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July 28, 2017


• The deadline for paper submissions is Thursday, August 24, 2017.
• Authors of selected papers will have the opportunity to travel to Mexico to present their work in September.

Today JSCA opened a regional paper competition for works to be presented at the international seminar “A New Civil Justice for Latin America: Discussions and Proposals,” which will take place September 25-27 in Mexico City. The event is co-sponsored by Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) Law School and the Ibero-American Procedure Law Institute.


The paper competition is divided into three categories and winning entries will be presented at three panels during the international seminar. These are:

1. Experiences with oral procedures in Mexico’s civil justice reforms
2. Experiences with oral procedures in Central America’s civil justice reforms
3. Innovative proposals for civil justice reform in Latin America

JSCA will select three papers for each category –nine in total- and will cover the winning authors’ transportation, per diem and lodging during the event in Mexico City.

The deadline for submissions is Thursday, August 24, 2017 in keeping with the guidelines set out and published on the Website The list of selected papers will be published on the sit on Monday, September 4.

For more information, including guidelines and requirements, see


The seminar, which will be held in September at UNAM, is designed to strengthen civil justice reform processes in the region through the exchange of experiences and innovative proposals as well as the creation of a network of stakeholders involved in civil justice reforms. The seminar also will serve to identify best practices and opportunities for civil justice reform, particularly in Mexico and Central America.

While the focus of justice reforms in the region has been on criminal justice systems, JSCA has been observing a significant civil justice reform movement. This has been motivated by factors such as the inefficiency and congestion of civil justice systems, excessive duration of the processes, the lack of public procedures and judicial immediacy, and the multiplication of judicial structures for resolving various civil matters. In addition, there is a significant need to increase access to justice for all sectors of the population in order to address the wide range of civil conflicts that have emerged in the region.

Mexico and Central American nations have participated in this reform movement. Mexico has included oral procedures in mercantile justice and alternative justice initiatives. Between 2010 and 2017, new civil procedure codes have gone into effect in El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua. Costa Rica is planning to do the same in 2018. All of this suggests that this seminar is a timely one.

The topics to be addressed include the integration of consensual dispute resolution mechanisms and formal justice; the role of justice systems in small claims cases; and the dynamic burden of proof and electronic or digital evidence. All of this will be examined from the perspective of civil justice reforms as justice public policies.

The event is being developed in the context of the multi-year project “Improving Access to Civil Justice in Latin America,” which JSCA is executing with the support of Global Affairs Canada in order to deploy multiple efforts to promote civil justice system reform in the region. This seminar is one such effort.



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