Supporting Discretionary Decision-Making with Information Technology: A Case Study in the Criminal Sentencing Jurisdiction
36 Pages Posted: 16 Aug 2005
A number of increasingly sophisticated technologies are now being used to support complex decision-making in a range of contexts. This paper reports on a project undertaken to provide decision support in discretionary legal domains by referring to a recently created model that involves the interplay and weighting of relevant rule-based and discretionary factors used in a decision-making process. The case study used in the modelling process is the Criminal Jurisdiction of the Victorian Magistrate's Court (Australia), where the handing down of an appropriate custodial or non-custodial sentence requires the consideration of many factors. Tools and techniques used to capture relevant expert knowledge and to display it both as a paper model and as an online prototype application are discussed. Models of sentencing decision-making with rule-based and discretionary elements are presented and analyzed. This paper concludes by discussing the benefits and disadvantages of such technology and considers some potential appropriate uses of the model and web-based prototype application.
JEL Classification: K14, K40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation