This edition of Legal Research Manual builds on many previous editions. While the manual is designed principally for use with the first year legal research classes, upper year law students will also find it a useful reference.
Contents: Preface -- 1. Common object of legal research -- 2. Critical angles in legal research -- 3. Empirical legal research -- 4. Fundamental research -- 5. Humans in law's grammar -- 6. Explorative research -- 7. Epilogue: Horizons of legal research -- Glossary -- Bibliography -- Index.
This book fills this gap by offering a step-by-step guide to doing a systematic literature review in legal scholarship. It first discusses what a systematic literature review is and why it is so important. It then moves consecutively through the process of delineating your topic and determining what information to search for, designing and carrying out a systematic search for relevant literature, critically appraising the literature, and synthesizing, discussing and presenting your findings.
The first part deals with general matters such as meaning, evolution, and scope of legal research; systematization of thinking process; objectivity and ethics in legal research; and building a theme through an appropriate research plan. The second part engages with various ways through which doctrinal legal research can be conducted. This includes doctrinal, analytical, historical, comparative, and philosophical methods of conducting legal research. Part Three unravels discussion on non-doctrinal legal research by highlighting empirical, qualitative, and quantitative methods of legal research. It also catalogues the tools employed for non-doctrinal legal research and explains the method of using them. Part four takes to the fields where combination of doctrinal and non-doctrinal legal research can be attempted. Multi-method legal research, policy research,action research, and feminist legal research occupy this field. The final part reflects over the steps involved in research-based critical legal writing, as distinct from client-related or norm-creating legal writing.
Until quite recently, questions about methodology in legal research have been largely confined to understanding the role of doctrinal research as a scholarly discipline. Legal scholarship has been torn between, on the one hand, grasping the expanding reality of law and its context, and, on the other, reducing this complex whole to manageable proportions. The purely internal analysis of a legal system, isolated from any societal context, remains an option, but as law aims at ordering society and influencing human behavior, this approach is felt by many scholars to be insufficient. Consequently, many attempts have been made to conceive legal research differently. Social scientific and comparative approaches have proven fruitful. However, does the introduction of other approaches leave merely a residue of 'legal doctrine,' to which pockets of social sciences can be added, or should legal doctrine be merged with the social sciences? What would such a broad interdisciplinary field look like and what would its methods be? This book answers these questions, focusing on the growing need to concentrate on the various methods of legal research.
The aim of this book is to explain in clear terms some of the main methodological approaches in legal research. This is an edited collection, with each chapter written by specialists in their field, researching in a variety of jurisdictions. Each contributor addresses the topic of "lay decision makers in the legal system" from one particular methodological perspective, explaining how they would approach the issue and discussing why their particular method might, or might not, be suited to this topic.