Sunday, March 25, 2007

Lawyerly links ...

  • Jeffrey Rosen on the impact of neuroscience on law: "To suggest that criminals could be excused because their brains made them do it seems to imply that anyone whose brain isn’t functioning properly could be absolved of responsibility. But should judges and juries really be in the business of defining the normal or properly working brain? And since all behavior is caused by our brains, wouldn’t this mean all behavior could potentially be excused?" [Link via n! in a comment to this post].
  • Matthew Hutson on the 'science' of jury selection: "Jury consulting has become a big business over the past three decades. Hundreds of firms now rake in several hundred million dollars a year. ... Despite all the money and research poured into predicting and shaping jury decisions, to a large degree the state of the art remains just that: art." [Link via the excellent Situationist Blog].
  • Talking about lucrative 'professions' that derive their sustenance from lawsuits, you have to read about Berkeley economist David Teece, who has built a consultancy firm around his expertise in being an expert witness in business litigation. "LECG has been a fast-growing company for most of its existence and has 32 offices in 10 countries. But it stumbled last year, when it earned $21.5 million on revenue of $354 million." [Link via Alex Thomas].


  1. Anonymous said...

    Abi: thanks!

    Before I forget, keep a watch out for this book about psychology and the courtroom:

    Borgida, E., & Fiske, S. T. (Eds.) (in press). Psychological science in the courtroom: Beyond common knowledge. London: Blackwell.

    Its not out yet, but its fascinating.


  2. Tabula Rasa said...

    wow. top reco. thanks!

  3. Anonymous said...

    TR: yeah, we're doing it in class right now. Susan is amazing, what can I say! And the book (we're doing a chapter each week) is fascinating. So far we've covered eyewitness lineups, false memories /false confessions, the need for affirmative action (implicit discrimination) and other really cool stuff.

    abi, there I go blogjacking again. One of these days, should start my own blog..


  4. gaddeswarup said...

    Meanwhile, you can post in some other blog like mine. I started the blog mainly to keep track of things that I am reading and may want to come back to. There is no specific aim.
    Apologies to Abi.