Judicial Decisionmaking: A Behavioral Perspective

The Oxford Handbook of Behavioral Economics and the Law (Eyal Zamir & Doron Teichman eds., 2014 Forthcoming)

41 Pages Posted: 17 Dec 2013

See all articles by Doron Teichman

Doron Teichman

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Faculty of Law

Eyal Zamir

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Faculty of Law

Date Written: December 16, 2013

Abstract

This chapter, forthcoming in the Oxford Handbook of Behavioral Economics and the Law, critically reviews the behavioral literature on judicial decisionmaking. Among other things, it presents general theories of judicial decisionmaking, such as the story model and coherence-based reasoning. It also examines the susceptibility of judicial decisionmaking to various well-known cognitive biases, including the compromise and contrast effects, the hindsight bias, the omission bias, and anchoring. The chapter explores factfinders’ reluctance to impose liability based on certain types of evidence. It further surveys the contribution of behavioral studies to better understanding judicial prejudice. Special attention is given to judicial application of legal norms to facts and the effect of the choice between rules and standards on the predictability of judgments. Finally, the chapter provides an overview of two fundamental questions in the behavioral analysis of judicial decisionmaking: group decisionmaking and judges’ versus laypersons’ decisionmaking.

Keywords: judicial decisionmaking; behavioral economics; story model; compromise effect; contrast effect; hindsight bias; omission bias; anchoring; circumstantial evidence; statistical evidence; inadmissible evidence; rules and standards; group decisionmaking

JEL Classification: A12, D70, D74, D78, K40, K41

Suggested Citation

Teichman, Doron and Zamir, Eyal, Judicial Decisionmaking: A Behavioral Perspective (December 16, 2013). The Oxford Handbook of Behavioral Economics and the Law (Eyal Zamir & Doron Teichman eds., 2014 Forthcoming), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2366678

Doron Teichman

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Faculty of Law ( email )

Mount Scopus
Mount Scopus, IL 91905
Israel

Eyal Zamir (Contact Author)

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Faculty of Law ( email )

Mount Scopus
Mount Scopus, IL 91905
Israel
+972 2 582 3845 (Phone)
+972 2 582 9002 (Fax)

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