In response to the Federal Government’s recommendations to the current COVID-19 situation, the Council of Chief Judges has postponed the 2020 District & County Court Judges Australia and New Zealand Conference to the 7 – 9 April 2021.

Further updates will be provided in the coming months and at this time we would like to assure you that the conference organising committee has put together a wonderful conference program and accompanying partners program focusing on challenges and opportunities facing the courts of the future.

We thank you for your understanding during this very difficult time.

2020 Conference Planning Committee

Conference Themes

  • The future of law – where the legal world is heading
  • New and emerging technologies and their applications in contemporary law enforcement and justice:
    • 3D printing technologies with specific reference to firearms;
    • Transnational policing with reference to issues of jurisdiction and extraterritoriality and policing of cryptomarkets in the dark web;
    • Developments in ICTs and Australian law enforcement
    • Biometrics, specifically facial recognition
  • Innovation in the detection of crime and innovation in law enforcement, including technical applications to detect high end fraud, monitoring of offenders and more.
  • Innovation in commercial matters: a look at new technologies such as blockchain and smart contracts; artificial intelligence and dispute resolution.
  • Multi-jurisdictional perspective of innovations enhancing efficiency in the courtroom– technological and procedural innovations, plus some of the downsides
  • Confidentiality in a digital world – protecting your digital footprint and ensuring the integrity of your computerised documents and communications
  • Human Rights & Technology
  • Developments in judicial education through sentencing packages; micro learning; intuitive/predictive software for decision modelling and more.

Invited Speakers

  • The Honourable Thomas Bathurst AC, Chief Justice of NSW
  • Mr Philippe Doyle Gray, Author, The pillars of digital security: How to ethically use technology in legal practice, and barrister, New South Wales
  • Her Honour Judge Judith Gibson, District Court of NSW
  • The Honourable Chris Kourakis, Chief Justice of South Australia
  • Dr Monique Mann, Senior Lecturer in Criminology and member of the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation, Deakin University
  • Mr Michael Phelan, Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission and Director of the Australian Institute of Criminology
  • The Honourable Justice Derek Price AM, Chief Judge, District Court of NSW
  • Dr Philippa Ryan, Senior Lecturer, Director of the ANU LLM program, ANU College of Law
  • Dame Helen Winkelman, Chief Justice of New Zealand
  • Mr Edward Santow, Human Rights Commissioner, Australian Human Rights Commission
  • Mr Murali Sagi, Deputy Chief Executive, Judicial Commission of NSW
  • Professor Tania Sourdin, Head of School & Dean, Newcastle Law School
  • His Honour Judge Michael Gething, District Court of Western Australia
  • His Honour Judge Peter Callinicos, District Court of New Zealand
  • Her Honour Judge Julie McIntyre, District Court of South Australia
  • Her Honour Judge Samantha Marks, County Court of Victoria
  • His Honour Judge Dean Morzone QC, District Court of Queensland

Conference Social Program

Welcome Reception

The welcome cocktail function will be held in the stylish Heritage Atrium at the Hyatt Regency on Thursday 8th April from 1730 – 1900.

Conference Dinner

Held at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, one of the most beautiful art museums in the world, the dinner promises to be stylish and enjoyable evening.  Arrival drinks served in the Modern Australian galleries – home to works from the 20th and 21st century Australian collection, including artists such as Nolan and Drysdale will be followed by a three course dinner with fine wines included.

Accompanying Partners Program

A range of optional activities will be available for partners to enjoy whilst delegates are in session.


Registrations will open towards the end of September 2020

Early Bird Registration – $1,325 

Standard Registration – $1,425 

Early Bird Registration Closes 3 February 2021.
Prices include GST

Conference Planning Committee

  • Her Honour Judge Jane Culver, District Court of NSW (Chair)
  • Her Honour Judge Penny Hock, District Court of NSW
  • Judicial Registrar James Howard, District Court of NSW
  • Ms Lisa Freeman, Associate to Justice D Price AM, Chief Judge, District Court of New South Wales
  • Ms Una Doyle, Director, Education Judicial Commission of NSW


Hyatt Regency Sydney
161 Sussex Street
Sydney 2000

Located adjacent to Darling Harbour in Sydney’s (CBD), this hotel boasts stunning views of Darling Harbour or the surrounding Central Business District from spacious guestrooms.

The Hyatt Regency Sydney is the city’s largest hotel and is within walking distance to iconic theatres, museums, galleries and luxury shopping precincts including Pitt Street Mall, Queen Victoria Building etc.

Special discounted rates have been negotiated for conference delegates and will be available when registration opens in May.