Procedural Law and Economics (Edward Elgar), 2012

U of Texas Law, Law and Econ Research Paper No. 208

23 Pages Posted: 17 May 2011 Last revised: 22 Mar 2012

See all articles by Robert G. Bone

Robert G. Bone

University of Texas School of Law

Date Written: May 17, 2011


This essay on discovery will be a chapter in the Procedural Law and Economics volume forthcoming from Edward Elgar. It reviews the law-and-economics literature on discovery, current as of 2008 (when I wrote the chapter). It first situates discovery in the broader context of incentives to disclose information voluntarily. It then reviews the social benefits of discovery, including benefits for settlement, trial outcomes, filing incentives, and primary activity incentives. The essay follows with a review of the social costs of discovery, including party incentives to conduct excessive and abusive discovery. The chapter ends with a brief review of three discovery reforms: mandatory disclosure, discovery limits, and cost-shifting.

Keywords: discovery, economics of litigation

JEL Classification: K0, K40, K41

Suggested Citation

Bone, Robert G., Discovery (May 17, 2011). Procedural Law and Economics (Edward Elgar), 2012, U of Texas Law, Law and Econ Research Paper No. 208, Available at SSRN:

Robert G. Bone (Contact Author)

University of Texas School of Law ( email )

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