Models for a Global System for Free Access to Legal Information: The WorldLII Approach

Chapter in Stephan Weth and Samuel van Oostrom, eds. Festschrift für Maximilian Herberger, juris GmbH, Saarbrücken 2016, p. 193ff.

18 Pages Posted: 7 Jan 2017

See all articles by Philip Chung

Philip Chung

University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Faculty of Law

Graham Greenleaf

University of New South Wales, Faculty of Law

Andrew Mowbray

University of Technology Sydney, Faculty of Law

Date Written: July 20, 2016

Abstract

Since the development of the World Wide Web made possible the emergence of large scale free access to legal information via the Internet from the early 1990s onward and particularly since the formation of the Free Access to Law Movement (FALM) in 2002, it has been a goal of some free-access legal publishers to work toward the development of one or more systems providing free access to legal information of global or near-global scope.

This paper first discusses six models that such attempts can and have followed. It then focuses on one such attempt, the development since 2002 of the World Legal Information Institute (WorldLII) using what we call a free access hybrid distributed model. It involves the collaboration of at least ten legal information institutes (LIIs). By the end of 2015 WorldLII provided access to over 1800 databases. The paper analyses its components, and particularly how the LawCite citator is the 'glue' between them; and the standards on which WorldLII relies.

Keywords: Free access to law, AustLII, WorldLII, hypertext, text retrieval, search engines, data mining

Suggested Citation

Chung, Philip and Greenleaf, Graham and Mowbray, Andrew, Models for a Global System for Free Access to Legal Information: The WorldLII Approach (July 20, 2016). Chapter in Stephan Weth and Samuel van Oostrom, eds. Festschrift für Maximilian Herberger, juris GmbH, Saarbrücken 2016, p. 193ff.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2893576

Philip Chung

University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Faculty of Law ( email )

Kensington, New South Wales 2052
Australia

Graham Greenleaf (Contact Author)

University of New South Wales, Faculty of Law ( email )

Sydney, New South Wales 2052
Australia
+61 2 9385 2233 (Phone)
+61 2 9385 1175 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www2.austlii.edu.au/~graham

Andrew Mowbray

University of Technology Sydney, Faculty of Law ( email )

Sydney
Australia

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