Improving Access to Justice through the Strategic Analysis of Litigation Events
Using machine learning, the project will engage in large-scale analysis of the U.S. court system, examining thousands of pages of records to answer public interest attorneys’ questions, provide guidance on where federal courts in Texas fail to operate justly and assist public interest attorneys in advocating for systemic change. The project’s community partners, who represent low-income and historically underrepresented groups, drive the project by asking questions that are central to their public interest mission. Using the answers that are uncovered by conducting systematic, empirical analysis of court records, community partners can better litigate their cases and advocate for policy changes that bring about systemic reforms in our justice system.
Additionally, to foster sustained interest in the use of public interest technology to support access to justice issues, the team will offer workshops, demonstrations, and trainings for university legal clinics, nonprofit community legal groups, and other volunteer attorney networks by attending two key conferences, one national and one in Texas (where pro bono attorneys gather).
Amy Kristin Sanders, Associate Professor of Journalism and Law
Faculty and Institution Building
The PIT-UN Social Justice Informatics Faculty Fellows Program
Achieving social justice is a global challenge of our time, and requires strategic partnerships among universities, government, and nonprofits. We propose to build a city-wide collaboration that can work toward achieving social justice in Austin, Texas through complementary expertise in social justice and public interest technology. This project will bring together faculty fellows with diverse backgrounds and expertise to learn from and collaborate with community organizations to create a community of practice around social justice informatics. Twenty-four faculty fellows will primarily be drawn from a large flagship university (UT-Austin) and a small HBCU (Huston-Tillotson U.) and will partner with government and community organizations.
Kenneth R. Fleischmann, Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies, School of Information
Strengthening the Public Interest Tech University Network
The PIT-UN Undergraduate Informatics Education for Public Interest Technology Conference
Top-5 iSchools UT-Austin and U. of Michigan will jointly organize a conference and develop an online community to bring together researchers and educators aiming to align undergraduate (UG) informatics education with public interest technology (PIT), generating a toolkit promoting UG PIT education.
Kenneth R. Fleischmann, Associate Professor, University of Texas, Austin, School of Information, Amelia Acker, Assistant Professor, UT-Austin; Patricia Garcia, Assistant Professor, University Michigan, School of Information; Eric T. Meyer, Dean and the Mary R. Boyvey Chair and Louis T. Yule Regents Professor, University of Texas, Austin; Casey Pierce, Assistant Professor, University of Michigan, School of Information and Kentaro Toyama, W.K. Kellogg Professor of Community Information, University of Michigan, School of Information