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Reputation, Information and the Organization of the Judiciary

Journal of Comparative Law, Forthcoming

U of Chicago Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 503

38 Pages Posted: 21 Dec 2009  

Nuno M. Garoupa

Texas A&M University School of Law; Catholic University of Portugal (UCP) - Católica Global School of Law

Tom Ginsburg

University of Chicago Law School

Date Written: December 15, 2009

Abstract

The reputation of the judiciary, individually or as a whole, determines its status in any given society and its ability to compete effectively for resources. We analyze reputation and make three claims. First, reputation matters. Virtually every theory of judicial power is dependent, ultimately, on perceptions of judges, who famously lack the purse or the sword. Our second claim is that reputation can be divided into individual and collective components. Individual reputation provides information about individual performance whereas collective reputation provides information about the quality of the judiciary in general. We use the economics of team production to analyze the relationship between individual and collective reputation. Third, different legal systems configure institutions in different ways in order to address the problem of information and reputation. This is what we refer to as the industrial organization of the judiciary. The classical understandings of the common law and civil law judiciaries can be seen as sets of linked institutions that are mutually supportive in addressing the problem of information and reputation.

Suggested Citation

Garoupa, Nuno M. and Ginsburg, Tom, Reputation, Information and the Organization of the Judiciary (December 15, 2009). Journal of Comparative Law, Forthcoming; U of Chicago Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 503. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1523954

Nuno M. Garoupa

Texas A&M University School of Law ( email )

1515 Commerce St.
Fort Worth, TX 76102
United States

Catholic University of Portugal (UCP) - Católica Global School of Law ( email )

Lisboa
Portugal

Tom Ginsburg (Contact Author)

University of Chicago Law School ( email )

1111 E. 60th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

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