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What is the net worth? Young people, civil justice and the Internet

Denvir, CE; (2014) What is the net worth? Young people, civil justice and the Internet. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Over the last decade the Internet has played a growing role in the resolution strategies of many of those who face ‘civil justice problems’. While many who use the Internet do so in order to locate offline sources of advice, as access to traditional forms of legal advice diminishes, the Internet is likely to play an increasingly important role in legal self-help. This thesis explores how and when young people in England and Wales use the Internet to resolve housing and employment law problems, as well as the quality of the main information resources available to them. In exploring this, the study draws on: existing publicly available data from the Civil and Social Justice Survey (CSJS) and Civil and Social Justice Panel Survey (CSJPS); new data obtained from 208 young people aged 15-26 who participated in a novel experiment designed to test how they acquired information from the Internet when faced with a housing/employment law dilemma; and, new data collected from a website review which assessed the overall quality of the main English and Welsh legal information websites. The study finds that while the Internet holds potential as a legal self-help tool, online legal information does not directly equate to improved individual legal capability. The potential the Internet holds, continues to be constrained by the quality of information provided online and the public’s capacity to use it and apply it in a meaningful way. Findings encourage ongoing investment in online resources, but suggest that investment in public legal services must remain diversely distributed across a range of mode-types (online, telephone and face-to-face). Results are contextualised within the history of online legal services, recent policy developments, as well as the existing literature relating to access to justice, human-computer interaction, problem-solving behaviour and adolescent development.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: What is the net worth? Young people, civil justice and the Internet
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Laws
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1437397
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