Priorities & Strategic plan

Chief Justice Warren E. Burger

“A system of justice cannot be genuinely fair and responsive to public need if it is not efficient.”

- Chief Justice
Warren E. Burger


You can read the full 2017-2019 campaign report here. (pdf)

At its November 2016 meeting, NCSC’s Board of Directors adopted a three-year Access and Fairness Campaign Plan to guide the work of the organization between 2017-2019.  This plan is designed to align the efforts of NCSC with the greater court community on the key challenges facing state courts in America: stemming the erosion of public trust and confidence in our judicial institutions. The Access and Fairness Campaign contains five initiatives to improve public confidence in the courts: 

  • Reduce the costs, time and complexity of traditional dispute resolution processes
  • Improve the trust of minority and economically disadvantaged communities
  • Grow online solutions to expand access to courts
  • Demonstrate a commitment to fair, impartial and accountable courts
  • Provide judicial leaders with additional governance skills

These five initiatives are the product of intensive discussions with advisory committees and court association leaders, a review of the major trends and issues identified by other court organizations, and key findings from NCSC public opinion polls. The initiatives provide an ability to organize and galvanize the collective efforts of the court community around institutional outcomes that will result in tangible improvements to the public perception of fairness and access to state courts.

Other priorities of the organization include:

  • Criminal sentencing
  • Courthouse security
  • Court users with Limited English Proficiency (LEP)
  • Elders and courts
  • Judicial independence
  • Judicial performance evaluations
  • Jury studies
  • Problem-solving courts
  • Self-represented litigants

In addition, the Center will continue to advance the International Framework for Court Excellence (IFCE) and publish both State Court Organization (SCO) and the Court Statistics Project (CSP).  The Institute for Court Management (ICM) offers its prestigious Fellows Program as best-in-breed continuing education for court professionals. 

Over a dozen professional court associations will continue to count on NCSC as the providers of association management services, and the Center will continue to offer both e-Courts and the Court Technology Conference (CTC), which provide education and networking opportunities for court professionals across the country and the world.

The National Center for State Court's current mission, improving judicial administration through leadership and service to the state courts, springs logically from its original purpose as an information clearinghouse so that innovations in one court can benefit all courts. Read more about our mission and history.