Government response

HMCTS publishes response to report on use of data

HM Courts & Tribunals Service welcomes recommendations of Dr Natalie Byrom’s report on use of data.

Photograph of people sitting around a desk in office

Dr Natalie Byrom, Director of Research and Learning at The Legal Education Foundation (TLEF), has today (2 October 2019) published the findings and recommendations of her report into the use of data by the HMCTS Reform Programme.

HMCTS brought in Dr Byrom during autumn 2018 to advise on strategies to enhance the organisation’s academic engagement and improve how it makes data available for research purposes, having long recognised these as areas for prioritisation.

Susan Acland-Hood responds to Dr Natalie Byrom report

Today’s report marks the conclusion of this vital piece of work.

Responding to today’s report, Susan Acland-Hood, the CEO of HMCTS said:

I want to thank Natalie wholeheartedly for her hard work and dedication in delivering this report. I welcome her findings and recommendations, which will be crucial in informing how we continue to create, manage and apply data to underpin the Reform Programme, in particular how we evaluate the programme.

We have already made good progress in many of the areas highlighted and, alongside the senior judiciary and Ministry of Justice, will work carefully through all recommendations before setting our plans in full.

TLEF Chief Executive, Matthew Smerdon added:

The foundation believes it is vital that people are able to understand and use the law, which means decisions about providing access to justice must be based on clear and robust evidence. My colleague Dr Natalie Byrom has developed unique expertise in this field, through her work and extensive research.

We were delighted that HMCTS invited Natalie to act as an independent expert to the courts Reform Programme, which shows how committed chief executive Susan Acland-Hood and her team are to delivering justice to all court users.

Dr Natalie Byrom - Digital Justice Report

Dr Byrom’s final report and recommendations are published below.

Digital Justice: HMCTS data strategy and delivering access to justice

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Earlier in the year Sir Richard Heaton, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Justice, wrote to the chair of the Public Accounts Committee, announcing an external advisory panel for the evaluation of the Reform Programme. Dr Byrom will sit as a member of the panel, which is one of a number of ways that evidence and data are being used to assess the impact of the programme.

Published 2 October 2019