Encyclopedia of Law and Economics

2019 Edition
| Editors: Alain Marciano, Giovanni Battista Ramello

Empirical Analysis of Judicial Decisions

  • Luciana YeungEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-7753-2_692



Evidence shows that, contrary to what believed traditional legal theorists, judges when making decisions are not merely making a pure exercise of interpretation of the law. They are influenced by factors such as panel composition, material and nonmaterial benefits, pressure groups, etc., and may follow distinct trends. This chapter presents some models that explain judicial behavior or judicial decisions. Recent (and not so recent) empirical literature has been providing a rich debate in this still recent discussion.

Introduction: Why Care? Judicial Outcomes and Economic Performance

If judges have a substantial amount of discretion in deciding cases, then it is important to know the motives and the value systems which influence their exercise of discretion. (C. Hermann Pritchett 1968)

Coase (1960) taught us that courts and court outcomes – i.e., judicial decisions – impact the...

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Insper Institute of Education and ResearchSão PauloBrazil