, Centro de Estudos Sociais, Portugal
Luca VERZELLONI, Centro de Estudos Sociais, Portugal and Vivian PAES, Fluminense Federal University, Brazil
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