Towards Open Judiciary: «Achieving Open Justice through Citizen Participation and Transparency»

9781522507178Open government initiatives have become a defining goal for public administrators around the world. However, progress is still necessary outside of the executive and legislative sectors. There is a need to know what openness in justice is, to explore its implementation, and to understand what it can do to improve government, society and democracy.

Despite previous developments regarding openness in the judiciary, the lack of specific literature on this topic (open government principles applied within the judiciary), combining vision and voice and therefore adopting the philosophy of open government, shows that this is still an unexplored field. What’s more, although numerous initiatives aimed at openness have been undertaken, generally speaking, judicial institutions have followed different directions and interpretations when it has come to implement them. As a result, nowadays, it can be said that the development of open judiciary is unequal and heterogeneous. There is confusion about the concept itself (open judiciary versus open justice), about its implementation process, and about its real impact.

In this context It has been published the book Achieving Open Justice through Citizen Participation and Transparency

(IGI Global) that I have edited jointly with Dr. Mila Gascó-Hernández (Center for Technology in Government and Rockefeller College of Public Affaires & Policy at SUNY Albany, USA). The aim of this book is to shed light on the concept of openness in the judiciary and to identify and analyze worldwide initiatives that focus on opening the judicial organizations by making them more transparent and collaborative/participative. The ultimate goal is to show that an open government is not enough. There is a need to talk about an open state and, therefore, to make sure, openness is guaranteed in the three state’s branches. No other publication has approached open government from the state perspective emphasizing the need to also have an open justice/open judiciary. Now this book does it.

Chapters and topics covered

The book includes the next chapters and topics:

  1. Preface
  2. Open Judiciary Worldwide: Best Practices and Lessons Learnt
  3. Open and Transparent Judicial Records in the Digital Age: Applying Principles and Performance Measures
  4. Open Judiciary in High Courts: Securing a Networked Constitution, Challenges of E-Justice, Transparency, and Citizen Participation
  5. Open Judiciary in a Closed Society: A Paradox in China?
  6. An Analysis of a Lay Adjudication System and Open Judiciary: The New Japanese Lay Adjudication System
  7. From eJustice to Open Judiciary: An Analysis of the Portuguese Experience
  8. Integrating Semi-Open Data in a Criminal Judicial Setting
  9. Digitalizing Police Requirements: Opening up Justice through Collaborative Initiatives
  10. Open Justice in Europe through Open Access to Legal Information
  11. Consumer “Access to Justice” in EU in Low-Value Cross-Border Disputes and the Role of Online Dispute Resolution
  12. Open Data for Open Justice in Seven Latin American Countries
  13. Open Justice in Latin America? An Assessment Framework for Judiciary Portals in 2015


In addition to Mila Gascó-Hernández and myself as authors, also collaborate in chapters of this book:  Nial Raaen (National Center for State Courts, USA), Jesus Cano and Luis Pomed (Constitutional Court, Spain), Roberto Hernández (UNED University, Spain), Mei Gechlik (Stanford Law School, USA), Di Dai (Peking University Law School, China), Jordan Corrente Beck (Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, USA), Yumiko Kita (University of Sussex, UK), Rui Pedro Lourenço, Paula Fernando and Conceição Gomes (University of Coimbra, Portugal), Mortaza S. Bargh and Ronald F. Meijer (Ministry of Security and Justice, The Netherlands), Sunil Choenni (Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands), Thomas J. Lampoltshammer (Danube University Krems, Austria), Andres Guadamuz (University of Sussex, UK), Clemens Wass (BY WASS GmbH, Austria), Thomas Heistracher (Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, Austria), Inmaculada Barral-Viñals (University of Barcelona, Spain), Sandra Elena (Ministry of Justice, Argentina), François van Schalkwyk (University of Stellenbosch, South Africa) and Rodrigo Sandoval-Almazán (Universidad Autonoma del Estado de México, Mexico).

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