The Judicial Signaling Game: How Judges Shape their Dockets
Northwestern University - School of Law
Supreme Court Economic Review, 2006
Northwestern Law & Econ Research Paper No. 05-09
Contrary to traditional wisdom, judges are not passive receivers of their agendas. Instead, many judges attempt to shape their dockets by encouraging potential litigants to bring particular cases. This encouragement takes the form of judges signaling their own positions on an issue as well as their colleagues' expected support. This process is modeled as a signaling game, with both separating and pooling equilibria resulting. The existence of pooling equilibria is of particular interest, as it indicates some judges misrepresent the chances of success of a case in order to induce desired legislation.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 54
Keywords: Courts, information asymmetry, agenda setting, certiorari, litigation
JEL Classification: C72, D81, D82, K41Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: April 6, 2005
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