Table of Contents

Methods of Comparative Law

Methods of Comparative Law

Research Handbooks in Comparative Law series

Edited by Pier Giuseppe Monateri

Methods of Comparative Law brings to bear new thinking on topics including: the mutual relationship between space and law; the plot that structures legal narratives, identities and judicial interpretations; a strategic approach to legal decision making; and the inner potentialities of the ‘comparative law and economics’ approach to the field. Together, the contributors reassess the scientific understanding of comparative methodologies in the field of law in order to provide both critical insights into the traditional literature and an original overview of the most recent and purposive trends.

Chapter 16: Quantitative Methods in Comparative Law

Francesco Parisi and Barbara Luppi

Subjects: law - academic, comparative law


Francesco Parisi and Barbara Luppi 1. INTRODUCTION: THE EVOLVING METHODOLOGY OF COMPARATIVE LAW Various important debates have accompanied the growth and evolution of comparative law. These debates have been an important force behind the transformation of the methodology of comparative law during the last several decades.1 Comparative law has evolved away from a merely descriptive methodology that characterized the main contributions to this field prior to the 1950s. The subsequent methodological variants to comparative law followed a variety of analytical approaches, unveiling common elements behind apparently different legal rules as well as revealing substantive differences that existed across legal systems behind the apparent uniformity of black letter law. Here, the focus on comparative legal history and the identification of legal formants typical of the best scholars in comparative law of the second half of the twentieth century has generated important contributions, identifying synecdoches and articulating cryptotypes. Unlike prior methodological transformations within the field of comparative law, the influence of the ‘comparative law and economics method’ has been at the same time broad and controversial. Comparative law and economics is increasingly fashionable among academics. It is probably the most successful example of the recent expansion of law and economics into areas that were once considered beyond the realm of economic analysis. Its popularity notwithstanding, comparative law and economics also attracts several criticisms and generates academic skepticism. The critiques are often on point and highlight the many misuses of economic analysis in comparative law (and law in general) and the...

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