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Workshop 1: University of Warwick, 19 March 2014

Who should attend?

This workshop aims to bring together practitioners, civil society activists and academics with expertise in the issues affected by government changes to both criminal and civil legal aid. In doing so, we hope to stimulate dialogue and gather research and shared experience from the across the legal aid funded sector. In addition to charting the impact of the cuts as they have taken place, it is hoped that the session themes will enable attendees to focus on developing solutions to ameliorate the most iniquitous effects of the cuts and facilitate the development of proposals for future research. Working with colleagues from Monash University in Victoria, Australia provides an opportunity to develop international networks for assessing the impact of the cuts, as well as to learn lessons from other jurisdictions.

The workshop will consist of three sessions:

• The changing face of the legal profession

• The lawyer-client relationship

• The broader social consequences of cuts

Themes and scope of event

The three workshop themes are designed to promote discussion of the cross-cutting issues created by changes to both criminal and civil legal aid, with sessions designed to facilitate dialogue between practitioners and researchers in both areas of law. In addition, the attendance of delegates from Monash University will provide an opportunity to learn about the impact of cuts in their jurisdiction, and share ideas and best practice in tackling the cuts.

Structure and outputs

Each themed session will commence with a series of brief presentations by participants introducing the issues, with the majority of time dedicated to an extended discussion among the experts assembled. In Session 3, participants will be asked to divide into groups to discuss the broader social consequences of the cuts to legal aid, before reporting back to the group in a structured feedback session. A report of the day’s proceedings, including suggestions for next steps, will be published on this website shortly after the workshop.