Concerned that scholars in various disciplines were talking past each other and that policy debates concerning judicial independence were impoverished, the editors convened a conference of scholars from the disciplines of law, political science, history, economics and sociology. Judicial Independence at the Crossroads: An Interdisciplinary Approach is a collection of essays reflecting the disciplinary perspectives of the authors and the shared understanding that emerged from the conference.
Chapter 6: Judicial Independence: How Can You Tell It When You See It? And, Who Cares?
Judicial Independence: How Can You Tell It When You See It? And, Who Cares?
Throughout this volume, two clusters of questions arise repeatedly:
- Is “judicial independence” such an ambiguous, amorphous, or confused concept that it is useless analytically? Or does it actually mean something? If so, what?
- If “judicial independence” refers to something real, is it actually good for anything? As Lewis Kornhauser stresses in his contribution to this volume, judicial independence is not an end in itself. It is purely instrumental, a means to an end. But, what end or ends? And, how well does judicial independence serve those ends?
In this brief chapter, I sketch some answers to these questions, ...