The civil justice system supports social order and economic activity, but a number of factors over the last decade have created a situation in which the value of civil justice is being undermined and the civil courts are in a state of dilapidation. For the 2008 Hamlyn Lectures, Dame Hazel Genn discusses reforms to civil justice in England and around the world over the last decade in the context of escalating expenditure on criminal justice and vanishing civil trials. In critically assessing the claims and practice of mediation for civil disputes, she questions whether diverting cases out of the public courts and into private dispute resolution promotes access to justice, looks critically at the changed expectations of the judiciary in civil justice and points to the need for a better understanding of how judges 'do justice'.
• Sets out a bold vision of the social importance of civil justice and challenges some of the modern anti-adjudication/pro-mediation discourse of the late twentieth century • Provides a fresh perspective on the administration of civil justice and civil procedure by evaluating policy and changes to procedures within the context of the social purpose of the civil justice system • Addresses topical policy issues on civil justice such as access to justice, legal costs, ADR and the judiciary, thereby stimulating and contributing to debate on matters of public importance • Brings together the relationship between civil and criminal justice, thus offering broader insights into trends in justice policy and helping the reader to think outside of the traditional divisions between civil and criminal justice
1. Introduction: what is civil justice for?; 2. Civil justice: how much is enough?; 3. ADR and civil justice: what's justice got to do with it?; 4. Judges and civil justice; 5. Conclusion.
'Hazel Genn does not pull her punches. [The lectures] should be required reading especially for policy makers in government and for the senior judiciary.' Michael Zander QC, New Law Journal