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Lawyers and the Public Good
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Book description

For the 2010 Hamlyn Lectures, Alan Paterson explores different facets of three key institutions in a democracy: lawyers, access to justice and the judiciary. In the case of lawyers he asks whether professionalism is now in terminal decline. To examine access to justice, he discusses past and present crises in legal aid and potential endgames and in relation to judges he examines possible mechanisms for enhancing judicial accountability. In demonstrating that the benign paternalism of lawyers in determining the public good with respect to such issues is no longer unchallenged, he argues that the future roles of lawyers, access to justice and the judiciary will only emerge from dialogues with other stakeholders claiming to speak for the public interest.


'This book addresses the role of lawyers in pursuing the public good. By revealing how judges of the House of Lords and Supreme Court approach their task, Alan Paterson has contributed greatly to the transparency of the judicial process in our top court, and thereby advanced the public good in his own right.'

David Feldman - Rouse Ball Professor of English Law, University of Cambridge

'An excellent read, full of detail and fresh insights. What comes out of [Paterson's] writing is a commitment to the role and value of an independent profession. On legal aid [he] makes comparisons between England and Wales v. Scotland that certainly repay close reading.'

Professor Dame Hazel Genn - University College London

'The mandatory read for the tail-end of the festive season ... Paterson has wrestled expertly with these issues for decades and here, with characteristic directness, he lays out the challenges and opportunities for tomorrow's lawyers.'

Richard Susskind Source: The Times

'This is a timely, affordable and comprehensive text. … Lawyers of all creeds, students and interested observers (including politicians and judges) will all find something of interest in it.'

Source: The Edinburgh Law Review

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