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date: 06 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Over the last three decades, the economics of judicial behaviour has revealed itself most prominently in the field now known as Law and Positive Political Theory (Law and PPT). Instead of the traditional focus of ‘law and economics’ on the normative efficiency of legal rules, Law and PPT identifies the role of competition among legal and political institutions for policy outcomes, with these outcomes usually taking the form of legislative enactments, executive action, judicial opinions, or administrative agency pronouncements (regulations). This article illustrates the ‘law’ features of Law and PPT, while keeping the economics of judicial decision-making — especially the efficiency-driven, game-theoretic, utility maximization features — at the forefront of the analysis. It begins by summarizing basic elements of Law and PPT as relevant to judicial decision-making. It then discusses context-specific applications of Law and PPT where the craft of law is revealed as strategy.

Keywords: economics, judicial behaviour, law, positive political theory, competition, legal institutions, policy outcomes

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