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date: 05 December 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter uses the separation of powers (SOP) literature to explore the application of strategic models to judicial behavior. Strategic conceptions of judicial decision-making are often presented as a theoretical alternative to the attitudinal model. A review of the basic SOP model highlights the key institutional assumptions that motivate the different major variants of the SOP model and the differences with the attitudinal model. While the empirical literature reveals a tremendous amount of progress in the past twenty-five years, empirical support for the classic statutory SOP model remains elusive. However, the same cannot be said for newer institutional legitimacy models. The chapter concludes with suggestions for directions of future research.

Keywords: strategic decision-making, separation of powers, strategic model, attitudinal model, institutional legitimacy models

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