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Judicial Independence At The Crossroads

Author: Stephen B Burbank
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISBN: 1452262888
Size: 69.93 MB
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Concerned that scholars in various disciplines were talking past each other and that policy debates concerning judicial independence were impoverished, the editors convened a conference of scholars from the disciplines of law, political science, history, economics and sociology. Judicial Independence at the Crossroads: An Interdisciplinary Approach is a collection of essays reflecting the disciplinary perspectives of the authors and the shared understanding that emerged from the conference.

The Politics Of Judicial Independence In The Uk S Changing Constitution

Author: Graham Gee
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1316240533
Size: 67.46 MB
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Judicial independence is generally understood as requiring that judges must be insulated from political life. The central claim of this work is that far from standing apart from the political realm, judicial independence is a product of it. It is defined and protected through interactions between judges and politicians. In short, judicial independence is a political achievement. This is the main conclusion of a three-year research project on the major changes introduced by the Constitutional Reform Act 2005, and the consequences for judicial independence and accountability. The authors interviewed over 150 judges, politicians, civil servants and practitioners to understand the day-to-day processes of negotiation and interaction between politicians and judges. They conclude that the greatest threat to judicial independence in future may lie not from politicians actively seeking to undermine the courts, but rather from their increasing disengagement from the justice system and the judiciary.

The Dynamics Of Judicial Independence

Author: Lorne Neudorf
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319498843
Size: 22.80 MB
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This book examines the legal principle of judicial independence in comparative perspective with the goal of advancing a better understanding of the idea of an independent judiciary more generally. From an initial survey of judicial systems in different countries, it is clear that the understanding and practice of judicial independence take a variety of forms. Scholarly literature likewise provides a range of views on what judicial independence means, with scholars often advocating a preferred conception of a model court for achieving ‘true judicial independence’ as part of a rule of law system. This book seeks to reorient the prevailing approach to the study of judicial independence by better understanding how judicial independence operates within domestic legal systems in its institutional and legal dimensions. It asks how and why different conceptualisations of judicial independence emerge over time by comparing detailed case studies of courts in two legally pluralistic states, which share inheritances of British rule and the common law. By tracing the development of judicial independence in the legal systems of Malaysia and Pakistan from the time of independence to the present, the book offers an insightful comparison of how judicial independence took shape and developed in these countries over time. From this comparison, it suggests a number of contextual factors that can be seen to play a role in the evolution of judicial independence. The study draws upon the significant divergence observed in the case studies to propose a refined understanding of the idea of an independent judiciary, termed the ‘pragmatic and context-sensitive theory’, which may be seen in contradistinction to a universal approach. While judicial independence responds to the core need of judges to be perceived as an impartial third party by constructing formal and informal constraints on the judge and relationships between judges and others, its meaning in a legal system is inevitably shaped by the judicial role along with other features at the domestic level. The book concludes that the adaptive and pragmatic qualities of judicial independence supply it with relevance and legitimacy within a domestic legal system.

Judicial Independence In Transition

Author: Anja Seibert-Fohr
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3642282997
Size: 23.64 MB
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Strengthening the rule of law has become a key factor for the transition to democracy and the protection of human rights. Though its significance has materialized in international standard setting, the question of implementation is largely unexplored. This book describes judicial independence as a central aspect of the rule of law in different stages of transition to democracy. The collection of state-specific studies explores the legal situation of judiciaries in twenty states from North America, over Western, Central and South-Eastern Europe to post-Soviet states and engages in a comparative legal analysis. Through a detailed account of the current situation it takes stocks, considers advances in and shortcomings of judicial reform and offers advice for future strategies. The book shows that the implementation of judicial independence requires continuous efforts, not only in countries in transition but also in established democracies which are confronted with ever new challenges.

Framed

Author: Sanford Levinson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199930872
Size: 33.75 MB
Format: PDF
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In his widely acclaimed volume Our Undemocratic Constitution, Sanford Levinson boldly argued that our Constitution should not be treated with "sanctimonious reverence," but as a badly flawed document deserving revision. Now Levinson takes us deeper, asking what were the original assumptions underlying our institutions, and whether we accept those assumptions 225 years later. In Framed, Levinson challenges our belief that the most important features of our constitutions concern what rights they protect. Instead, he focuses on the fundamental procedures of governance such as congressional bicameralism; the selection of the President by the electoral college, or the dimensions of the President's veto power--not to mention the near impossibility of amending the United States Constitution. These seemingly "settled" and "hardwired" structures contribute to the now almost universally recognized "dysfunctionality" of American politics. Levinson argues that we should stop treating the United States Constitution as uniquely exemplifying the American constitutional tradition. We should be aware of the 50 state constitutions, often interestingly different--and perhaps better--than the national model. Many states have updated their constitutions by frequent amendment or by complete replacement via state constitutional conventions. California's ungovernable condition has prompted serious calls for a constitutional convention. This constant churn indicates that basic law often reaches the point where it fails and becomes obsolete. Given the experience of so many states, he writes, surely it is reasonable to believe that the U.S. Constitution merits its own updating. Whether we are concerned about making America more genuinely democratic or only about creating a system of government that can more effectively respond to contemporary challenges, we must confront the ways our constitutions, especially the United States Constitution, must be changed in fundamental ways.