An Introduction to Empirical Legal Research

Paperback | September 14, 2014

byLee Epstein, Andrew D. Martin

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Is the death penalty a more effective deterrent than lengthy prison sentences? Does a judge's gender influence their decisions? Do independent judiciaries promote economic freedom? Answering such questions requires empirical evidence, and arguments based on empirical research have become aneveryday part of legal practice, scholarship, and teaching. In litigation judges are confronted with empirical evidence in cases ranging from bankruptcy and taxation to criminal law and environmental infringement. In academia researchers are increasingly turning to sophisticated empirical methods toassess and challenge fundamental assumptions about the law.As empirical methods impact on traditional legal scholarship and practice, new forms of education are needed for today's lawyers. All lawyers asked to present or assess empirical arguments need to understand the fundamental principles of social science methodology that underpin sound empiricalresearch. An Introduction to Empirical Legal Research introduces that methodology in a legal context, explaining how empirical analysis can inform legal arguments; how lawyers can set about framing empirical questions, conducting empirical research, analysing data, and presenting or evaluating theresults. The fundamentals of understanding quantitative and qualitative data, statistical models, and the structure of empirical arguments are explained in a way accessible to lawyers with or without formal training in statistics.Written by two of the world's leading experts in empirical legal analysis, drawing on years of experience in training lawyers in empirical methods, An Introduction to Empirical Legal Research will be an invaluable primer for all students, academics, or practising lawyers coming to empirical research- whether they are embarking themselves on an empirical research project, or engaging with empirical arguments in their field of study, research, or practice.

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Is the death penalty a more effective deterrent than lengthy prison sentences? Does a judge's gender influence their decisions? Do independent judiciaries promote economic freedom? Answering such questions requires empirical evidence, and arguments based on empirical research have become aneveryday part of legal practice, scholarship, ...

Lee Epstein is the Provost Professor of Law and Political Science and the Rader Family Trustee Chair in Law at the University of Southern California. She has previously held posts at Northwestern University and Washington University, St Louis. Professor Epstein has received twelve grants from the National Science Foundation for her wor...
Format:PaperbackDimensions:304 pagesPublished:September 14, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199669066

ISBN - 13:9780199669066

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Table of Contents

1. Some PreliminariesPart I: Designing Research2. Questions, Theories, Observable Implications3. MeasurementPart II: Collecting and Coding Data4. Collecting Data5. Coding DataPart III: Analyzing Data6. Summarizing Data7. Statistical Interference8. Regression Analysis: The Basics9. Multiple Regression Analysis and Related MethodsPart IV: Communicating Data and Results10. General Principles for Communicating and Visualizing Data11. Strategies for Presenting Data and Statistical Results12. Concluding RemarksAppendix A: Supplementary Materials