The Evolving Role of the Prosecutor, Domestically and Internationally
Coordinators: Heather Douglas (T.C. Bierne School of Law, University of Queensland, Australia), Philip Stenning (School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Griffith University, Queensland, Australia)
Our experience in Oñati
Prosecutors play a key role in criminal justice systems around the world, yet their role has been largely neglected in scholarly literature. This workshop, which took place on the 28th and 29th July 2016, considered the evolving role of prosecutors, and the challenges both domestic and international prosecutors face in the 21st Century. The workshop addressed a number of key themes, beginning with a consideration of the relationship between prosecutors and vulnerable people. In this session papers considered the issues faced when prosecutors engage with victims of domestic violence or sexual abuse or with offenders who have a disability. Governance, accountability and independence was the second major theme, and scholars considered the separation of powers and how to ensure appropriate accountability in both common law and civil law systems. In another session the question of the role of the prosecutor in investigations was examined by several scholars speaking about different contexts. The next theme was the relationship between prosecutors and power, and the workshop concluded with some interesting recent prosecutorial developments and innovations, including 'community prosecutions', and deferred prosecution agreements in corporate cases. Established scholars, early career researchers and PhD students, representing eleven different countries on four continents, participated in the workshop, comparing experiences with a wide range of interconnecting issues.