I want to introduce you to the Judicial Innovation Fellowship!
It is an brand new interdisciplinary program at Georgetown Law that places technologists and designers in state, local, and tribal courts to improve the public’s access to justice. The goal is to develop open, replicable, and scalable solutions that make courts more transparent, equitable, and efficient. It is also an opportunity to seed culture change in courts by helping usher in the adoption of modern technology and user design practices.
Our plan is to have our first cohort of fellows in courts around the US and tribal lands by September 2023.
Once placed, we anticipate our fellows will work on projects that improve data collection and interoperability, the usability of electronic filing, and incorporate user-design into public-facing court products. The injection of design and digital expertise across a range of carefully chosen court sites will prompt the emergence of replicable models and best practices, creating a multiplier effect that builds a 21st century justice system.
We are very excited about the potential of this program, and we need your help getting the word out. Our biggest goal right now is getting people to sign up for our info sessions and apply to be court partners and fellows. To that end, people can sign up through our homepage judicialinnovation.org or these two links:
You can also follow us on LinkedIn to know when applications open. If you want to receive updates, we have a mailing list sign up, as well. To help us reach more applicants, we would appreciate introductions to trade associations, affinity groups, and Slack channels that may be interested in this work, especially if they work with underrepresented technologists and designers.
Now, getting this far would not have been possible without an incredible group of people. At Georgetown, the indispensable Prof. Tanina Rostain and Natalie Roisman, who runs the Institute for Technology Law & Policy at Georgetown, provide invaluable support and leadership. Alongside Tanina and I, our co-founders include Jameson Dempsey, Miguel Willis, and Cori Zarek. Our powerhouse advisory committee includes Cyd Harrell, Elizabeth Lee Grossman, and Hon. Jennifer Bailey. Ashwin Ramaswami is our amazing fellow supporting this work. As for funding, the New Venture Fund and the Pew Charitable Trusts made that possible. And thank you to Schmidt Futures for naming me a Schmidt Innovation Fellow to support the pursuit of this program.
On a personal note, this project started for me last year when I was asked to help co-write a white paper about what a court technology fellowship program could look like. We published that piece in February, and now here we are with funding, institutional support, and a path forward. I’m astonished at what can happen in nine months. It's radical what can happen when ideas are put to paper.
Thank you very much for reading to the end. Future updates JIF will come through the channels mentioned above and the regular Monday dispatch of the JTDL. I look forward to sharing more with you soon!
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