Canadian Journal of Law and Technology


Richard Susskind, Online Courts and the Future of Justice


There are times when the essential nature of something is simply viewed as ‘nice to have’ until a paradigmatic shift turns the essential into a necessity, and necessity in technological change is not so much the mother of invention as the parent of behavioural change. This point is made clear by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has forced courts to put online and remote working at centre stage. There is a natural yearning to go back to ‘normal,’ but questions arise as to whether online courts are a good idea and whether attempts to work online and remotely will survive the crisis to become a ‘new normal’ (to use a term that is over-worked these days). It is thus opportune that Richard Susskind’s latest, and arguably most important, offering on law and technology should look at online courts and the future of justice. This book will be a useful guide in assessing how successfully - or not - online and remote courts have been in playing an essential role in keeping the justice system, at least in part, moving during the pandemic.