The aim of the CEPEJ is to contribute to improving the quality of justice and the efficiency of its functioning in the 47 Member States of the Council of Europe.
Stéphane Leyenberger, Secretary of the CEPEJ
File: Measuring the quality of justice: ascertainment of users’ expectations
File: Court users satisfaction surveys; first experiences in France, Italy and in the Netherlands
France: Angoulème Tribunal
Implementation of the CEPEJ questionnaire on the quality of justice at the Angoulème Tribunal de Grande Instance in June 2010
A national court user satisfaction
survey held in the Dutch courts
The survey was held in all the (19) district courts and (5) courts of appeal simultaneously.
Secretary of the survey project group
Member of the CEPEJ-GT-QUAL
Italy: The experience of Turin and Catania
Users’ customer satisfaction analysis: the Italian experience (January-March) 2011
Taking the opportunity offered by the CEPEJ, in September 2010 the Statistics department within the Italian Ministry of Justice invited the Tribunal of Turin and the Court of Appeal of Catania (pilot courts within the network of CEPEJ) to conduct a Customer Satisfaction Survey among the users of justice. Also the Court of Appeal of Turin and the Tribunal of Catania immediately joint the initiative.
The working group decided that the objectives of the survey
• To evaluate the overall satisfaction level of Justice amongst
the final users
Since the Satisfaction Surveys had no budget, we decided to
maximize the use of internal resources and free external
resources. The experience of the statisticians within the
ministry’s department guaranteed the quality of the whole
project. Thanks to a cooperation between the Courts and the
University, a group of around 25 students in each city have been
selected to conduct the on-field interviews. Prior to the
fieldwork, a number of motivational sessions were carried out.
Moreover, in order to ensure good quality standards,
interviewers were carefully briefed on the approach to the
interview, on the behaviour and good conduct, and, obviously, on
the questionnaire content.
Based on the population of users visiting the courts under
investigation, we have calculated that a sample of 600
interviews in each city were necessary to get a reliable result,
within an acceptable standard error (lower than 4%).
The target of people to be interviewed was defined as parties,
witnesses, interpreters, experts, relatives of the parties, of
witnesses, etc. People working for justice like judges and
lawyers were excluded from the target.
Before the interviews started, many posters promoting the
initiative were stuck to the walls of the Courts premises. This
simple action had a great impact on the respondents’ willingness
to take part into the survey.
The questionnaire included 20 questions. A full report of
results from Catania and Turin is available for consultation.
With regards to the key questions about the overall judgement
given by the users to the service received in the two cities, we
have that in Turin the 50% of users gave a “satisfied” and “very
satisfied” mark, and only 32% of interviewed gave a negative
feedback. In Catania, as expected, the result was slightly
different as the positive feedback was given by 25% of
respondents and negative feedback by 54%.
Very similar the responses were given by citizens to the key
important factors of justice, that were ranked as follows:
1. Competence of judges
Ongoing activities: what's new?
Evaluation of judicial systems
The working group on evaluation of judicial systems (CEPEJ-GT-EVAL) is implementing the new evaluation process of judicial systems, which should lead to the publication of a new report in September 2012. The national correspondents have until 31 December 2011 to complete the Scheme.
Work is also underway, in co-operation with the CEPEJ-GT-QUAL and with the Steering group of the SATURN Centre, to define judicial quality indicators.
Timeframes of proceedings
The Sterring group of the SATURN Centre for judicial time management (CEPEJ-SATURN), in co-operation with the Network of Pilot courts, pursues the setting up of a European Observatory of judicial timeframes, with a qualitative and quantitative double-approach. A training programme for the courts has been set up for the courts wishing to be supported in the implementation of the measures developed by the CEPEJ to improve judicial time management; experts from the CEPEJ are at the disposal of the voluntary courts to work with them in this direction, on the basis of a handbook of methodology set up by the SATURN Centre. The interested courts are invited to contact the CEPEJ Secretariat: Stephane.Leyenberger@coe.int.
Furthermore, the SATURN Centre expects to refine the number of civil, criminal and administrative cases which could be subject to a regular follow-up in order to measure and understand timeframes of proceedings for these cases, considered in an homogeneous manner in the different member States.
Quality of Justice
The working group on quality of justice (CEPEJ-GT-QUAL) proposes to voluntary courts a training programme for the organisation of court users satisfaction surveys, on the basis of a methodological handbook adopted last year. CEPEJ experts may accompany voluntary courts for this purpose. The interested courts are invited to contact the CEPEJ Secretariat: Stephane.Leyenberger@coe.int.
Work is also underway, in co-operation with the CEPEJ-GT-EVAL and the Groupe de pilotage of the SATURN Centre, to define justice quality indicators.
Furthermore, the working group is preparing guidelines on the main principles which should preside the reorganisation of judicial maps.
Network of Pilot courts
The plenary meeting of the Network of pilot courts took place in Strasbourg, on 22 September 2011. The Group provided its expertise in the field of the CEPEJ's work already underway for the organisation of satisfaction surveys in courts, the definition of common case categories which might be subject to a specific study in the field of length of procedure and identification of quality indicators of the functioning of the courts.
European Day of Justice
The main event of the 9th edition of the European Day of Justice took place in the Tribunal de Grande Instance of Toulouse (France) in presence of representatives of the Council of Europe and of the European Commission. About fifteen countries participated to the celebration of the day through the organisation of events aimed at improving the knowledge of citizens of the functioning of their judicial systems. The events which do not figure on the CEPEJ Website may be transmitted to Annette.Sattel@coe.int. Furthermore, the member States willing to introduce their application for the celebration of the main event in 2012, should send their draft application to this address before 31 January 2012.
Crystal Scales of Justice
2010 CEPEJ activity report
The CEPEJ Vice-President, Georg Stawa, presented the 2010 CEPEJ activity
report to the Committee of Ministers. He has underlined working
prospects for the coming months. The Committee of Ministers widely
congratulated the CEPEJ for its works which are oriented towards
concrete results in the fields of independence and efficiency of
Study on the situation of the contractualisation and judicial process in Europe - CEPEJ Studies No. 16 / Julien Lhuillier, Institute of Criminology and Criminal Law, University of Lausanne, Scientific expert of the European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice
Study on Council of Europe Member States on Appeal and
Supreme Courts' Lengths of Proceedings - CEPEJ Studies
No. 17 / Report prepared by Marco Velicogna IRSIG-CNR,
Expert of the European Commission for the Efficiency of
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|- 18th CEPEJ plenary meeting, Strasbourg||07-08 December 2011|