For those interested (or planning to attend) the American Psychology-Law Society annual conference later this month in Seattle, information on the conference program (here) and pre-conference workshops (here) is now available.
Organized by Yun-chien Chang (Academia Sinica), CELSA, scheduled for June 13 - 15, 2017, at Academia Sinica in Taipei, Taiwan, will include up to seven panels with up to 5 parallel sessions. One of the parallel sessions will be reserved for papers using Asian data. The paper submission deadline has been extended until: 24 February 2017, 11:59pm ET.
An overview of the conference follows: "Empirical legal studies are well established in the United States and are now part of the academic mainstream. In Asia, as compared to other "law and" disciplines, empirical legal studies appear to rise faster and spread wider. For legal empiricists, it is not enough. Both legal academia and policy-makers would benefit from a deeper understanding of the law in action as well as behaviors of courts, legislators, regulated parties, etc. Hosted by Academia Sinica in Taiwan and sponsored by the Society for Empirical Legal Studies (SELS), the first Conference on Empirical Legal Studies in Asia (CELSA) brings together academics from law and other fields who embrace the empirical turn and seek to develop empirical accounts of law and legal institutions in Asia."
For information on how to submit a paper(s), click here. Presenters are permitted to submit--and present--up to two (2) papers at CELSA.
Northwestern and Duke Universities will hold their 8th annual week-long workshop on Research Design for Causal Inference, at Northwestern University from June 19-23, 2017. Organized by Bernie Black (Northwestern) and Mat McCubbins (Duke), the workshop features an outstanding faculty and is an excellent and efficient way to become acquainted with contemporary approaches for making causal inferences from various kinds of observational and experimental data. Details and registration information can be found here. A brief overview follows:
"Research design for causal inference is at the heart of a 'credibility revolution' in empirical research. We will cover the design of true randomized experiments and contrast them to natural or quasi experiments and to pure observational studies, where part of the sample is treated in some way, the remainder is a control group, but the researcher controls neither the assignment of cases to treatment and control groups nor administration of the treatment. We will assess the causal inferences one can draw from a research design, threats to valid inference, and research designs that can mitigate those threats."
Monday, June 19 (Don Rubin): Introduction to Modern Methods for Causal Inference Tuesday, June 20 (Alberto Abadie): Designs for “Pure” Observational Studies Wednesday, June 21 (Alberto Abadie): Instrumental variable methods Thursday, June 22 (Jens Hainmueller): Panel Data and Difference-in-Differences Friday morning, June 23 (Jens Hainmueller): Regression Discontinuity Friday afternoon: Feedback on your own research
It is with particular pleasure and pride that I note the call for papers for CELS 2017, hosted by Cornell Law School. Details follow.
Paper Submission Deadline: June 23, 2017 (midnight, Eastern Time).
Cornell Law School and the Society for Empirical Legal Studies (SELS) are pleased to announce the 12th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies (CELS) on October 13-14, 2017, in Ithaca, New York.
CELS is a highly regarded interdisciplinary gathering that draws researchers from across the United States and the world, bringing together scholars in law, economics, political science, psychology, policy analysis, and other fields who are interested in the empirical analysis of law and legal institutions. Papers are selected through a peer review process and discussion at the conference includes assigned commentators and audience questions.
CELS will consider empirical papers spanning all areas of empirical legal studies. Authors are encouraged to submit works-in-progress; however, submissions should be completed drafts that include principal results. Submitted papers must be unpublished (and expected to be unpublished at the time of the conference). If accepted, authors will have an opportunity to submit a revised draft prior to the conference for presentation and discussion. Please note that accepted papers will be made available to all conference participants.
To submit a paper, please go to the CELS 2017 Conference page on SSRN (here).
(Do not use the regular SSRN submission site.)
For more information about CELS 2017 please visit the conference website (here).
In a fitting tribute to a leading appeals court scholar, the good folks at the Univ. of South Carolina have reorganized (and renamed) a helpful website in honor of their colleague, Don Songer. "The primary mission of the The Songer Project is to provide a comprehensive access point to the most recent and cutting-edge research on law and judicial politics. At this website, individuals interested in law and judicial politics can download electronic datasets of court cases, obtain smaller datasets or measures of judicially relevant phenomena, read various working papers on important topics, and link to other websites containing law and judicial politics information."
Well worth a visit, particularly for those seeking USCA datasets (click here).
A call for papers (excerpted below) for a 2017 conference, hosted by Academica Sinica in Taiwan and co-sponsored by the Society for Empirical Legal Studies (SELS), further evidences empirical legal studies' widening global footprint and reach. KC Huang (a JELS international adviser) helped found Academia Sinica's Empirical Legal Studies Center. Now that KC is a member of Taiwan's Congress, Yun-chien Chang directs the Center and organizes CELSA. The conference's host, Academia Sinica, has already organized three international conferences and multiple ELS workshops, making Taipei a critical hub of ELS activity in East Asia.
"The first Conference on Empirical Legal Studies in Asia (CELSA) brings together, in Asia, researchers from law and other fields who seek to develop empirical accounts of law and legal institutions.
Papers are selected through a rigorous peer review process. CELSA will consider empirical papers across all areas of law. Quantitative data analysis is preferred. Only submissions in English are considered. While authors are strongly encouraged to submit works-in-progress, submissions should be completed drafts that present main findings. Submitted papers must be unpublished (and expected to be unpublished at the time of the conference). If accepted, authors will have an opportunity to submit a revised draft prior to the conference. Each paper will be assigned a discussant and authors of accepted papers are expected to be willing to act as discussants of another paper."
CELSA is set for June 13-15, 2017 (Tues.-Thurs.) at Taiwan's Academica Sinica.
Call for papers submission deadline: 15 February 2017.
Click here for more submission and conference information; please direct specific questions to Prof. Yun-chien Chang, at: email@example.com
A while back, we posted information on a proposed idea at Harvard Law School that was seeking to "staff-up" (here). I am delighted to report that the "idea" has now launched as an up-and-running program--Harvard Law School's Access to Justice Lab. According to Research Director Chris Griffin, the Lab, affiliated with HLS's Center on the Legal Profession, is a "venture for developing evidence-based solutions to problems of court administration and legal services provision. Our goal is to understand, using randomized control trials, what methods truly enhance engagement with and efficiency in the system." The Lab's mission includes: "combat[ing] resistance among the bench and bar to rigorous empirical thinking about the U.S. legal system, and to study it using the gold standard of randomized field experiments." Those interested in learning more about the Lab and its work should visit its website, follow on Facebook or Twitter, or subscribe to the blog.
In an interesting move, the Journal of Law and Courts is "opening its pages to most types of replications, successful or unsuccessful." In its Call For Replications, JLC's editors recognize that journals' traditional "emphasis on novelty means that a replication study has almost no chance of being published unless the replication fails and the failure can be presented as persuasive evidence for an alternative theory." While excluding "successful direct replications, employing the same data and models as the original study," the editors welcome any study that asks whether "findings in one domain extend to another domain or can be replicated using different measures or models."
Based at the University of Denver, IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System, is a national, independent research center dedicated to facilitating continuous improvement and advancing excellence in the American legal system. The Director of Research is a full time position that reports to the Executive Director. Responsibilities include: Developing a strategic agenda and budget for the research team and monitoring progress with respect to that agenda; Designing research projects, reviewing and digesting existing literature; Implementing research design, consistent with social science expectations and norms; and Supervising research staff in implementation of research design. For more information click here.
The folks at the American Psychology-Law Society (here) recently announced a new grant opportunity for: “research that investigates new or understudied topics in psychology and law, enhances the diversification of psychology and law research through novel theoretical or methodological approaches that are cross-disciplinary in nature, and/or promotes the impact of research by considering novel populations or new problems or processes within the legal system, to include collaboration with practitioners or policymakers.” The particulars on this Request for Grant Proposals are found here. Please note the Nov. 1, 2016, deadline.
Many who teach empirical methods in law schools struggle with identifying satisfactory course materials (casebooks, textbooks, statistical packages, supplemental reading, etc.). For most, the decision on how to structure and teach the class often drives decisions on course materials. On the casebook front, the first edition (2010) of Empirical Methods in Law, co-edited by Robert Lawless, Jennifer Robbennolt, and Thomas Ulen (all at Illinois), enriched the small but growing number of available options. The Lawless et al.'s 2nd edition (2016) improves an already strong casebook.
Lawless, Robbennolt, and Ulen’s Empirical Methods in Law (2nd ed., 2016) “brings the basic principles and concepts of social-science research to the desks of law students and lawyers who expect to work with data experts. Now available in a second edition, the updated text continues its focus on explaining basic principles and concepts in an intuitive style requiring no prior knowledge of math or statistics. The text also continues its emphasis on the importance of research design as well as statistical methods.” The second edition’s features include:
"Available in softcover and competitively priced, making the book accessible either as a principal course text or as a supplemental text.
An extensive online set of resources: Teachers Manual, PowerPoint slides, problems, example datasets, bibliography, glossary of terms.
Broad perspectives from three authors from three different methodological traditions that results in a presentation of general best practices.
Generous use of examples from the legal world that show how empirical techniques are applied in a range of substantive legal areas.
Coverage of topics often overlooked in the research process such as data coding or communication of results."
Finally, as legal education's costs continues to rise, the casebook's move to a less expensive softcover and promise for "competitive" pricing joins a welcome (and much-needed) trend in casebook publishing.
Joe Cecil at the Federal Judicial Center altered me to an interesting on-going project, sponsored by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine's Committee on Science, Technology, and Law (CSTL). The CSTL has overseen the development of a series of educational modules that seek to elucidate the role of science in policy decision-making, “with a particular emphasis on scientific and statistical methods of inference.” Access to existing modules (with more promised in the future) is here. Click here for an introductory overview of the project.
The Journal of Law, Finance, and Accounting’s (JLFA) fourth conference, to be held at Northwestern Law School, 375 East Chicago Avenue, is scheduled for Friday, November 11th and Saturday, November 12th, 2016, ending by mid-afternoon on Saturday. The Conference’s Call For Papers deadline has been extended to July 18, 2016. Click here for information about JLFA; click here for submission information.