Experts to consider how courts will thrive in a post-pandemic world



Experts to consider how courts will thrive in a post-pandemic world

The coronavirus pandemic has proven itself to be the ultimate disrupter in every facet of society, including how the courts operate and dispense justice.

During the past four months, the term new normal has been used to describe everything from remote hearings to courtroom cleaning procedures, all without the understanding of exactly what new normal means and what it will look like in the future.

To reach that point, the Just Horizons Council will address a series of questions in five phases during the next 18 months:

  • Preserving the Future: What core values do we want to preserve?
  • Exploring Macro Trends: What trends might affect courts in the next 10 to 15 years?
  • Broadening Input: What do court stakeholders consider the most important and uncertain drivers of change for courts?
  • Creating Scenarios: What are possible futures for courts and how might each affect core justice system values?
  • Charting the Future: What actions do we take to prepare for and shape the role of courts in delivering justice in the future?

“We’re excited to launch this initiative in conjunction with NCSC’s 50th anniversary in 2021,” said NCSC President Mary McQueen. “While reflecting on the extraordinary accomplishments of our courts over the decades, we also will look forward to and imagine possible new roles, policies, and processes to guide the judicial system of the future.”

A variety of methods, such as interviews and surveys, will be used to inform the Just Horizons Council. The council will meet, at least for the next year, by videoconference once or twice a month, as needed.

To march or not to march?

That's the question NCSC's Center for Judicial Ethics' staff covers in its inaugural CourtClass tutorial. Judges and court staff should consider watching this video before participating in marches and/or demonstrations.