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Judicial resilience

Why is judicial resilience important, and how does it work? Prof. Ching-Fu Lin discusses them in this article.

When analyzing the adoption of algorithmic tools in court systems, we find that their use is influenced by the type of government, the judiciary’s progressiveness, and public trust in AI. A pivotal element in this realm is “judicial resilience,” which means the judiciary’s capacity to integrate new tech without compromising core legal principles.

In the AI era, understanding this resilience becomes crucial, especially when considering the impact of algorithmic tools.

We need to determine:

  1. Do these tools support or replace judges?
  2. How much authority is given to these algorithms?
  3. Do algorithmic decisions touch upon core societal values?
  4. What effect do these decisions have on a defendant’s rights and responsibilities?
By evaluating these aspects, we can gauge the algorithms’ influence on judicial systems. Judicial resilience can be illustrated by examining three pillars of judicial decision-making: discretion, independence, and the duty to explain decisions.
While algorithms might aid certain aspects, they can’t fully replicate a judge’s ability to consider broader societal dynamics. In today’s fast-evolving tech landscape, it’s vital that the essence of discretion remains untouched.
Independence poses another challenge. With algorithms at play, can judges remain uninfluenced by their suggestions? The new focus might be ensuring the independence of judges even when aided by AI, and possibly using algorithms to shield them from undue influences.
Duty to give reason
The duty to provide reasoning is paramount, primarily for a defendant’s right to appeal. Algorithmic tools can be a blessing and a curse here. They might make justifications complex but could also offer deeper, data-backed rationales for decisions.
Algorithmic tools in the judiciary present both opportunities and challenges. While they can enhance a judge’s ability to deliver detailed, data-driven decisions, they can also make the justification of those decisions more intricate. In this discussion, our aim isn’t to dictate regulations or prohibitions regarding these tools. Instead, we should introspect on our foundational values within the judiciary, determine how algorithms can fortify and advance these values, and identify uses that should be sidestepped to safeguard essential rights.
© Ching-Fu Lin and NTHU, proofread by ChatGPT
This article is from the free online

AI Ethics, Law, and Policy

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