STRUCTURED INTERVIEWS WITH AMERICAN JUDGES: INCREASING DIVERSITY IN THE JUDICIARY
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe focus of the Judicial Diversity Project is to determine what factors– both external and internal– contribute to the lack of diversity within the American Bench. Researchers have previously utilized a social cognitive process model, which integrated Goal Congruity and Cultural Mismatch Theories to elucidate why first-generation, women, and underrepresented racial minority (URM) lawyers– all of which can be classified as underrepresented– have a reduced likelihood of pursuing and excelling in judicial positions (Carroll et al., 2020). Moving forward, the experiences, motivations, and values of American judges have been explored. Ten judges have been interviewed thus far. At the conclusion of each interview, we engaged in a qualitative analysis of the judges' open-ended responses. Their responses were then codified and placed into specific categories (e.g. codes). Notably, ten codes were identified; all codes were either consistent with Procedural Justice Theory, Social Role Theory, Goal Congruity Theory, or Cultural Mismatch Theory. The codes suggest implications for how we might increase diversity within the American judiciary, as well as adequately understand the goals and motivations of those that seek out high-status positions (e.g. judges/justices). Our findings and implications may potentially be utilized for future research seeking to diversify the judiciary