What We Know and What We Should Know About American Trial Trends
15 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2006
This brief essay, which began as a comment on "A World Without Trials?", Marc Galanter's 2005 Annual Distinguished Alternative Dispute Resolution Lecture at the University of Missouri at Columbia, first summarizes recently acquired knowledge about American trial trends - in particular, the chief features we know about the shrinking civil trial docket in federal district courts. Next, it proposes four areas of future investigation necessary to understand the contours of the trend and to assess its causes. Then, I bring together the causal hypotheses that have already been proposed, none of which has yet been securely tested. Finally, in an appended bibliography, I list data sources, reports, and scholarly analyses that will be useful to those doing future work.
Keywords: vanishing trial, litigation, empirical, trials
JEL Classification: K41
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation