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From Pyramids to Stories: Cognitive Reconstruction of Local Government Authority

34 Pages Posted: 11 Sep 2012  

John Martinez

University of Utah - S.J. Quinney College of Law

Date Written: September 11, 2012

Abstract

This article describes a cognitive science approach to law, uses it to critically evaluate conventional "pyramid" legal analysis of local government authority, and suggests stories as alternative models for defining such authority. The article suggests that stories better reveal what is at stake in regard to local government authority and thus helps us to arrive at better solutions. The article illustrates the storytelling analytical approach in three situations: a local government's condemnation of private property for resale to a private developer, the delegation of land use control authority to neighborhood groups, and local government attempts to zone out nontraditional families.

Keywords: local government law, cognitive science, chaos theory, eminent domain, takings, zoning, nontraditional families

JEL Classification: B30, D70, D71, D73, D74, D78, D81, D83, G30, G38, G39, H10, H11, H19, H80, H82, H89, K10, K11, K19

Suggested Citation

Martinez, John, From Pyramids to Stories: Cognitive Reconstruction of Local Government Authority (September 11, 2012). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2144941 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2144941

John Martinez (Contact Author)

University of Utah - S.J. Quinney College of Law ( email )

383 S. University Street
Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0730
United States

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