Crystal Scales of Justice Prize
Created in 2005, the "Crystal Scales of Justice" Prize is a competition aimed at discovering and highlighting innovative and efficient practices concerning the functioning of justice, judicial procedures or the organisation of courts.
These practices are conducted in European jurisdictions (for example, initiatives devised by a court president, a registry, a Bar). They are drawn to the attention of policy-makers and the judicial community so as to improve the functioning of the public justice system.
The aim of the prize is to identify and promote innovative practices regarding the conduct of proceedings, court organisation and the functioning of court systems in general. To be eligible for consideration, the practices nominated must have been implemented recently and they should be easily usable by other States or jurisdictions. Their efficiency must be measurable.
* Holy See, Canada, Japan, Mexico, United States of America, Guatemala, Israël, Kazakhstan, Morocco and Tunisia.
The next edition of the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize will take place in 2021.
The 2019 European Crystal Scales of Justice prize, organised by the Council of Europe and rewarding innovative judicial practices in the European judicial institutions, was awarded to the Slovenian Supreme Court on 25 October 2019 in Oslo (Norway), on the occasion of the flagship event of the European Day of Justice, in presence of Mr Fredrik Bøckman Finstad, from the Ministry of Justice and Public Security of Norway, of Mr Ramin Gurbanov, President of the European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ), of Mr Christophe Poirel, Director of Human Rights, Council of Europe as well as of the members of the jury of the competition composed of eminent personalities from the judicial world.
The project ‘Improving the quality of justice’ (in Slovenian - Izboljanje kakovosti sodstva (IKS)) is a global project for the Slovenian justice with a wide range of innovative tools and methods, involving judicial staff, judges and court staff. The objectives of this project are multiple:
- increase the quality of judicial activity;
- increase the competence of judicial staff – a better satisfaction of judicial staff and judges as well as better working conditions for them;
- improve communication between judges for a better communication with court users and thus promote judicial self-governance;
- increase the trust in judiciary.
Three special mentions have been awarded to the following three projects:
- “Harmonization of processes: a response that reconciles the efficiency of the public service of Justice and wellbeing at work” [L'harmonisation des processus : une réponse conciliant l'efficience du service public de la Justice et le bienêtre au travail], 1st instance court of Luxembourg, Belgium
- “Mediation in criminal justice; referrals by prosecutors in the prosecutorial phase and referrals by judges in the presentencing phase”, National Coordinator on Mediation in Criminal Cases, Netherlands [video - powerpoint presentation]
- “Digital Justice”, Subdirectorate-General for New Technologies. Directorate General of Justice Modernization, Technological Development, Recovery and Asset Management (Ministry of Justice), Spain
Link to the video of the Prize awarding ceremony
The initiatives awarded with the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize fed the thoughts of Master 1 and Master 2 students of the Law Faculties of one of the member States of the Council of Europe or of an observer State to the CEPEJ in the framework of the Junior Crystal Scales of Justice Prize.
On 25th June 2020, the first edition of the Unior Crystal Scales of Justice Prize has been awarded to the Faculty of Law of Strasbourg (France) led by Mrs Cowderoy who defended the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize “Mediation in criminal justice; referrals by prosecutors in the prosecutorial phase and referrals by judges in the presentencing phase”, National Coordinator on Mediation in Criminal Cases, Netherlands .