This contribution is meant to understand the (widening?) gap between members of the Dutch judiciary system on the one hand and an important part of the population on the other. To do so I will ask the following questions:
1. What kind of indicators suggests that there is a gap between the public and the law?
2. What can we learn from recent studies in this field?
3. What is the role of social and cognitive dimensions in this respect?
4. Who will be in trouble by such a gap?
5. In how far is it possible to bridge this gap?
Of course I am fully aware of the fact that these questions are also applicable to other countries and perhaps to other times. For empirical reasons, however, I will restrict myself to the Dutch situation, hoping that the international community of scientists is interested in a few findings and ideas that are presented in this article.