@TheCenter from NCSC


Trends in court leadership, technology, and more

Leadership and technology are the central themes of Trends in State Courts 2015, an annual NCSC publication dedicated to making courts aware of key trends that affect not only court operations, but also society. Articles examine numerous aspects of court leadership, such as judges and court administrators as “productive pairs,” collaboration between stakeholders inside and outside of courts, and engagement of court staff. A special section looks at topics highlighted in state of the judiciary messages and how interest in those issues has risen or fallen between 2010 and 2015. Court technology topics include developing an online benchbook, using online portals to help self-represented litigants, and archiving records via the cloud. Other articles examine how Minnesota’s Fourth Judicial District became a “high-functioning court,” accessibility and fairness in Nevada, and more. A limited number of print copies of Trends in State Courts 2015 are available by emailing cwright@ncsc.org.



Just published: Juvenile Justice and Alternative Sentencing in Central America

NCSC launched a bilingual juvenile justice program website as part of its regional program in Central America. The website serves as a platform to highlight program activities in El Salvador, Panama, Guatemala and Costa Rica. This website has a section for a Juvenile Justice Observatory, an online platform for NCSC’s local partners to promote and share information, as well as highlight policies, practices, systems and exchange of experiences in place in the region. NCSC is sharing its activities and inviting other institutions working with juvenile justice in the region to collaborate on comparative analysis of best practices and debate about juvenile justice in Central America.


How to develop a court records disposition and preservation plan

NCSC’s Joint Technology Committee is hosting a webinar, “Developing an Electronic Court Records Disposition and Preservation Plan,” Wednesday, June 24 from 1-2 pm EST. The interactive webinar will address strategies for long-range policy development, as well as technical considerations for effective disposition and preservation of electronic court records. Referencing the recent Joint Technology Committee white paper, session presenters will discuss guiding principles and best practices for development of a comprehensive electronic court records management plan. Sign up for the webinar here.


Do you know anyone who has made innovations in jury operations?

The Center for Jury Studies is seeking nominations for the G. Thomas Munsterman Award, which recognizes states, local courts, individuals, or other organizations that have made significant improvements or innovations in jury procedures, operations, or practices in one of the following categories: state or local statutes, rules, or other formal changes; jury management; and in-court improvements. Nominations for the Munsterman Award are currently being accepted through August 15, 2015, and can be sent by email to Greg Hurley.


Reporters briefed on state courts at California Law School

On May 29 NCSC participated in the 10th annual Journalist Law School at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.  The program included a panel on Transparency, Accountability and Governance in the State Court Systems. Richard Schauffler, NCSC’s director of research, joined California Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye (pictured left) for a discussion moderated by Donna Melby (center), co-chair of NCSC’s Lawyers Committee, and John Nockleby (right), law professor at Loyola Law School. Nearly 40 journalists engaged the panel in a lively discussion of issues ranging from live streaming policies to availability of caseload statistics. On each topic raised by the journalists, the Chief Justice provided the perspective as seen from the California courts while Schauffler provided the national context and explained the variation across state courts. This marks the fifth year that NCSC has collaborated with Loyola Law School on the program, which serves as a deep dive into law and courts for members of the media.   

NCSC reading room


Girls in Justice provides a humanizing look at girls in the juvenile justice system and the unique issues they face. Richard Ross’ evocative photographs are accompanied by first-person stories, as told to him in interviews at over 250 detention facilities across the United States. Girls in Justice also features essays from some of the top girls’ criminology scholars and advocates in the U.S. to give readers a picture of their work with young women in the system. Girls in Justice is available for checkout through the NCSC Library

Judges and court employees need more, and better, education at reduced cost. This month’s Trends in State Courts article shows how judicial educators have responded by building less-expensive, Web-based learning into their comprehensive education programs.
Donate to NCSC
LinkedIn Twitter Facebook Vimeo Flickr