Legal Knowledge and Information Systems

JURIX 2008: The Twenty-First Annual Conference


Francesconi, E.,
Sartor, G.,
Tiscornia, D.

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From its very beginning, legal informatics was mostly limited to the study of legal databases, but very early on, the Institute of Legal Information Theory and Techniques (ITTIG) started being involved with the specific topic of the Jurix conference, namely knowledge-based systems.

This book includes programmatic papers with precise accounts of applications and prototypes. In many domains the focus has changed. For instance, research in retrieval has moved from classical boolean systems into the management of documents in the Web. It addresses in particular standards and methods for embedding machine readable information into such documents and search methods that deal with heterogeneous information. Similarly, with regard to legal concepts, the focus has moved from thesauri to ontologies or to techniques for the automatic extraction of concepts from natural language texts. In the domain of legal reasoning merely deductive inferences have been expanded with models of legal argumentation, dialogue and mediation.

The conference Logica, informatica e diritto 1981 and Jurix 2008 share the connection between theoretical models and the development of applications and prototypes. However, while in 1981 one could mostly see a juxtaposition of papers in legal theory and papers in computer applications, in 2008 we can see how discussions of issues in legal theory are embedded within contributions to legal informatics. This shows how research in legal informatics is increasingly becoming an autonomous domain of scientific inquiry by creatively incorporating and developing knowledge and methods from the two disciplines from which it originates (legal theory and computer science), while preserving links with them.

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