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Primeur weekly 2017-04-10

Exascale supercomputing

EUROSERVER paves the way for low-power data centres ...

Intersect360 Research to provide USCC testimony for China's Pursuit of Next Frontier Tech hearing ...

Quantum computing

'Virtual' interferometers may overcome scale issues for optical quantum computers ...

Quantum-physical model system ...

Optics advance quantum information processing ...

Focus on Europe

A glance into the ISC 2017 Research Paper Session ...

OCF announce Iceotope as liquid cooling partner for research and academic market ...

Return of the mini-supercomputer in the Netherlands: Little Green Machine II ...

Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry chooses vSMP Foundation ...

PRACE opens SHAPE 5th Call for Proposals ...

IBM invests to accelerate innovation, collaboration and fast-track health care solutions in Finland ...

73% of academics say access to research data helps them in their work; 34% do not publish their data ...

Middleware

DDN Lustre powers University of Edinburgh accelerated genomics research ...

Hardware

Supercomputer growth drives record HPC revenue in 2016, Hyperion Research reports ...

Canada's most powerful academic supercomputer will launch at Simon Fraser University ...

Silicon Mechanics Announces Recipient of 6th Annual Research Cluster Grant ...

U.S. businesses risk falling behind as lead in global semiconductor industry threatened ...

Fujitsu and Oracle launch Fujitsu SPARC M12 servers with world's fastest per-core performance ...

IBM Researchers advance the understanding of chip reliability at IEEE International Reliability Physics Symposium ...

Applications

Artificial intelligence: Bosch and University of Amsterdam to cooperate closely ...

Cyber gene network could speed up discoveries ...

How can network analysis lead to a new way of studying court decisions? ...

IBM patents machine learning models for drug discovery ...

Clemson scientists receive $2.95 million to improve and simplify large-scale data analysis ...

New brain-inspired cybersecurity system detects 'bad apples' 100 times faster ...

Supercomputers reveal how cell membranes keep cancer-causing proteins turned off ...

The Cloud

IBM opens Budapest Software Lab to develop Cloud Video solutions ...

IBM first to deliver latest NVIDIA GPU accelerator on the Cloud to speed AI workloads ...

University of Wyoming uses Oracle Cloud to drive core mission of teaching, research, and service ...

Industry experts discuss advantages and risks of shifting data analytics to the Cloud ...

How can network analysis lead to a new way of studying court decisions?


Gijs started his PhD in Private Law 14 years ago. He continued working as a researcher because he enjoys the freedom to explore and discover new things that mean something to the field. For all these years, he has been acquiring experience as an empirical legal scholar, and since September 2016 he is working as a professor at Maastricht University. Photography: Elodie Burrillon / HUCOPIX.
3 Apr 2017 Amsterdam - Gijs van Dijck is a young professor of Private Law at Maastricht University. For the last six months, he has been working with Dafne van Kuppevelt, eScience Research Engineer at the eScience Center, on the project "Case Law Analytics". The aim is to develop a technology that assists the legal community in analyzing case law. Here is the story of their collaboration.

Three years ago, Gijs vam Dijck stumbled across an article where network analysis was applied in a legal context. He realized then the enormous potential of this technology for his field: it could lead a new way of studying court decisions by legal academics, lawyers, legal advisers, and law students. But Gijs van Dijck is a legal scholar, and not a computer scientist.

When he heard about the eScience Center, it seemed like the perfect way to work on this promising research. With a grant that would bring him both financial support and expertise, he could start developing his idea on a small level, with the help of an eScience Research Engineer who would develop the appropriate technology.

In May 2016, he applied for an eScience grant. Here is in essence what his project would be about: Case synthesis is the method commonly applied by legal researchers and law students when analyzing court decisions. The analysis of court decisions commonly relies on human analysis, without software or other technical aid. Consequently, case law is analyzed based on a relatively small number of cases. In contrast, the law produces numerous cases. This project aims to develop a technology that assists the legal community in analyzing case law.

A couple of months after his application, Gijs van Dijck was pleased to learn that his proposal was accepted: "The granting procedure went all very fast and smooth with the eScience Center. From the beginning, they were very positive and collaborative  -  and I think this is representative of the mentality of the whole centre: they really look for opportunities rather than for limitations."

Dafne van Kuppevelt is an eScience Research Engineer, and she started working with Gijs van Dijck in September 2016. Being a computer science expert, she knew little about law. Gijs van Dijck is legal scholar, and he knew little about data science. But step by step, they understood the practices, constraints and vocabulary of each other's field.

Gijs van Dijck stated: "We are collaborating, but from different backgrounds and with different expertises. And that's what I really like. She's there to help the field but from her independent, own way. And it's not like she's stuck in her own field; she's also interested in what we are doing and how to answer research questions that are relevant."

"This is a really nice collaboration. I really like this setup of assigning an eScience Research Engineer. And it's very efficient not only thanks to Dafne, but also thanks to all the team of eScience Research Engineers who can help her at any time, if need be. Another point that I like very much is the sustainability aspect: the eScience Center tries to build tools that others can use, too."

Dafne van Kuppevelt developed a visualization tool that now enables legal researchers to analyze a network of cases linked to each other via their citations.

The advantages are twofold: the network allows researchers to analyze a huge amount of cases in a very short amount of time, and it also enables them to discover new things that they would have difficulties to otherwise notice.

Fifteen students of Gijs van Dijck are currently working on these networks, and with only little experience in the field they can already see things that legal experts would miss. Gijs van Dijck stated: "One master student was discussing cases the other day with an expert in the field, and after running a network analysis on the data set for a few minutes, he could point out some cases that the expert had missed. It's quite amazing to see how, thanks to this tool, a student can, in some ways, outperform the expert."

Now that the front-end of the software is up and running, Dafne van Kuppevelt and Gijs van Dijck will be working on improving the back-end, by extending the visualisation tool by adding an automated search option.

But the results are already there, and Gijs van Dijck's colleagues are already amazed by the possibilities of this tool.

If Gijs van Dijck would work again with the eScience Center?

"That's for sure", he stated. "I'm really glad they're here and I hope it can continue after the end of the project in September 2017. This is exactly what I needed. And I think this is what research needs."

More information about the "Case Law Analytics" project is available at the Netherlands eScience Center website.
Source: Netherlands eScience Center

Back to Table of contents

Primeur weekly 2017-04-10

Exascale supercomputing

EUROSERVER paves the way for low-power data centres ...

Intersect360 Research to provide USCC testimony for China's Pursuit of Next Frontier Tech hearing ...

Quantum computing

'Virtual' interferometers may overcome scale issues for optical quantum computers ...

Quantum-physical model system ...

Optics advance quantum information processing ...

Focus on Europe

A glance into the ISC 2017 Research Paper Session ...

OCF announce Iceotope as liquid cooling partner for research and academic market ...

Return of the mini-supercomputer in the Netherlands: Little Green Machine II ...

Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry chooses vSMP Foundation ...

PRACE opens SHAPE 5th Call for Proposals ...

IBM invests to accelerate innovation, collaboration and fast-track health care solutions in Finland ...

73% of academics say access to research data helps them in their work; 34% do not publish their data ...

Middleware

DDN Lustre powers University of Edinburgh accelerated genomics research ...

Hardware

Supercomputer growth drives record HPC revenue in 2016, Hyperion Research reports ...

Canada's most powerful academic supercomputer will launch at Simon Fraser University ...

Silicon Mechanics Announces Recipient of 6th Annual Research Cluster Grant ...

U.S. businesses risk falling behind as lead in global semiconductor industry threatened ...

Fujitsu and Oracle launch Fujitsu SPARC M12 servers with world's fastest per-core performance ...

IBM Researchers advance the understanding of chip reliability at IEEE International Reliability Physics Symposium ...

Applications

Artificial intelligence: Bosch and University of Amsterdam to cooperate closely ...

Cyber gene network could speed up discoveries ...

How can network analysis lead to a new way of studying court decisions? ...

IBM patents machine learning models for drug discovery ...

Clemson scientists receive $2.95 million to improve and simplify large-scale data analysis ...

New brain-inspired cybersecurity system detects 'bad apples' 100 times faster ...

Supercomputers reveal how cell membranes keep cancer-causing proteins turned off ...

The Cloud

IBM opens Budapest Software Lab to develop Cloud Video solutions ...

IBM first to deliver latest NVIDIA GPU accelerator on the Cloud to speed AI workloads ...

University of Wyoming uses Oracle Cloud to drive core mission of teaching, research, and service ...

Industry experts discuss advantages and risks of shifting data analytics to the Cloud ...