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.
The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe expects the
CEPEJ to continue to innovate, to think about issues of judicial
systems in a pragmatic way, rooted in the realities of the
functioning of courts on a daily basis, to produce practical
tools serving justice professionals. It is in this spirit that
the CEPEJ has adopted its new medium term activity programme:
continuing the regular process for evaluating the functioning of
justice in the member states, establishing a genuine European
Observatory of judicial timeframes, promoting quality of justice
– in particular by attempting to assess European court users'
Measuring performance of judicial systems and Courts
General introduction: justice as a public service
What is a public
service ? What has justice in common with any other public
service, what are its specificities ? The expectations of the
court users haved changed, they ask the courts to be performant and
to take decisions in a reasonable time. Cultural differences
about management and measurement have to be respected.
Prosecutor, Court of Appeal of Paris
Associated Professor at the Law faculty of Poitiers, France
Chairman of the CEPEJ-GT-EVAL
Note : The documents conserved their original oral form as presented during the 14th CEPEJ plenary meeting on 9 and 10 December 2009 in Strasbourg.
How to measure court performance while safeguarding the fundamental principles of justice ?
The principle of independence : what are its relations to the measurement of court performance ? What have responsibility and responsible management to do with it ? Why it is important that judges participate in the Organisation, the diffusion and the use of the results ?
Today's debate cannot consist in examining the legitimacy of systems for measuring the performance of judges with regard to all the principles of fundamental justice. Argue that judges must work effectively while respecting the principles as those contained in Article 6 of the European Convention of Human Rights seems to increase the flatness. In criminal cases, for example, one can hardly see how the judge might be satisfied with a lesser degree of personal conviction to enhance his own performance, the search for truth requires an investment of time, whose relevance cannot meet with only quantitative criteria. How can one argue that the office of judge is detached from all the constraints on public activities, as close as they are the heart of the notion of state (More).
Judge at the Court of justice of the Geneva canton, Switzerland
Chairman of the CEPEJ-GT-QUAL
Is there a relationship between court size and court performance ?
Discussing the optimum court system always raises the question if there is a relationship between court size and court performance: Are smaller courts inefficient or delivering the court-services close to the people’s needs ? Are bigger courts serving as highly specialized units or working like inflexible dinosaurs ? Austrian findings on length of procedures trimming the court system combined with the use of CEPEJ’s benchmarks might give some answers… (More)
Public Prosecutor, Directorate for Central Administration and Coordination,
Federal Ministry of Justice, Austria,
Member of the CEPEJ-GT-EVAL
Is it possible to measure court performance? The lessons from the evaluation system in the Netherlands
The Modernization law of 2002 is a success : the courts are more productive and the users are more satisfied. But, why the judges do they complain ? The speaker delivers interesting insights to the experiences made with the modernization law in the Netherlands. (More)
Frans van der DOELEN
Programme Manager, Department of the Justice System
Ministry of Justice, The Netherlands
Member of the CEPEJ-GT-EVAL
New management policies in the courts of the Russian Federation
President of the Odintsovo City Court of the Moscow Region
Towards CEPEJ's indicators of court performance? Presentation of preliminary works
Public Prosecutor, Directorate for Central Administration and Coordination
Federal Ministry of Justice, Austria
Member of the CEPEJ-GT-EVAL
Ongoing activities: what's new?
Evaluation of judicial systems
The experts from CEPEJ-GT-EVAL work on the preparation of the 2010 Edition of the Report evaluating European judicial systems, from the processing of 2008 data provided by the States, realised by the scientific expert, Natalia Delgrande. The national correspondents responsible for data collection will meet in Strasbourg with the experts on 5 May 2010 to asses the progress of work. The report should be discussed by the CEPEJ at its 15th plenary meeting (30 June-1 July) and published at the end of September 2010.
Timeframes of proceedings
The SATURN Centre for judicial time management continues to develop tools to establish a permanent European Observatory of judicial timeframes, based on the CEPEJ Network of Pilot courts. From the results of tests being made in pilot courts, the SATURN Centre refines methods for calculating and collecting statistical data regarding the length of procedures and court case flow management. These methods will be gradually extended to a representative sample of courts in each member state.
Quality of Justice
Three important documents will be
finalised at the 7th meeting of the
CEPEJ-GT-QUAL in Strasbourg on 29 and 30 March:
Execution of court decisions
The guidelines for a better implementation of the existing Council of Europe’s Recommendation on enforcement, adopted by the European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ) in December 2009, were officially presented on 18 January in the UK by Mr John Stacey, Vice President of the CEPEJ and Head of International Development for Court Administration at Her Majesty’s Court Service and Mr John Marston, Chairman of the CEPEJ working group on Enforcement and Former Chairman of the High Court Enforcement Officiers's Association in England and Wales. The presentation took place at the Ministry of Justice in London and it will be featured in a major publication, Credit Today (complete news).
Network of Pilot Courts
The Network will meet in Geneva on 13 April 2010, invited in the framework of the Swiss Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe. It will assess, with CEPEJ members and experts, the collection of statistical data on judicial time management and the implementation of satisfaction surveys of court users (see above).
European Day for Civil Justice (EDCJ) and the "Cristal Scales of Justice"
The CEPEJ Secretariat went to the European Commission on 26 January 2010 to co-ordinate, with the services of DG-JLS, the preparation of the next European Day of Justice (October 25) and the prize: "Crystal Scales of Justice" .
The Crystal Scales of Justice will be awarded, after deliberation of a Jury composed of 10 eminent European legal professionals, to the best innovative practices contributing to improve the quality of the functioning of the justice system. This year, for the first time, files to be submitted by applicants will concern both the criminal and civil fields.
Call for applications has been launched by the Council of Europe and the European Commission on 11 March 2010. Applications must be submitted by 30 June 2010.
Concerning the European Day of Justice, information concerning events which will be held at the initiative of courts in the Council of Europe member states will be published on the CEPEJ website as from September 2010. Information from member States concerning the events may already be transmitted to the CEPEJ Secretariat (firstname.lastname@example.org).
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