Delivering Judicial Services in the wake of a Global Pandemic – Virtual workshop

In Legal and Judicial Reform by Amanda Anderson

Duration: 1 week
Dates: 9 to 13 November 2020
Tuition fees: £2,100 (exc. VAT)

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About the workshop
At PAI, we are committed to the goal that all our participants can continue to learn and develop during the global pandemic. We are pleased to present our new virtual workshop covering key issues in the re-establishment, maintenance and improvement of court services in the midst of, and when emerging from, the current pandemic.

The workshop includes:
• The judicial reform agenda pre-pandemic
• The implications of the current situation for judicial reform
• Approaches to clearing backlogs
• Ways of modernising the delivery of justice
• How to measure court performance and identify areas for improvement
• Advantages and risks of using video links and virtual hearings
• Utilising electronic case management
• Opportunities offered by online dispute resolution
• Arrangements to ensure access to justice for the most vulnerable and marginalised in society
• Strategies for recovery and reform
• The skills needed to lead judicial reform in a post Covid 19 world
• Approaches to creating and maintaining an ethical, effective and efficient court administration post Covid 19

Ongoing legal and judicial reforms focussing on transforming the performance of court systems have been thrown into disarray by the realities of living with lockdowns and accommodating social distancing. Backlogs which existed before the pandemic have grown exponentially. Measures aimed at improving the quality, consistency and speed of delivery in judicial decision-making processes have in many jurisdictions ground to a halt. But the key challenges remain: What is the right balance to be struck between speed and simplicity of process and the need to give full and due consideration to complex and serious matters? Between formality and accessibility? How should court administration be organised to meet current, evolving challenges and for the ‘new normal’? How should the effectiveness of a court be assessed? How can consistency in the approach to sentencing be achieved without reducing the freedom of judges to deliver justice based on the individual circumstances of each particular case?

Who is the workshop for?
This workshop is designed for policy makers, practitioners and senior decision-makers across the justice sector. These will include:
• Judges
• Registrars
• Court administrators
• Case managers
• Legal and judicial reform specialists
• Others concerned with making the justice sector work more effectively for the benefit of all citizens, to uphold the rule of law, encourage inward investment and advance speedy, fair and reliable justice.

Our workshop will be delivered using Zoho ShowTime, a web conference software which has features that let us interact with you in real time.

How participants will benefit
The workshop will enable you to:
• Enhance your understanding of judicial reform agendas internationally
• Identify ways in which these need to evolve to meet current challenges
• Analyse systems for clearing backlogs of cases
• Consider how the delivery of justice can be measured, modernised and improved
• Understand approaches to ensuring access to justice for those the judicial system has traditionally failed
• Learn some of the strategies and understand the leadership skills necessary to tackle current challenges and rebuild better systems for the future
• Consider how the justice system can be protected from corruption and other forms of unethical behaviour, especially at this time
• Develop action plans to meet current challenges and enhance systems for the future

Pre-workshop induction
We will create a practice session for participants to join Zoho ShowTime so that you understand the full functionality of the learning platform. During the induction, our Workshop Director will introduce some initial familiarisation questions that we will send to you. These questions will help our Workshop Director to understand more about each participant, for example, how long you have been in your particular role, your responsibilities, professional experience and any previous relevant training/development you have undertaken. We will also ask you whether you have any specific training needs or areas of work you would like to understand better. The questionnaire will also ask you to self-assess your current knowledge/skills and interest in certain areas of the programme.

A large component of this remote workshop will involve attending short live webinars each day over the week. At times outside the webinar sessions, participants will be expected to complete self-study or work remotely, either alone or in groups, on exercises set by the Workshop Director. All participants will have to complete each element of the programme and will need to fully commit both their time and effort throughout.

Participants will connect in online discussions, on social media, and platforms such as Zoom for any group activities. After the programme ends, there will be an opportunity for a further one-to-one coaching session with the Workshop Director to follow up on one or more topics covered during the programme.

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