Ideological bias in constitutional judgments: Experimental analysis and potential solutions

Elena Kantorowicz-Reznichenko*, Jarosław Kantorowicz, Keren Weinshall

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Despite the importance and neutrality of constitutional rights, empirical research suggests that ideological inclinations unduly affect their assessment and application. In this study, we conducted two experiments in order to investigate the nature of the ideological bias in a constitutionally relevant decision (right-to-demonstration), and how to mitigate it. We find that ideological bias is driven by in-group favoritism. In addition, we find that prior commitment, through a signed declaration, to be impartial or to prioritize constitutional rights encourages participants not to disfavor out-groups. On the other hand, we do not find evidence that using a temporary blinding procedure mitigates the ideological bias.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)716-757
Number of pages42
JournalJournal of Empirical Legal Studies
Volume19
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Journal of Empirical Legal Studies published by Cornell Law School and Wiley Periodicals LLC.

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