Comparative Judicial Review
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Comparative Judicial Review

Edited by Erin F. Delaney and Rosalind Dixon

Constitutional courts around the world play an increasingly central role in day-to-day democratic governance. Yet scholars have only recently begun to develop the interdisciplinary analysis needed to understand this shift in the relationship of constitutional law to politics. This edited volume brings together the leading scholars of constitutional law and politics to provide a comprehensive overview of judicial review, covering theories of its creation, mechanisms of its constraint, and its comparative applications, including theories of interpretation and doctrinal developments. This book serves as a single point of entry for legal scholars and practitioners interested in understanding the field of comparative judicial review in its broader political and social context.
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Chapter 12: Courts and support structures: beyond the classic narrative

David Landau


This chapter explores and expands upon Charles Epp’s canonical idea of judicial reliance on support structures for success in issuing and implementing decisions. It does so in two ways. First, it draws on examples from a number of countries to argue that support structures are heterogeneous, and that much can be gained by focusing on the different patterns of support for courts. One might, for example, differentiate between political parties, ordinary court judges, domestic civil society groups of different types, international NGOs, or various slices of the public; different forms of support may affect judicial behavior and success in predictable, testable ways. Second, it argues that courts are not just passively reliant on their support structures, but rather that they can take actions, within limits, to strengthen and influence them. It gives examples of ways in which courts can build support from the public, international actors, and other groups.

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