Chapter 21: Access to justice
Restricted access

Empirical research into access to justice is enjoying a renaissance. The new research resonates strongly with the concerns and approaches of the new legal realism. Contemporary access to civil justice research comprises four distinct approaches, each reflecting the intersection of two different dimensions framing scholars’ research questions. One reflects a choice between manifestations of law as the reference point of the research: the “law on the books” or the “law in action.” The other reflects how researchers define access to justice, understanding it as principally about process, or as some kind of substantive experience, result or outcome. More of the new research is moving beyond a narrow focus on the evaluation of specific interventions, and more is appearing in peer-reviewed venues, subject to disciplines’ requirements for scientific rigor and theoretical engagement and engaged in broader scientific conversations. This new activity is the foundation for development of a robust and coherent access to justice research agenda that can enrich understanding of what law is and how it works.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Other access options

Redeem Token

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institutional Access

Personal login

Log in with your Elgar Online account

Login with your Elgar account
Handbook