Thinking About Law & Accessing Civil Justice: Legal Consciousness, Dispute Processing, and Civil Legal Needs Today

Friday, February 7 at 2:30pm to 4:00pm

Education Building (EDU), 1131
401 East Peltason Drive Irvine, CA 92697-8000

Problems with civil legal implications are incredibly common in everyday life. Yet only a fraction of individuals who experience a civil legal problem will engage legal actors or institutions to address it. While some individuals are able to obtain satisfying and just outcomes without recourse to law, others are not. How do individuals’ knowledge and beliefs about law and legal institutions influence their behavior? How are these beliefs formed? What does this tell us about things we can do to enhance access to civil justice? This conference will bring together leading scholars to address these questions about how individuals think about law and the implications for access to civil justice. The conference will include several paper workshopping sessions, followed by a public panel presentation and reception. Papers presented at the conference will be eligible for inclusion in a symposium issue of the UCI Law Review.


  • Monica Bell, Associate Professor of Law, Yale Law School
  • Tonya Brito, Jefferson Burrus-Bascom Professor of Law, University of Wisconsin School of Law
  • Sean Farhang, Elizabeth Josselyn Boalt Professor of Law, UC Berkeley School of Law
  • Hugh McDonald, Principal Researcher, Victoria Law Foundation, Melbourne, Australia
  • Emily Ryo, Professor of Law and Sociology, USC Gould School of Law
  • Rebecca Sandefur, Professor, School of Social and Family Dynamics, Arizona State University, Faculty Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Emily Taylor Poppe, Assistant Professor of Law, UCI Law
  • Kathryne Young, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
Event Type



Students, Alumni, General Public, Prospective Students, Faculty, Staff



Civil Justice Research Initiative, UCI Law
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