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Using quantitative and qualitative data from a large national sample of lawyers, we examine self-reports of perceived discrimination in the legal workplace. Across three waves of surveys, we find that persons of color, white women, and LGBTQ attorneys are far more likely to perceive they have been a target of discrimination than white men. These differences hold in multivariate models that control for social background, status in the profession and the work organization, and characteristics of the work organization. Qualitative comments describing these experiences reveal that lawyers of different races, genders, and sexual orientations are exposed to distinctive types of bias, that supervisors and clients are the most frequent sources of discriminatory treatment, and the often-overt character of perceived discrimination. These self-reports suggest that bias in the legal workplace is widespread and rooted in the same hierarchies of race, gender, and sexual orientation that pervade society.
Lempert, Chambers, and Adams (2000; hereafter LCA) make an important contribution to both the debate on affirmative action in legal education and the sociology of the legal profession. We find their empirical results credible and agree with their interpretations of the data related to arguments about the role of affirmative action in Michigan's admissions policies. Yet, in crafting an analysis to demonstrate the similarities in the career outcomes of minority and white graduates, they have minimized evidence that points to substantial continuing patterns of inequality by race and gender within the legal profession. Moreover, LCA only begin to illuminate the mechanisms that produce the career patterns they document. Of particular importance is the question of how race, class, and gender interact to shape lawyers' careers-a topic LCA largely reserve for future analyses.
The extent and nature of lawyers' participation in civic life probably has important effects on the character of the community's activity and its outcomes. Where and how lawyers participate in voluntary associations may influence the ability of those organizations to function within the larger structure of American institutions.
This paper compares findings from two surveys of Chicago lawyers, the first conducted in 1975 and the second in 1994-95. Contrary to some expectations, the available evidence does not suggest that community activities of lawyers decreased. Moreover, lawyers' energies in 1995 appear to have been devoted more often to socially concerned organizations, those with a reformist agenda, than had been the case in 1975. The types of organizations with the greatest increase in activity were religious and civic associations. A smaller percentage of the respondents held leadership positions in 1995 than in 1975, but, because of a doubling in the number of lawyers, the best estimate is that the bar's absolute level of contribution to community leadership did not change greatly.
In both 1975 and 1995, a hierarchy of social prestige appears to have influenced the pattern of lawyers' community activities. Lawyers who had higher incomes, were middle-aged, were Protestants, and who had attended elite law schools were more likely to be active or leaders in most kinds of organizations. In ethnic and fraternal organizations, however, the elites of the profession had relatively low rates of participation, while government lawyers, solo practitioners, and graduates of less prestigious law schools predominated. Status hierarchies within the broader community—as well as social differences in taste, preference, or “culture”—clearly penetrate the bar.
Despite dramatic changes in size and specialization, large law firms have remained remarkably unchanged in other respects. Introducing research on major Chicago law firms, this article examines how large law firms have changed so much by changing so little. It proposes a theory of law firm growth emphasizing the relationship between changes in the market for sophisticated legal services and changes in the approach law firms have taken to organizing their practices. The author discusses the organizational structure of large law firms, giving particular attention to the various roles that lawyers play in such firms. After speculating on trends affecting large law firms, he points to implications of these trends for law and social change.
Growth and bureaucratization have begun to transform patterns of recruitment and career development in large law firms. Based on a case study of four large Chicago firms, this article examines these changes and their implications. The findings indicate that the social composition of large firms has become substantially more heterogeneous with respect to the status of law school attended, gender, and ethnoreligious background. However, data on lawyers' careers suggest that associates entering firms today face an increasingly bureaucratic organizational context marked by higher levels of turnover, earlier and more intensive specialization, decreased levels of client responsibility, and more frequent assignment to large-scale litigation. The article also addresses the dynamics of individual choice over type of work performed in firms. Lawyers initially working in litigation fields are far more likely to change fields of practice than are lawyers who begin in office practice fields, reflecting the increased tendency for firms to assign new associates to litigation as well as the alienating propensity of large-firm litigation for many associates. Paradoxically, a greater proportion of lawyers in traditionally organized, general service firms than in bureaucratically organized, specialty firms report that their choice of work was dictated by the firm. Also, somewhat surprisingly, the frequency with which firms explicitly direct lawyers into particular fields has not increased from earlier periods. The article concludes that these anomalies result from the fact that firms control the career choices of lawyers, and always have, but that the way such control is exercised varies across firms and historical periods.
Despite the significance of interest representation to theories of law and politics, the social organization of interest representation has not received systematic empirical analysis. Based on interviews with 776 individuals engaged in the representation of private interests concerning national policies on agriculture, energy, health, and labor, this article reports some findings concerning the social and political characteristics of representatives, the nature of their work and their relationships with client organizations. Three models of the social organization of interest representation are developed and examined: a model based on substantive expertise, an institutional targets model, and a client-based model. The findings indicate that representation is predominately organized around client interests Although lawyers constitute a significant and distinctive group among representatives, they are neither as numerous nor as active in policy making as is commonly assumed. The analysis suggests that representatives are not likely to exercise influence in the policy-making process that is autonomous from client organizations.
The History, Electrocardiogram (ECG), Age, Risk Factors, and Troponin (HEART) score is a decision aid designed to risk stratify emergency department (ED) patients with acute chest pain. It has been validated for ED use, but it has yet to be evaluated in a prehospital setting.
A prehospital modified HEART score can predict major adverse cardiac events (MACE) among undifferentiated chest pain patients transported to the ED.
A retrospective cohort study of patients with chest pain transported by two county-based Emergency Medical Service (EMS) agencies to a tertiary care center was conducted. Adults without ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) were included. Inter-facility transfers and those without a prehospital 12-lead ECG or an ED troponin measurement were excluded. Modified HEART scores were calculated by study investigators using a standardized data collection tool for each patient. All MACE (death, myocardial infarction [MI], or coronary revascularization) were determined by record review at 30 days. The sensitivity and negative predictive values (NPVs) for MACE at 30 days were calculated.
Over the study period, 794 patients met inclusion criteria. A MACE at 30 days was present in 10.7% (85/794) of patients with 12 deaths (1.5%), 66 MIs (8.3%), and 12 coronary revascularizations without MI (1.5%). The modified HEART score identified 33.2% (264/794) of patients as low risk. Among low-risk patients, 1.9% (5/264) had MACE (two MIs and three revascularizations without MI). The sensitivity and NPV for 30-day MACE was 94.1% (95% CI, 86.8-98.1) and 98.1% (95% CI, 95.6-99.4), respectively.
Prehospital modified HEART scores have a high NPV for MACE at 30 days. A study in which prehospital providers prospectively apply this decision aid is warranted.
Whether monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins differ from each other in a variety of phenotypes is important for genetic twin modeling and for inferences made from twin studies in general. We analyzed whether there were differences in individual, maternal and paternal education between MZ and DZ twins in a large pooled dataset. Information was gathered on individual education for 218,362 adult twins from 27 twin cohorts (53% females; 39% MZ twins), and on maternal and paternal education for 147,315 and 143,056 twins respectively, from 28 twin cohorts (52% females; 38% MZ twins). Together, we had information on individual or parental education from 42 twin cohorts representing 19 countries. The original education classifications were transformed to education years and analyzed using linear regression models. Overall, MZ males had 0.26 (95% CI [0.21, 0.31]) years and MZ females 0.17 (95% CI [0.12, 0.21]) years longer education than DZ twins. The zygosity difference became smaller in more recent birth cohorts for both males and females. Parental education was somewhat longer for fathers of DZ twins in cohorts born in 1990–1999 (0.16 years, 95% CI [0.08, 0.25]) and 2000 or later (0.11 years, 95% CI [0.00, 0.22]), compared with fathers of MZ twins. The results show that the years of both individual and parental education are largely similar in MZ and DZ twins. We suggest that the socio-economic differences between MZ and DZ twins are so small that inferences based upon genetic modeling of twin data are not affected.
This paper aims to situate functional abstraction in light of systems thinking. While function does not extensively appear in systems thinking literature, the literature does identify function as part of systems thinking that enables us to recognize and connect that function has a role in building a systems thinking approach for students. A systems thinking approach is valuable for students since it helps them view a system holistically. In this research, we measure how well students are able to abstract function. We asked students to generate functions for two different products and examined how students taught functional modeling and function enumeration compare to students who are only taught function enumeration. The student responses were examined using a rubric that we developed and validated for assessing function. This rubric may be used to classify functions by correctness (correct, partially correct, and incorrect) and categories (high level, interface, low level, and ambiguous). On questions where students were not explicitly asked to write a high-level function or low-level function, and so on, students who were taught functional modeling were able to better demonstrate systems thinking in their responses (low-level and interface functions) than those students who were only taught function enumeration.
Myrick, Nelson and Nielson evaluate the role of race in the decision to file pro se in employment discrimination litigation. The authors show that black plaintiffs are 2.5 times more likely to file pro se than white plaintiffs, a disparity that is larger than any other plaintiff characteristics tested, including sex and occupation. Data from employment discrimination cases further indicate that pro se plaintiffs have significantly worse litigation outcomes than those with representation.
This chapter uses statistical analysis to show that minority plaintiffs in employment discrimination lawsuits – in particular African Americans – are much more likely than white plaintiffs to file without a lawyer. This difference is salient because pro se plaintiffs have significantly worse litigation outcomes than those with representation. Furthermore, we show that pro se plaintiffs tend to misunderstand their legal issues and feel that the courts have failed them. While past access to justice initiatives have addressed these negative consequences of lacking a lawyer, they have not systematically examined racial differences in representation rates, or tried to explain why these differences exist. Remarkably, access to justice approaches have largely overlooked race, instead focusing primarily on poverty as a barrier to finding a lawyer. This chapter shows that race matters in representation rates. It then examines possible reasons for this ignored but troubling disparity. We show that race operates in complex ways, both for minority plaintiffs seeking lawyers, and for the lawyers who decide whether to accept them as clients.
PRO SE LITIGATION: DATA AND PAST FINDINGS
Compared to represented plaintiffs, pro se plaintiffs were significantly more likely to have their cases dismissed or lose on summary judgment, and were less likely to reach early settlement. This empirical evidence proving the serious disadvantage that pro se status entails is consistent with other access to justice research on various types of legal action. Although we know of no other studies that look specifically at the outcomes for pro se employment discrimination plaintiffs, a growing body of work shows that employment discrimination litigation in general disfavors plaintiffs. In addition, research on pro se plaintiffs suggests that they suffer most when they file claims involving complex or document-intensive areas of law, and that such issues may compel plaintiffs to seek an attorney instead of attempting to self-represent.