Ideology and Exceptionalism in Intellectual Property: An Empirical Study

95 Pages Posted: 29 Apr 2008 Last revised: 21 Apr 2010

Matthew Sag

Loyola University Chicago School of Law

Tonja Jacobi

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law

Maxim Sytch

University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business

Date Written: January 12, 2009

Abstract

This article investigates the relationship between ideology and judicial decision-making in the context of intellectual property. Using data drawn from Supreme Court intellectual property cases decided in between 1954 and 2006, we show that ideology is a significant determinant of cases involving intellectual property rights: the more conservative a judge is, the more likely he or she is to vote in favor of an intellectual property claim. However, our analysis also shows that there are significant differences between intellectual property and other areas of the law with respect to the effect of ideology. This analysis has important implications for the study of intellectual property. It also contributes to the broader judicial ideology literature by demonstrating the effect of ideology in economic cases.

Keywords: Intellectual Property, Ideology, Politics, Attitudinal model, Empirical

JEL Classification: K00

Suggested Citation

Sag, Matthew and Jacobi, Tonja and Sytch, Maxim, Ideology and Exceptionalism in Intellectual Property: An Empirical Study (January 12, 2009). California Law Review, Vol. 97, p. 801, 2009; The DePaul University College of Law, Technology, Law & Culture Research Series Paper No. 09-009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1125360

Matthew Sag (Contact Author)

Loyola University Chicago School of Law ( email )

25 E. Pearson
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

Tonja Jacobi

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law ( email )

375 E. Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

Maxim Sytch

University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business ( email )

701 Tappan Street
Ann Arbor, MI MI 48109
United States

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