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The (Economic) Effects of Lay Participation in Courts - A Cross-Country Analysis

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  • Stefan Voigt

    () (Philipps-University Marburg)

Abstract

Legal philosophers like Montesquieu, Hegel and Tocqueville have argued that lay participation in judicial decision-making would have benefits reaching far beyond the realm of the legal system narrowly understood. From an economic point of view, lay participation in judicial decision-making can be interpreted as a renunciation of an additional division of labor, which is expected to cause foregone benefits in terms of the costs as well as the quality of judicial decision-making. In order to be justified, these foregone benefits need to be overcompensated by other – actually realized – benefits of at least the same magnitude. This paper discusses pros and cons of lay participation, presents a new database and tests some of the theoretically derived hypotheses empirically. The effects of lay participation on the judicial system, a number of governance variables but also on economic performance indicators are rather modest. A proxy representing historic experiences with any kind of lay participation is the single most robust variable.

Suggested Citation

  • Stefan Voigt, 2008. "The (Economic) Effects of Lay Participation in Courts - A Cross-Country Analysis," MAGKS Papers on Economics 200820, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
  • Handle: RePEc:mar:magkse:200820
    as

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    File URL: http://www.uni-marburg.de/fb02/makro/forschung/magkspapers/20-2008_voigt.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2008
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    Cited by:

    1. Yamamura, Eiji, 2009. "What Discourages Participation in the Lay Judge System (Saiban’in Seido) of Japan? Interaction between the Secrecy Requirement and Social Networks," MPRA Paper 17197, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Yamamura, Eiji, 2009. "What discourages participation in the lay judge system (Saiban'in seido) of Japan? : an interaction effect between the secrecy requirement and social network," MPRA Paper 15920, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Economic Effects of Legal Systems; Judicial Decision-Making; Trial by Jury; Jurors; Lay Assessors; Constitutional Economics; Civil Society; Quality of Governance; History of Thought;

    JEL classification:

    • B15 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought through 1925 - - - Historical; Institutional; Evolutionary
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • H73 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Interjurisdictional Differentials and Their Effects
    • K41 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Litigation Process
    • P51 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems - - - Comparative Analysis of Economic Systems

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