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

  • Stefan Voigt

    ()

    (Philipps-University Marburg)

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.

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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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Paper provided by Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung) in its series MAGKS Papers on Economics with number 200820.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: Forthcoming in
Handle: RePEc:mar:magkse:200820
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Phone: 06421/28-1722
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Web page: http://www.uni-marburg.de/fb02/
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  1. Feld, Lars P. & Voigt, Stefan, 2003. "Economic growth and judicial independence: cross-country evidence using a new set of indicators," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 497-527, September.
  2. Rafael LaPorta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert Vishny, . "The Quality of Government," Working Paper 19452, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  3. Matthias Benz & Alois Stutzer:, . "Are Voters Better Informed When They Have a Larger Say in Politics? Evidence for the European Union and Switzerland," IEW - Working Papers 119, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  4. Bruno S. Frey & Matthias Benz & Alois Stutzer, 2003. "Introducing Procedural Utility: Not only What, but also How Matters," CREMA Working Paper Series 2003-02, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
  5. Stefan Voigt, 2008. "The economic effects of judicial accountability: cross-country evidence," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 25(2), pages 95-123, April.
  6. Mauro, Paolo, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712, August.
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