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German Bar Association Discusses ODR

It was a pleasure to be invited to speak on developments in Online Dispute Resolution at the German Bar Association Annual Conference held in Hamburg on the 11th to 13th June 2015.

The main theme and title for the event was "Conflict Resolution Is Changing. Is Law Losing Authority?" The event was held at the main Conference Centre in Hamburg.

My session was primarily a panel discussion led by Markus Hartung, Director of the Bucerius Center on the Legal Profession in Hamburg. Other panelists were Bettina Limperg, President of the Federal Court of Justice of Karlsruhe, Pia Eberhardt, Consultant for trade and investment policy, Corporate EuropeObservatory, Brussels, Prof. Dr. Hubert Rottleuthner, Sociologist of Law, formerly Freie Universität Berlin and Dr. Patricia Nacimiento, Frankfurt/Main. I spoke about how courts and justice systems were begining to look towards ODR (Online Dispute Resolution) to both reduce public cost whilst at the same time increasing access to, and quality of, justice.

There is a short video of the highlights of the discussion that can be viewed here. My contribution commences at 2mns 31s. The whole video is of course in German. If you are impressed with my German, don't be. I was dubbed! The session gained some publicity in a major newspaper (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung) which headlined with the phrase that I took from the Report of the ODR Advisory Group to the Civil Justice Council, that we should begin to look at the Court as a service rather than as a building and ,as such, providing the service online was something that is an expected development which will produce opportunities that lawyers should embrace rather than challenge.

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