Developing the effectiveness of civil justice in European human rights jurisprudence: a critique
PhD student: Mr A. Matić
Promotor: Prof C.H. van Rhee
Duration: 1/10/2012 - 31/12/2015
PhD defence: Maastricht, 26/4/2017
The research seeks to make a theoretical contribution to the discussion of justice policy and civil procedural law by analysing the European human rights legal framework that influences the development of national justice institutions today. The object of study is the case law of the European Court of Human Rights, notably on the basis of the \"fair trial\" guarantee found in Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights, and in particular the conceptual elaboration of standards, doctrines and justifications that have served as the basis of that Court\'s attempt to improve the functioning of national judicial systems in terms of their overall effectiveness. The study will be divided into two parts. The first explores the context, the conceptualisation of the idea of effectiveness in the field of civil justice and the international legal basis for adjudication in this domain. It will start by outlining the evolving international discourse on the rule of law as the preeminent legal discourse that posits the effectiveness of law and notably that of civil justice as its basic tenet, contrasting it with the traditional notion of the rule of law or Rechtstaat which promoted individual freedom and equality in relation to states. Second, it examines in detail the current debate on the state of civil justice and the uncertainties associated with defining its broad objectives, proposing a simple set of three discrete parameters that should form the basis of effectiveness, namely the length, cost and predictability of proceedings. Third, it will turn to the current international and European law and identifies the formal legal basis on which criteria of effectiveness of justice could be set on the basis of legal interpretation and judicial deliberation. The second part of the study will then examine these three parameters as they have been taken into consideration in the rulings of the European Court of Human Rights and looks in detail into how they have been established and justified conceptually.