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Juries, Lay participation in law




The jury in the United States is fraught with paradoxes. Even though the number of jury trials in the United States continues to decline, jury trials play a prominent role in American culture and continue to occupy headlines in newspapers and top stories on television. Americans might not always agree with the verdict that any given jury renders, but they continue to express their support for the jury system in poll after poll. This Symposium of the Chicago-Kent Law Review presents new theories and research, with a focus on the contemporary American jury. The Introduction begins by connecting discussions at two recent jury conferences. The conference held in Oñati, Spain examined developments in jury systems worldwide and the conference held at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law focused on the American jury. This Symposium includes several of the papers inspired by these conferences. This Introduction, in addition to describing issues raised at the conferences, provides an overview of the articles in this Symposium, and concludes by presenting an agenda for the next generation of jury research, with a recommendation for collaborative approaches to incorporate distinctive methods and perspectives.

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