This chapter introduces the principal-agent model, treating judges as agents of society. We begin by introducing a contrast between a judiciary organized around careers, in which judges enter the profession with relatively low levels of human capital but then progress in a hierarchy, with what is sometimes called the recognition model, in which judges are hired later in life with relatively high levels of human capital. The former model emphasizes collective reputation and internal audiences for judging, while the latter model emphasizes individual reputation and external audiences. The chapter also lays out the structure of the book and argument, presenting summaries of each of the substantive chapters that follow and helping to lay out our empirical approach, which uses suggestive case studies from prominent jurisdictions.
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