Judging Women

29 Pages Posted: 4 Aug 2011

See all articles by Stephen J. Choi

Stephen J. Choi

New York University School of Law

Mitu Gulati

University of Virginia School of Law

Mirya R. Holman

Tulane University - Department of Political Science

Eric A. Posner

University of Chicago - Law School

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: September 2011

Abstract

Justice Sonia Sotomayor's assertion that female judges might be better than male judges has generated accusations of sexism and potential bias. An equally controversial claim is that male judges are better than female judges because the latter have benefited from affirmative action. These claims are susceptible to empirical analysis. Using a data set of all the state high court judges in 1998–2000, we estimate three measures of judicial output: opinion production, outside state citations, and co‐partisan disagreements. For many of our tests, we fail to find significant gender effects on judicial performance. Where we do find significant gender effects for our state high court judges, female judges perform better than male judges. An analysis of data from the U.S. Court of Appeals and the federal district courts produces roughly similar findings.

Suggested Citation

Choi, Stephen J. and Gulati, Mitu and Holman, Mirya R. and Posner, Eric A., Judging Women (September 2011). Journal of Empirical Legal Studies, Vol. 8, Issue 3, pp. 504-532, 2011, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1904791 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1740-1461.2011.01218.x

Stephen J. Choi (Contact Author)

New York University School of Law ( email )

40 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States

Mitu Gulati

University of Virginia School of Law ( email )

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States

Mirya R. Holman

Tulane University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Tulane University
316 Norman Mayer Building
New Orleans, LA 70118
United States

Eric A. Posner

University of Chicago - Law School ( email )

1111 E. 60th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-0425 (Phone)
773-702-0730 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.uchicago.edu/faculty/posner-e/

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