Judges and court lawyers should expect to take a memory stick into court rather than boxes of books and papers, the Lord Justice Clerk said in a keynote conference address today.
In her keynote address to the 21st Century Bar Conference 2017, a joint venture of the Facultyb of Advocates and the In-house Lawyers' Committee of the Law Society of Scotland, Lady Dorrian covered the themes of vulnerable witnesses, digitisation of the courts and case management.
Digitisation of the courts, she said, was a direction which everyone knew should be taken, and the public probably expected entirely electronic processes.
Where judges in the past might need "four or five boxes of books and papers to be humped in and out of court" for a case, she now simply carried a memory stick.
"We need to look at issues with new ambitious eyes, and harness the opportunities presented by technology", she added.
"It is no small thing to promote changes in law and practice. It takes time, imagination and careful and diligent thought, and it takes a good deal of patience. But it is time, imagination, thought and patience well worth expending if, at the end of the process, we have a modern, adaptable, efficient and accessible legal system."
Calling on court practitioners to play their part in in creasing efficiency, Lady Dorrian said judges were now much more active in managing cases, but success depended also on others.
"All of us, not just judges but solicitors and advocates too, have a part to play in ensuring the efficient disposal of business in our courts", she told the audience at the Faculty of Advocates’ Mackenzie Building.