Edited by Padideh Ala’i and Robert G. Vaughn
Chapter 4: The associations of judicial transparency with administrative transparency
This chapter asserts that the justifications for administrative transparency apply equally well to judicial transparency. This assertion requires the reader to believe that the reasons for reliance on transparency to control administrative discretion animate concerns regarding judicial transparency. Those reasons reflect different theories of administration, theories that support conflicting justifications for the exercise of discretion by unelected state officials. This chapter tests the assertion that theories of administration also apply to assessments of judicial transparency. This test applies these theories in respect to transparency in the federal courts in civil litigation. The federal courts in the United States seem least amenable to the application of administrative theory. Unlike the judiciaries in many countries, the federal judiciary is not viewed as another state bureaucracy or as subject to executive administration as would be evidenced by oversight of a minister of justice. Federal judges are experienced members of the legal profession and of academia before being appointed, rather than civil servants who have advanced within a judicial bureaucracy. Federal judges serve for life on good behavior; they are not directly supervised by superiors in a judicial hierarchy with personnel authority over them. These attributes of federal judges suggest a system seemingly unlike administrative bureaucracies.
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