The IJIS Institute and the National Center for State Courts hosted the third annual Courts Industry Summit on September 17-18, 2018, at the Vinoy Renaissance in St. Petersburg, Florida. The purpose of the event is to provide an opportunity for industry technology leaders to engage in free-flowing discussion with leaders of Conference of State Court Administrators (COSCA), National Association for Court Management (NACM), and the Court Information Technology Officers Consortium (CITOC), and representatives from the IJIS Institute, the National Center for State Courts (NCSC), and the Administrative Office of the United States Courts.
The objective of this two-day event was to provide industry with insights on the current and emerging technology needs of the courts over the next two to six years. Working side by side, court and industry technology leaders identified business problems, brainstormed opportunities, and charted a course for future court technology.
The event started with a welcome from the Summit hosts, Joe Wheeler, chair of the IJIS Institute’s Courts Advisory Committee, and Paul Embley, CIO for the National Center for State Courts. Joe provided a brief history of the outcomes of the previous Summits.
- The first Summit in 2016 focused on large unified and decentralized courts, specialty court opportunities, standards, and trends. Major problems/opportunities discussed included: online dispute resolution, triage of lifecycle, integration of data sharing, online self-help systems, management of court consumers, language access, digital analytics, and risk assessments.
- The 2017 Summit discussed numerous topics including: the court component model, courts disputed, online dispute resolution, triage, fines, fees and bail, federal perspective, and the state court administrator perspective. Four opportunities identified in 2017 were: litigant portal, court component model, the provider directory, and a procurement summit. The latter two opportunities have been acted upon. Thanks to the hard work of the IJIS Courts Advisory Committee, the Court Provider Directory has been developed and currently includes 50 companies and will soon be over 100. It is now online at https://icacprovdir.ijis.org/. A Court Technology Procurement Reform Workshop for court leaders and technology staff, court technology vendors, and RFP consultants was conducted in November of 2017 by the National Center for State Courts in collaboration with COSCA, NACM, CITOC, the IJIS Institute Courts Advisory Committee, and the Trial Courts of Maricopa County.
- Next, Joe Wheeler described the purpose, objectives, and opportunities, for the next two days. Joe outlined how the Summits provide industry access to court leaders to gain insights about business plans and future IT investments.
The following sessions were presented on day one, each followed by a facilitated discussion:
- The rear window is clear, the front window a mess. It is easy to see where we’ve been, but hard to tell where we’re going.
- Court Perspectives: where will time, money and resources be allocated over the next 3-5 years?
- Priorities and Predictions for 2018: Joint Technology Committee & Global Justice Information Sharing Advisory Committee
- Industry Perspectives - What technology trends have industry participants witnessed in other sectors? What technology challenges are unique to the judicial branch? Which cutting-edge strategies could assure sustainable private-sector development and improved access to justice?
- Procurement Summit
- Court Component Model: What’s Missing? What Interfaces Are Needed? Are There Logical Product Groupings?
The day concluded with participants submitting their top four court-related business problems in writing.
On the second day of the event, Di Graski formed breakout groups to brainstorm on each of the identified business problems. At the end of the working groups, each reported out the group’s discussions or resolutions to the full audience after the intensive session. The four identified problems from this Courts Industry Summit were:
- Fostering Public Private Partnerships – How can we enable these partnerships?
- Open Data Standards, Court Component Model
- Communication to improve responsiveness to courts urgent needs
- Enhanced Procurement Processes - What would a wide-open RFP look like?
In addition to these top four topics, CTOC members met to discuss top CTOC issues.
Leveraging the breakout groups’ recommendations, participants then identified and assigned appropriate follow-up actions stemming from the 2018 Courts Industry Summit. One of the next steps identified was to take some existing RFPs and convert to the Court Component Model by restructuring it, better defining it, and prioritizing which capabilities are most important. The IJIS Courts Advisory Committee agreed to help with developing templates.
Joe Wheeler did an outstanding job in hosting and facilitating the Summit and has been a great leader of the IJIS Courts Advisory Committee, spearheading many key initiatives related to advancing public-sector technology and information sharing in the courts domain. With the information gained in this Summit, the IJIS Courts Advisory Committee will continue to further the IJIS mission in the courts arena. If you are interested in joining the Courts Advisory Committee and getting involved in the IJIS Institute, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.