This article discusses the potential contribution to the policymaking process of systematic empirical research on the behavior of civil juries. It provides a brief primer on methods of jury research; summarizes some of the major patterns in liability, compensatory, and punitive jury judgments; and attempts to explain how civil juries reach such judgments, drawing heavily on research on mock juries and describing the effects of extralegal variables on jury judgment.
Originally published in: Verdict: Assessing the Civil Jury System, Brookings Institution, 1993, pp. 137-180.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation reprint series. The Reprint was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.