I wish to recommend the following article:
George, Tracey E. and Chris Guthrie. "The Threes": Re-imagining Supreme Court Decisionmaking, 61 Vand. L. Rev.
Article III is odd. In contrast to Articles I and II, which specify in some detail how the legislative and executive branches are to be assembled, Article III says virtually nothing about the institutional design of the Supreme Court.
Consistent with this Constitutional silence, the Court's look, shape, and behavior have adapted to changed circumstances. For example, the Court's membership has changed substantially. Initially, six Justices sat on the Court; in time, the Court grew to ten and shrank to seven. Only in 1869 did it settle at nine. Likewise, the Court's jurisdiction has changed, first expanding, then contracting, and then shifting. The Court's caseload, which is now almost entirely discretionary, was once almost entirely mandatory. And the Court has altered its courtroom practices in a variety of ways; for instance, the Court once allowed advocates, who rarely submitted briefs, to present oral arguments that lasted for days!
These examples tell us something important about the past, present, and future of the Supreme Court. The current Court may consist of nine members who decide a small number of discretionary appeals en banc, but this was not always so, nor need it be so in the future. So, in light of the many important roles the Court plays in our constitutional democracy, how should it conduct its affairs?
this Essay - the first in a series of essays designed to re-imagine the
Supreme Court - we argue that Congress should authorize the Court to
adopt, in whole or part, panel decisionmaking....