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Artikel

Access_open Het effect van een pro Justitia-rapportage op de bewijsbeslissing: een empirische verkenning

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden Pro Justitia, Guilt, Conviction, Forensic mental health report
Auteurs Roosmarijn van Es MSc., Dr. Janne van Doorn, Prof. dr. Jan de Keijser e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    A forensic mental health report is requested in about 30% of more serious cases presented to the criminal court. These reports can be used at sentencing and advise the judge on criminal responsibility, recidivism risk, and possible treatment measures, but is not a formal factor in decisions about guilt. The current study focuses on the (unwarranted) effect of forensic mental health information on conviction decisions. Using an experimental vignette study among 155 criminology students, results show that when a mental disorder is present, conviction rates are higher than when such information is absent. In line with the story model of judicial decision-making, additional analyses showed that this effect was mediated by the evaluation of guilt rather than by the evaluation of other physical evidence. Implications for further research and practice are discussed.


Roosmarijn van Es MSc.
Roosmarijn van Es is promovenda bij het Instituut voor Strafrecht en Criminologie aan Universiteit Leiden. Haar onderzoek richt zich op de rol van informatie in pro Justitia-rapportages in rechterlijke beslissingen over bewijs en straf.

Dr. Janne van Doorn
Janne van Doorn is universitair docent bij het Instituut voor Strafrecht en Criminologie aan Universiteit Leiden.

Prof. dr. Jan de Keijser
Jan de Keijser is hoogleraar Criminologie bij het Instituut voor Strafrecht en Criminologie aan Universiteit Leiden.

Prof. dr. mr. Maarten Kunst
Maarten Kunst is hoogleraar Criminologie bij het Instituut voor Strafrecht en Criminologie aan Universiteit Leiden.
Artikel

Upperdogs Versus Underdogs

Judicial Review of Administrative Drug-Related Closures in the Netherlands

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden Eviction, War on drugs, Party capability, Empirical legal research, Drug policy
Auteurs Mr. Michelle Bruijn en Dr. Michel Vols
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the Netherlands, mayors are entitled to close public and non-public premises if drug-related activities are being conducted there. Using data from the case law of Dutch lower courts, published between 2008 and 2016, this article examines the relative success of different types of litigants, and the influence of case characteristics on drug-related closure cases. We build on Galanter’s framework of ‘repeat players’ and ‘one-shotters’, to argue that a mayor is the stronger party and is therefore more likely to win in court. We categorise mayors as ‘upperdogs’, and the opposing litigants as ‘underdogs’. Moreover, we distinguish stronger mayors from weaker ones, based on the population size of their municipality. Similarly, we distinguish the stronger underdogs from the weaker ones. Businesses and organisations are classified as stronger parties, relative to individuals, who are classified as weaker parties. In line with our hypothesis, we find that mayors win in the vast majority of cases. However, contrary to our presumptions, we find that mayors have a significantly lower chance of winning a case if they litigate against weak underdogs. When controlling for particular case characteristics, such as the type of drugs and invoked defences, our findings offer evidence that case characteristics are consequential for the resolution of drug-related closure cases in the Netherlands.


Mr. Michelle Bruijn
Michelle Bruijn is promovendus en docent aan de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen. Haar onderzoek richt zich op de regulering van cannabis en de sluiting van drugspanden.

Dr. Michel Vols
Michel Vols is hoogleraar Openbare-Orderecht aan Rijksuniversiteit Groningen. Zijn onderzoek richt zich op Openbare orde en veiligheid, en het gebruik van data science (machine learning) bij het bestuderen van juridische data.
Artikel

Het werk van Wibo van Rossum – een bloemlezing

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Wibo van Rossum, Legal anthropology, Administration of Justice, Empirical research, The Netherlands
Auteurs Dr. mr. Marc Simon Thomas en Prof. mr. Rick Verschoof
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article is about the work of Wibo van Rossum who passed away in April 2018. Trained as a legal anthropologist he has conducted empirical research on the administration of justice in the Netherlands for many years. This anthology is about four research reports he produced and many articles he has written in two decades. This article provides an academic as well as a practical review of his work.


Dr. mr. Marc Simon Thomas
Marc Simon Thomas is universitair docent aan de Universiteit Utrecht.

Prof. mr. Rick Verschoof
Rick Verschoof is senior rechter en bijzonder hoogleraar rechtspraak aan de Universiteit Utrecht.
Artikel

Empiricism as an ethical enterprise. On the work of Erhard Blankenburg

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 3 2018
Trefwoorden Empiricism, Erhard Blankenburg, mobilization of law, legal instruments, problems and disputes
Auteurs Prof. dr. Pieter Ippel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article gives an interpretation of the empirical work of the well-known sociologist of law Erhard Blankenburg, who passed away in the Spring of 2018. He conducted interesting and intelligent research on the process of ‘mobilization of law’. The thesis of this article is that Blankenburg’s empirical approach is actually guided and stimulated by normative considerations. A complete and coherent picture of the concrete utilization of legal instruments shows that ‘alternative’ ways of dealing with problems and disputes are often morally preferable as they are inspired by a realistic assessment of persons-in-a-social-context.


Prof. dr. Pieter Ippel
Pieter Ippel is professor of law at University College Roosevelt (Middelburg) and Utrecht University. He studied philosophy, criminology and Dutch Law. From 1981-1987 he worked as an assistant with Erhard Blankenburg and finished his PhD in 1989. From 1989-1995 he worked as a civil servant in The Hague and from 1995-2005 he was professor of jurisprudence in Utrecht.
Artikel

Het besluitvormingsproces van civiele rechters in procedures over de gevolgen van een (echt)scheiding met een beschuldiging van seksueel kindermisbruik

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 2 2017
Trefwoorden Family law, Child sexual abuse, Divorce, Custody and access
Auteurs Anne Smit MSc., Prof. dr. mr. Catrien Bijleveld en Prof. dr. mr. Masha Antokolskaia
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This study aims to provide insight into allegations of child sexual abuse in the context of divorce, and related, proceedings by analyzing the decision-making process of civil judges. To this aim, interviews with 13 judges and 11 lawyers were conducted and a focus group was organized with different specialists. It is concluded that in the eyes of the judges, allegations of child sexual abuse in this context are not rare, and some of the professionals signal an increase of allegations in the last decade. The presence of an allegation poses a dual issue: it points out problems within the family, as well as causes problems for the child. This dual nature makes it even more complex for judges to make decisions, especially concerning contact between father and child. The validity of the allegation becomes less important than its presence when judges consider the children’s best interests. The judges’ aim to create conditions for the family within which the child’s safety is best protected, can as an unwanted consequence delay the process, which in itself can be damaging for the child.


Anne Smit MSc.
Anne Smit is promovenda bij het NSCR waar zij werkt aan haar proefschrift ‘Allegations of Sexual Abuse of Children in Divorce Procedures: Towards Evidence-Based Guidelines’.

Prof. dr. mr. Catrien Bijleveld
Catrien Bijleveld is directeur van het Nederlands Studiecentrum Criminaliteit en Rechtshandhaving.

Prof. dr. mr. Masha Antokolskaia
Masha Antokolskaia is hoogleraar privaatrecht, in het bijzonder personen- en familierecht aan de Vrije Universiteit te Amsterdam.
Artikel

Voorbij procedurele rechtvaardigheid

De betrekkelijkheid van de beleving van respondenten

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 2 2017
Trefwoorden Procedural Justice, Administrative law, Access to Justice, Outcomes of legal proceedings
Auteurs Dr. Nienke Doornbos
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    To overcome problems of juridification and formalization of administrative law, successful initiatives have been undertaken by professionals in the public administration and judiciary to improve administrative procedures. These initiatives have been inspired by theories of (perceived) procedural justice, as developed by Tyler and Lind (1988). Although the author acknowledges the importance of procedural justice, she argues that the strong focus on procedural aspects, based on subjective opinions of claimants, may unintentionally lead to a situation in which other important issues may be easily overlooked, such as the question why citizens would refrain from starting a lawsuit or the question what explains the low success rates of citizens in administrative law.


Dr. Nienke Doornbos
Nienke Doornbos is universitair docent bij de Afdeling Algemene rechtsleer van de Faculteit Rechtsgeleerdheid, Universiteit van Amsterdam.
Artikel

De civiele rechter als problem solver

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 2 2017
Trefwoorden legal profession, conflict resolution, procedural justice
Auteurs Dr. Wibo van Rossum en Prof. Rick Verschoof
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    We investigate a recent development in the practice of the civil courts: judges increasingly devote attention to the underlying conflict of parties instead of only to their legal dispute. In administrative law, this development has already been codified and termed ‘de Nieuwe zaaksbehandeling’, but not so in other areas of law.
    Lawyers know that social conflicts are transformed into legally viable disputes so that the court can decide on them. For a long time, the most important task for lawyers was to resolve those legal disputes. Nowadays, that does not seem to be enough: judges should become problem solvers. Civil judges seem to blend in with these new requirements, but the question is whether the new approach really works. Based on our empirical material of 100 observed cases in civil law, we answer the following questions. 1. What do judges actually do in civil cases when they address underlying conflicts and try to steer parties toward a settlement? 2. What effects do these interventions of judges have on the outcome of cases? 3. How are these interventions perceived by the parties in terms of procedural justice?


Dr. Wibo van Rossum
Wibo van Rossum is Universitair Hoofddocent aan het departement Sociology, Theory & Methodology van de Erasmus School of Law te Rotterdam.

Prof. Rick Verschoof
Rick Verschoof is senior-rechter bij de Rechtbank Midden-Nederland en bijzonder hoogleraar rechtspraak aan de Universiteit Utrecht.
Artikel

Framing labor contracts: Contract versus network theories

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 3 2016
Trefwoorden contract theory, Network theory, Labor regulation, subjectivity, performativity
Auteurs Robert Knegt
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Since the 18th century the ‘contractual model’ has become both a paradigm of social theories (f.i. ‘rational choice’) and a dominant model of structuring labour relations. Its presupposition of the subjectivity of individual actors as a given is criticized with reference to network-based theories (Latour, Callon) and to analyses of Foucault. The current contract model of labour relations is analyzed from a historical perspective on normative regimes of labour relations, that imply different conceptions of ‘subjectivity’. Research into the regulation of labour relations requires an analysis in terms of an entanglement of human beings, technologies and legal discourse.


Robert Knegt
Senior researcher at Hugo Sinzheimer Institute, University of Amsterdam
Artikel

Autonomy of law in Indonesia

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 3 2016
Trefwoorden Rule of law, Indonesia, Socio-legal studies, Legal scholarhip, Judiciary
Auteurs Professor Adriaan Bedner
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article seeks to answer how useful the theoretical approaches developed in Europe and the United States are for explaining or understanding the autonomy of law in Indonesia – a nation that is on the verge of becoming a lower-middle-income country and whose legal system presents many of the features found in other developing countries’ legal systems. The article first sketches three lines of theoretical thought that have dominated the inquiry into autonomy of law in (Western) sociology and then assesses to what extent they are represented in the socio-legal studies of Indonesian law. The conclusion is that although socio-legal scholars studying developing countries need supplementary concepts and theories, they can use the Western ones as their point of departure in understanding the functioning of law in a setting that is very different from the one in which these theories were developed.


Professor Adriaan Bedner
Adriaan Bedner is professor of law and society in Indonesia at the Van Vollenhoven Institute (Leiden Law School). He has worked on many different subjects within this field, including family law, administrative courts, and environmental law. His present focus is on the Indonesian Ombudsman and on legal education.
Artikel

Understanding judges’ choices of sentence types as interpretative work: An explorative study in a Dutch police court

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 1 2016
Trefwoorden Judicial decision-making, sentencing type, (ir)redeemability, whole case approach
Auteurs Peter Mascini, Irene van Oorschot PhD, Assistant professor Don Weenink e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article critically evaluates the prevailing factor-oriented (e.g. a priori defined legal and extralegal characteristics of defendants) approach in analyses of judicial decision-making. Rather than assuming such factors, we aim to demonstrate how Dutch judges engage in interpretative work to arrive at various sentence types. In their interpretative work, judges attempt to weigh and compare various legal and extralegal features of defendants. Importantly, they do so in the context of the case as a whole, which means that these features do not have independent or fixed meanings. Judges select and weigh information to create an image of defendants’ redeemability. However, extralegal concerns other than redeemability also inform judges’ decisions. We argue that studying the naturally occurring interpretative work of judges results in a better understanding of judicial decision-making than outcome-oriented studies, which view criminal cases as collections of independent legal and extralegal factors.


Peter Mascini
Peter Mascini holds a chair in Empirical Legal Studies at the Erasmus School of Law of the Erasmus University Rotterdam, where he is also associate professor of sociology at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences. His research focuses on the legitimization, implementation, and enforcement of laws and policies.

Irene van Oorschot PhD
Irene van Oorschot is a PhD candidate at the Faculty of the Social Sciences at the Erasmus University Rotterdam and will soon start as a postdoctoral researcher at the Anthropology Department of the University of Amsterdam. Drawing on actor network theory and feminist studies of knowledge, her research focuses on legal and scientific modes of truth-production.

Assistant professor Don Weenink
Don Weenink is assistant professor of Sociology at the Department of Sociology at the University of Amsterdam. He has published work on, among other subjects, ethnic inequalities in judicial sentencing.

Gratiëlla Schippers
Gratiëlla Schippers has studied Sociology at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. For her master thesis she has done research about the understanding of judges’ choices of sentence types.
Artikel

The legacy and current relevance of Cappelletti and the Florence project on access to justice

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 3 2015
Trefwoorden definition and dimensions access to justice, recommendations, historic context access to justice, current context access to justice
Auteurs Bernard Hubeau
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This contribution explains what access to justice can encompass and how the ideals about access to justice have developed in time. The way to do this is going back to the work of the famous scholars Cappelletti and Garth, who were responsible for a worldwide project on access to justice in the 1970s. Their main issue was to explain access to justice is more than the access to a judge and the organization of courts. Primarily, the system must be equally accessible to all, irrespective of social or economic status or other incapacity. But it also must lead to results that are individually and socially just and fair. Equal access and effective access are the central notions. Their work is put in perspective. The importance of their legacy and the question how we can get along with their work are stressed. Their definition is compared to a few other authoritative definitions. The waves in the history of access to justice are described and putting them in the current context illustrates why a fourth waved can be observed. The major question to be answered is how one can assess the challenges and obstacles of access to justice in the current context. Therefore, some recent dimensions and developments within access to justice are presented: the democratic dimension, the effectiveness of new social rights, the attention for poor and vulnerable people, further juridification, expanding frontiers of and monitoring access to justice, e-justice, and self-help. Finally, a few building blocks for reforms are presented.


Bernard Hubeau
Bernard Hubeau is a full-time Professor in Sociology and Sociology of Law at the Faculty of Law of the University of Antwerp. He also teaches at the Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Antwerp and the Faculty of Law and Criminology of the University of Brussels. He is the former ombudsman of the city of Antwerp and of the Flemish Parliament.
Artikel

Access to justice: a dynamic concept

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 3 2015
Auteurs Mies Westerveld, Bernard Hubeau en Ashley Terlouw
Auteursinformatie

Mies Westerveld
Mies Westerveld is Professor Legal aid by special appointment and Professor in Labour Law (social insurance) at the University of Amsterdam. Her research concentrates on current issues of access to justice and state-financed legal aid on the one hand and the decreasing role of social insurance on a fragmented labour market on the other hand.

Bernard Hubeau
Bernard Hubeau is a full-time Professor in Sociology and Sociology of Law at the Faculty of Law of the University of Antwerp. He also teaches at the Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Antwerp and the Faculty of Law and Criminology of the University of Brussels. He is the former ombudsman of the city of Antwerp and of the Flemish Parliament.

Ashley Terlouw
Ashley Terlouw is Professor in Sociology of Law at the Radboud University of Nijmegen. She is responsible for the Centre for Migration Law of the Radboud University. Besides she is part-time Judge at the District Court of Gelderland. Her research concentrates on legal and societal issues of asylum and equal treatment and on the working of the judiciary.

    Access to justice for those who cannot afford it remains a serious and intractable problem. Financial shortfalls and austerity cuts have caused much of the free legal advice sector to contract. Recent gains in the economy have not been distributed to the poorest in society, many of whom view lawyers as expensive and inaccessible. The result has been a widening of the justice gap – one which can only be filled if new models based on digitalization and internet based technologies fulfill their potential and allow both law firms and major brands to provide more affordable services. A broader market based response to the coming shortfall in legal assistance is possible if unbundling can become standard among legal practitioners. Technology will enable citizens to be supported with targeted advice and information should they need it. It will also bring solicitor managed services to an increasingly wide segment of the public.


Richard Cohen
Richard Cohen founded Landau & Cohen Solicitors before joining Epoq in 1998 as Joint CEO and is now Executive Chairman and Head of Partnerships. He served on the Solicitors Regulation Authority working group for the introduction of alternative business structures and contributed to the Legal Services Institute’s study on the Legal Services Act and the Legal Services Consumer Panel relating to referrals. In 2011, Richard was nominated for the FT Innovative Lawyers Legal Innovator of the Year Award.

Humphrey Clarke
Humphrey Clarke has worked in business development and market research for both Epoq’s UK and US operations. He has over nine years’ experience working in the legal and insurance sectors and has contributed numerous research papers and articles for industry publications.
Artikel

Responsibilities of the state and legal professions

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 3 2015
Trefwoorden responsibilities, the state, lawyers, the judiciary and judges
Auteurs Mies Westerveld en Ashley Terlouw
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This contribution, which is based on the Dutch legal system, deals with the responsibilities of the State and legal professions in ensuring access to justice. The responsibilities of the four main players involved in bringing justice to the citizen are discussed: the legislator, the executive, the judiciary, and the legal profession. Responsibilities for access to justice do not only stem from the law, they do also evolve from societal problems and discussions. The contribution deals with both. Several actors share some of the responsibilities. One can think of responsibilities for information, for financing, and for being aware of vulnerabilities and other obstacles. What are the legal responsibilities and what other responsibilities are felt by the actors involved and how do they deal with them? And as a result: do they contribute to access to justice, do they form an obstacle, or both?


Mies Westerveld
Mies Westerveld is Professor Legal aid by special appointment and Professor in Labour Law (social insurance) at the University of Amsterdam. Her research concentrates on current issues of access to justice and state-financed legal aid on the one hand and the decreasing role of social insurance on a fragmented labour market on the other hand.

Ashley Terlouw
Ashley Terlouw is Professor in Sociology of Law at the Radboud University of Nijmegen. She is responsible for the Centre for Migration Law of the Radboud University. Besides she is part-time Judge at the District Court of Gelderland. Her research concentrates on legal and societal issues of asylum and equal treatment and on the working of the judiciary.
Artikel

De rechter als regisseur

Een verkennend onderzoek naar de ervaringen van rechtzoekenden en rechters met de nieuwe zaaksbehandeling in het bestuursrecht

Tijdschrift Recht der Werkelijkheid, Aflevering 1 2014
Trefwoorden administrative law, ADR, litigation, procedural fairness
Auteurs Yael Verkruisen en Nienke Doornbos
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article reports on an explorative empirical research project on the experiences and opinions of litigants and judges with respect to a new way of handling court cases in administrative law, in which an early contact between parties is initiated and the judge tries to solve the conflict via mediation techniques. Fourteen case files have been analyzed, fourteen court sessions have been observed and thirteen litigants and five judges have been interviewed. Considering the limited scope and the explorative character of the project, it obviously can provide no general or final conclusions. Nonetheless, the research does provide a number of useful indications regarding how the respondents have experienced the new way of working. It also shows how theories on litigation and procedural fairness are implemented by judges in the daily routine of court hearings.


Yael Verkruisen
Yael Verkruisen is masterstudente aan de Faculteit Rechtsgeleerdheid van de Universiteit van Amsterdam. Zij verrichtte in het kader van de minor Rechtswetenschappelijk onderzoek een onderzoeksstage bij de Rechtbank Utrecht en deed daar onderzoek naar de ervaringen van rechtzoekenden en rechters met de nieuwe zaaksbehandeling in bestuursrechtzaken.

Nienke Doornbos
Nienke Doornbos is universitair docent en onderzoeker bij de Faculteit Rechtsgeleerdheid van de Universiteit van Amsterdam. Zij doceert de minor Rechtswetenschappelijk onderzoek en het vak Recht en menselijk gedrag. Haar onderzoek richt zich onder meer op organisatorische kanten van rechterlijke besluitvorming en op toezicht en tuchtrecht binnen de advocatuur.
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