The second Network Analysis in Law conference will take place in Krakow, Poland, December 10-12. The call for papers outlines intriguing lines of research about legal networks:
We invite papers and demonstrations of original works on the following aspects of network analysis in the legal field:
- Analysis and visualization of networks of people and institutions: law is made by people, about and for people and institutions. These people or institutions form networks, be it academic scholars, criminals or public bodies and these networks can be detected, mapped, analysed and visualised. Can we better study institutions and their activities by analysing their internal structure or the network of their relations? Does it help in finding the ‘capo di tutti i capi’ in organized crime?
- Analysis and visualization of the network of law: law itself forms networks. Sources of law refer to other sources of law and together constitute (part of) the core of the legal system. In the same way as above, we can represent, analyse and visualise this network. Can it help in determining the authority of case law or the likelihood a decision will be overruled? Does it shed light on complex or problematic parts of legislation? Is it possible to exploit networks visualization to support legal analysis and information retrieval?
- Combination of the first and second aspects: people or institutions create sources of law or appear in them: Research on the network of one may shed light on the other. Two examples: (1) Legal scholars write commentaries on proposed legislation or court decisions. Sometimes they write these together. These commentaries may provide information on the network of scholars; the position of an author in the network of scholars may provide information on the authority of the comment. (2) The application of network analysis techniques to court decisions and proceedings is proving to be helpful in detecting criminal organizations and in analysing their structure and evolution over time.
I wish I could go!