A session co-organized with Thomson Reuters
An effective legal system is not just good for those who deal with courts, but for everyone. Digital justice systems improve access to justice, which has a direct impact on racial equity, and by strengthening the rule of law, support countries to achieve SDG 16 goals.
Take for example South Africa and Kenya. Thomson Reuters supported trials of a digital justice system with the Kenyan Court of Appeals, and in South Africa is delivering digital justice across the civil justice sector.
Their systems allow the creation and presentation of a fully digital hearing file including multi-media evidence, collaboration tools for enhanced pre-trial preparation. and ease to use presentation tools for hybrid and virtual hearings. Judges are increasingly at the forefront of these modernization efforts, and their actions are driving digital access to court proceedings and making court processes more negotiable and understandable.
In Canada, First Nations members are using digital justice to pursue aboriginal land rights claims against the government. Digital justice systems are empowering more people, especially disadvantaged populations—in improving racial equity and access to justice.
From body-worn cameras to digital courtroom systems, digitization has the potential to improve transparency, accountability and auditability. In this session, guest speakers will consider the merits of different initiatives and the barriers to adopting these in different societies.
Not everyone has reliable internet access or devices which are critical to be fully participatory in these new court systems. Equally, many countries are held back by budgets, social factors and immature IT systems. The panel will consider the barriers and what if anything international organizations can do to support change.