Turns out that ELS skill sets map nicely onto a new trend (and growth area) in the legal market: Legal analytics. Part three (of three) in a series of posts at Above The Law briefly summarizes the emerging trend (here).
Every once in a while it is useful to remind folks about truly extraordinary (and, in this instance, free) resources that can assist those engaged in empirical legal scholarship. One such resource is UCLA's Institute for Digital Research and Education ("idre"). Among its numerous assets includes on-line tutorials (and associated resources) for those beginning with and somewhat already deeper into SPSS, SAS, R, and Stata (as well as other major statistical programs). Well worth a look, especially for those in need of a break from grading.
Jim Greiner (Harvard), a leader in crafting randomized control trials, has secured a foundation grant to initiate a start-up effort that he's calling the "Access To Justice Lab." Jim is now at the stage where's he's looking to hire 2.5 FTEs, described below.
"The Access to Justice Lab is a startup effort, initially supported by the Laura and John Arnold Foundation with sufficient funds for three years, headed by Jim Greiner at Harvard Law School. The Lab will produce randomized control trials (“RCTs”) directly involving courts and lawyers, particularly in the areas of access to justice and court administration (including agency adjudication). It will also combat the legal profession’s current hostility to RCTs through short courses, publications, presentations, and other methods. The Lab is hiring a Research Director, a Research Associate (Field), and a half-time Research Associate (Data). Lab personnel will be trained to, and expected to, produce their own interventions and RCTs. After sufficient time, Lab personal will be invited to create their own self-sustaining research agendas at other institutions (including legal academia)."
Those interested should contact Jim Greiner at: jgreiner(at)law.harvard.edu, directly, for further information.
A new faculty-edited, peer-reviewed journal targets empirical and theoretical work at the intersection of law, finance, and accounting. The Journal of Law, Finance and Accounting ("JLFA") publishes research examining how "law and regulation affect the structure, governance, performance, and function of firms, markets, and institutions that comprise the financial system, as well as research that addresses the different ways capital is raised and the links between financial markets and the real economy." The journal's inaugural issue (1:1, 2016) can be found here.
For empirical work focusing on the USSC, the Spaeth dataset continues to dominate. And access to the Spaeth dataset continues to dramatically improve. The most recent development involves the release of the Legacy Database, which includes "ready-to-use" data covering 1791-2014 (here; click here for a general description of the various data sets). An invaluable resource.
Now, evidently, biomedical research is beginning to confront replication problems of their own (click here and here for discussions). One factor that likely distinguishes biomedical research involves the magnitude of financial incentives and their influence.
Researchers using judge-level data will benefit from a new on-line judicial database created by the Free Law Project. Funded in part by NSF and foundation grants, and in conjunction with Elliot Ash (Princeton) and Bentley MacLeod (Columbia), the database currently includes biographical information on almost 8,500 federal and state judges. For more information, see the database's announcement (here) and the judge search engine (here).