Quantitative Approaches to Empirical Legal Research

Lee Epstein and Andrew D. Martin

in The Oxford Handbook of Empirical Legal Research

Published in print November 2010 | ISBN: 9780199542475
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Law

 Quantitative Approaches to Empirical Legal Research

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This article deals with the objective nuances of empirical research, within the ambit of the quantitative kind. It begins with an overview of conducting empirical legal research, discussing its research design, implementation, and challenges faced. Theorizing in empirical legal scholarship comes in different forms: in some projects theories seek to provide insight into a wide range of phenomena, others are tailored to fit particular situations. In the clarification process the researcher translates abstract notions into concrete ones. To convert the data into an analyzable form, empirical legal researchers make use of a variety of data-generation mechanisms. Researchers can implement random sampling in various ways depending on the nature of the problem. Data analysis enables researchers to compare their overlap. The goal of empirical legal research is to find facts about the unknown. The last step of empirical legal research is to present its results, for which, documentation is a requisite.

Keywords: empirical legal research; quantitative approaches; research design; implementation; data-generation; random sampling; documentation

Article.  10207 words. 

Subjects: Law ; Comparative Law

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