Courts on the Web in Russia

Courts on the Web in Russia

Alexei Trochev (Queen’s University, Canada)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-998-4.ch013
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Abstract

When the Internet reached Russia in the mid- 1990s, Russian judicial chiefs actively embraced the idea of having a solid presence of national judiciary on the Web. To judges, having court Web sites would improve public awarenessabout Russian courts and relieve overloaded court clerks from answering mundane questions about the location of courthouses, hours of work, schedule of hearings, court forms, and so on. However, the chronic underfinancing of Russian courts in the 1990s and the decentralized nature of the Russian judiciary made the creation and the maintenance of the lower courts’ Web sites much more sporadic. Improving public awareness about Russian courts is a priority for Russian judges, who increasingly issue impartial decisions yet atthe same time face growing public skepticism about judicial performance (Solomon, 2003, 2004; Trochev, 2006). As the growing number of studies of the information and communication technologies (ICT) in courthouses around the world show, computerized courts can both speed up the administration of justice and strengthen public trust in the judicial system (Bueno, Ribeiro, & Hoeschl, 2003; Dalal, 2005; Fabri & Contini, 2001; Fabri & Langbroek, 2000; Fabri, Jean, Langbroek, & Pauliat, 2005; Langbroek & Fabri, 2004; Oskamp, Lodder, & Apistola, 2004; Valentini, 2003; Malik, 2002). Indeed, as the recent research demonstrates, those who know something about the courts: either about court procedures or about court-ordered public policies, tend to trust the judiciary and to comply with court decisions (Baird, 2001; Gibson, Caldeira., & Baird, 1998; Kritzer & Voelker, 1998; Tyler & Mitchell, 1994; Tyler, Boeckmann, Smith, & Huo, 1997). This article focuses on the Web sites of Russian courts as the virtual gateways in the world of judicial administration (Trochev, 2002) and discusses challenges of adapting Russian court Web sites to the needs of various users of judicial system: judges themselves, law-enforcement agencies, actual litigants, general public and scholars (Toharia, 2003).
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Introduction

When the Internet reached Russia in the mid-1990s, Russian judicial chiefs actively embraced the idea of having a solid presence of national judiciary on the Web. To judges, having court Web sites would improve public awareness about Russian courts and relieve overloaded court clerks from answering mundane questions about the location of courthouses, hours of work, schedule of hearings, court forms, and so on. However, the chronic underfinancing of Russian courts in the 1990s and the decentralized nature of the Russian judiciary made the creation and the maintenance of the lower courts’ Web sites much more sporadic.

Improving public awareness about Russian courts is a priority for Russian judges, who increasingly issue impartial decisions yet at the same time face growing public skepticism about judicial performance (Solomon, 2003, 2004; Trochev, 2006). As the growing number of studies of the information and communication technologies (ICT) in courthouses around the world show, computerized courts can both speed up the administration of justice and strengthen public trust in the judicial system (Bueno, Ribeiro, & Hoeschl, 2003; Dalal, 2005; Fabri & Contini, 2001; Fabri & Langbroek, 2000; Fabri, Jean, Langbroek, & Pauliat, 2005; Langbroek & Fabri, 2004; Oskamp, Lodder, & Apistola, 2004; Valentini, 2003; Malik, 2002). Indeed, as the recent research demonstrates, those who know something about the courts: either about court procedures or about court-ordered public policies, tend to trust the judiciary and to comply with court decisions (Baird, 2001; Gibson, Caldeira., & Baird, 1998; Kritzer & Voelker, 1998; Tyler & Mitchell, 1994; Tyler, Boeckmann, Smith, & Huo, 1997).

This article focuses on the Web sites of Russian courts as the virtual gateways in the world of judicial administration (Trochev, 2002) and discusses challenges of adapting Russian court Web sites to the needs of various users of judicial system: judges themselves, law-enforcement agencies, actual litigants, general public and scholars (Toharia, 2003).

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Table of Contents
Acknowledgment
Agustí Cerrillo i Martínez, Pere Fabra i Abat
Chapter 1
Marco Fabri
The European Union (EU) is an extraordinary laboratory of innovation and change, particularly in the justice sector. The diversity of environments... Sample PDF
The Italian Style of E-Justice in a Comparative Perspective
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Chapter 2
Davide Carnevali
In spite of the technological, economic, and normative efforts, all democratic countries are developing electronic filing (e-filing) in the justice... Sample PDF
E-Justice and Policies for Risk Management
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Chapter 3
Marta Poblet, Joan-Josep Vallbé, Núria Casellas, Pompeu Casanovas
Judicial culture generally refers to the set of values, cognitive skills, and practical knowledge of members of the judiciary. In this chapter, we... Sample PDF
Judges as IT Users: The Iuriservice Example
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Chapter 4
James E. McMillan
Automated court case management systems present opportunities to develop processes and procedures that can battle corruption. This chapter provides... Sample PDF
The Potential of Computerized Court Case Management to Battle Judicial Corruption
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Chapter 5
Michael Adler, Paul Henman
This chapter considers the implications of computerisation for procedural justice in social security. It outlines an approach to the analysis of... Sample PDF
Justice Beyond the Courts: The Implications of Computerisation for Procedural Justice in Social Security
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Chapter 6
Melissa H. Conley Tyler
Every community—whether physical or virtual will inevitably experience conflict. New ways of interacting through information and communication... Sample PDF
Online Dispute Resolution
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Chapter 7
E-Justice in Spain  (pages 98-116)
Agustí Cerrillo I Martínez
Administration of justice is adding information and communication technologies in its internal operations and its relations both with judicial... Sample PDF
E-Justice in Spain
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Chapter 8
Francesco Contini, Antonio Cordella
The Italian judiciary is characterised by a weak system of governance, consequence of institutional and cultural factors. In this framework, the... Sample PDF
Italian Justice System and ICT: Matches and Mismatches Between Technology and Organisation1
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Chapter 9
Roberto Fragale Filho, Alexandre Veronese
It has become commonplace to talk about a silent revolution in the Brazilian Judiciary for which the widespread use of ICT has been of great impact.... Sample PDF
Electronic Justice in Brazil
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Chapter 10
J. William Holland
This chapter outlines the history of digital government in criminal justice, starting with the Johnson Administration’s findings concerning... Sample PDF
Digital Government and Criminal Justice
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Chapter 11
Sandra Potter, Phil Farrelly, Derek Begg
This chapter tracks the response of Australian courts to rapid advances in ICT. It shows how, despite early resistance and a reactive approach to... Sample PDF
The E-Court Roadmap: Innovation and Integration An Australian Case Study
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Chapter 12
Yves Poullet
This chapter examines the ambitious Phenix project, a global project for the whole computerization of all Courts and Tribunals in Belgium, with the... Sample PDF
The Belgian Case: Phenix or How to Design E Justice Through Privacy Requirements and in Full Respect of the Separation of Powers
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Chapter 13
Alexei Trochev
When the Internet reached Russia in the mid- 1990s, Russian judicial chiefs actively embraced the idea of having a solid presence of national... Sample PDF
Courts on the Web in Russia
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Chapter 14
Anne Wallace
A 1999 Australian report on the prospective impact of information and communications technology on the justice system presented a vision of how... Sample PDF
E-Justice: An Australian Perspective
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About the Contributors