Judging Judges: The Effect of Courtroom Ceremony on Participant Evaluation of Process Fairness-Related Factors
25 Pages Posted: 15 May 2012
Date Written: 2012
The effect of judicial ceremony on participant evaluation of the adjudicatory process has not previously been explored empirically. Using survey results obtained from student participants in a moot oral argument in their first year at the New York University School of Law, we present an empirical investigation of the effects of judicial robes and moot court venue (courtroom, conference room, or moot court room) on student advocate perceptions of judicial behavior and case outcome. We examine two hypotheses. One, that ceremony affects participant evaluation of judicial behavior as measured by well-established elements of perceived procedural fairness. Two, that the ceremony effect will be positive, i.e., will enhance participant evaluation of fairness-related criteria. Our preliminary results show strong support for both hypotheses.
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