Digitising cross-border judicial cooperation in the EU – 2nd EU Civil Justice Seminar
The team of the NWO Vici project ‘Affordable Access to Justice’ at Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University (Rotterdam), is organising the conference ‘Sustaining Access to Justice in Europe: New Avenues for Costs and Funding’ on 19 and 20 October 2023 at the Erasmus Paviljoen at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
Access to civil justice is of paramount importance for enforcing citizens’ rights. At the heart of access to civil justice lies litigation funding and cost management. Yet, over the past decades, access to justice has been increasingly put under pressure due to retrenching governments, high costs of procedure, and the inefficiency of courts and justice systems. Within this context, the funding of litigation in Europe seems to be shifting from public to private sources. Private actors and innovative business models emerged to provide new solutions to the old problem of financial barriers of access to justice.
With the participation of policymakers, practitioners, academics, and civil society representatives from all over Europe and beyond, the conference seeks to delve deeper into the financial implications of access to justice and the different ways to achieve sustainable civil justice systems in Europe.
The topics addressed in this international academic conference will include the different methods of financing dispute resolution, particularly in the context of group litigation (third-party funding, crowdfunding, blockchain technologies), public interest litigation, developments in ADR/ODR, the new business models of legal professionals as well as law and economics aspects on litigation funding. The conference is supported by the Dutch Research Council (NWO).
Find the link to registration here.
Please find the preliminary conference programme below.
Call for papers Vici Conference Sustainable justice 2023.pdf
Published: June 9, 2021
The second EU Civil Justice seminar took place on Friday, 21 May 2021. On Focus during this seminar were the attempts of the European Union to digitise cross-border judicial cooperation. The aim of this initiative is to reduce the hurdles for such cooperation and eliminate the need for paper. Digital technologies are mature and safe enough to exchange sensitive documents between Member States institutions. Both citizens and public institutions will benefit from the speed and low costs of these solution. Considering this perspective, the European Commission is considering different routes which the speakers of the seminar discussed. Gösta Petri from the DG Justice explained the background and some of the implications that the digitisation of EU cross-border collaboration implies. He stressed the importance of digitisation and the need to evaluate already exiting tools. The next speaker, Sandra Taal from the Ministry of Justice of the Netherlands, provided an overview of eCodex, a cross-border communication infrastructure for the exchange of documents in Europe. eCodex has proven to be a very useful and reliable tool which explains why the EU plans to invest more on it. Taal agrees with Petri about the need to integrate eCodex with any other possible solution that Commission’s consultation will produce. The third speaker, Alina Ontanu from the Erasmus University Rotterdam, provided an extensive and in-depth overview of several European attempt to digitise cross-border judicial collaboration. While these experiences have had different degrees of success, they should be considered in their entirety and better orchestrated to achieve their goal. Erlis Themeli, who served as host and moderator, used the development of the voting procedure for the Eurovision Song Contest (which was taking place in Rotterdam during that same week) to make parallels with the need for more digitisation in Europe. This was the spark that ignited the discussion about the importance of cross-border digitisation, which turned out to be both inspiring and insightful for the speakers and the audience alike.