I'm pleased to announce that Sara Benesh has agreed to become a permanent Editor of the Empirical Legal Studies Blog. As a Guest Blogger, Sara discussed the normative implications of empirical work, how to operationalize "the law", and the Supreme Court database.
Sara is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She received her PhD in 1999 from Michigan State University, held a tenure-track position at the University of New Orleans for two years, and joined the faculty at UWM in 2001. Her research focuses on the relationship between the Supreme Court and the U.S. Courts of Appeals, and she is the author of “The U.S. Court of Appeals and the Law of Confessions: Perspectives on the Hierarchy of Justice” (LFB Scholarly) and co-author of “The Supreme in the American Legal System” (with Jeffrey Segal and Harold Spaeth, Cambridge University Press). She is also Co-PI (with Harold Spaeth) on the National Science Foundation-funded “Justice-Centered Databases,” a revision to the celebrated Spaeth Databases. Sara teaches courses in civil rights and civil liberties, judicial behavior, and political methodology at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.