Judicial Education as a Forum for Identifying and Meeting Research Needs
(2015) 3 International Organization for Judicial Training 95
15 Pages Posted: 6 Jun 2015
Date Written: April 30, 2015
Judicial independence and impartiality are core values of all justice systems in liberal democracies. The need to maintain independence and, importantly, an appearance of independence can, however, lead to judicial isolation. Judicial isolation sometimes makes it difficult for both judges and scholars to identify areas of research where the judiciary could benefit from academic investigation. Formalized venues of judicial education not only provide opportunities for continued judicial education, but also have the potential to promote exchanges among judges and between judges and legal scholars. Given appropriate framework conditions of confidentiality and open discourse, these exchanges can lead to the articulation of research needs and suggested avenues of meeting these needs. In this paper, we reflect on both the opportunities and the challenges associated with judicial education seminars as a venue for academics and judges to identify research needs and work collaboratively to pursue research that meets those needs. We begin by describing our own experience with participation in judicial education seminars on the topic of judicial disqualification. We then discuss the ethical and practical considerations we had to take into account in doing this work. Finally, we suggest why we believe that, with some important limitations, participation in judicial education can provide mutually beneficial opportunities for scholars and judges to identify useful research projects and collaborate in the conduct of that research.
Keywords: judicial education, research ethics, judicial ethics, judicial disqualification
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation