July 01, 2014

Spotlight on Implicit Bias

<h2><a href="http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/business/2012/09/women-studying-science-face-gender-bias-study-finds/">Women Studying Science Face Gender Bias, Study Finds</a></h2>
<p>This small study finds that &quot;that  science faculty at six leading universities were more inclined to hire and  mentor male undergraduate degree applicants over female applicants when  reviewing identical resumes where the only difference in credentials was the  gender assignment.&quot; This follows similar research on resumes generally  with names associated with certain genders and races and ethnicity.</p>
<h2><strong><a href="http://nawl.timberlakepublishing.com/files/FINAL%20NAWL%20FOUNDATION%20PRESS%20RELEASE%2011-13.pdf">National  Survey of Women&rsquo;s Initiatives</a></strong></h2>
<p>The NAWL Foundation┬«, the research part of the National  Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL), released the results of its <em>National  Survey of Women&rsquo;s Initiatives: The Strategy, Structure And Scope Of Women&rsquo;s  Initiatives In Law Firms</em>. The report notes four key points: &ldquo;First, women  are far less likely to be equity partners then men. . . . Second, women are not  credited as rainmakers at the same rates as men. . . .Third, women are not  typically in positions of firm-wide leadership. . . . Fourth, women are not compensated by  firms at the same level as men: men out-earn women at every level beyond  associate. . . .Fourth, women are not compensated by firms at the same level as  men: men out-earn women at every level beyond associate.&rdquo;&nbsp; The Report then  observes: &ldquo;Women&rsquo;s initiatives have been sponsored by firms, starting about 10  years ago, with the general purpose of providing innovative policies, practices  and structures for advancing women in law firms.&nbsp; Yet, what such  initiatives actually do, and the impact they have on women in firms, is all too  often not clear and at worst, open to criticism bordering on cynicism.&rdquo;</p>
<h2><a href="http://www.fedbar.org/Publications/The-Federal-Lawyer/Juries-and-the-Disabled.aspx?FT=.pdf"><strong>Hon. Donovan W. Frank and&nbsp;Brian N. Aleinikoff,  Juries and the Disabled, The Federal Lawyer (December 2012).</strong></a></h2>
<p>The lead story in the Federal Lawyer, the magazine of the  Federal Bar Association discusses a blind juror and how that juror was  perceived initially and as the trial and deliberations proceeded. While the  article does not mentions <em>implicit bias</em>&nbsp;explicitly as such, the  description of the juror and jury's experience offers a good sense of how  stereotypes worked and were changed through exposure. The article includes a  good history of the question of individuals with disabilities serving on  juries, the ADA, the &quot;impediments&quot; faced by individuals with disabilities  in jury situations, and a broader review of the value of diversity.</p>

<h2><u>Implicit Bias in the Courtroom<strong>, </strong>59 UCLA L. Rev. 1124 (2012).</u></h2>
<p>By Jerry Kang, Judge Mark Bennett, Devon Carbado, Pam  Casey, Nilanjana Dasgupta, David Faigman, Rachel Godsil, Anthony G. Greenwald,  Justin Levinson and Jennifer Mnookin</p>
<p>Written by a combination of leading scholars and  practitioners, this article offers a great summary of the emerging information  on implicit bias as it relates to courts. The authors explain that they sought  to explore how, if at all, courts should and can move to a better model of  human decision-making that reflects the emerging scientific data. After  summarizing the underlying science on implicit biases, they review two areas or  &ldquo;trajectories&rdquo; where this information is particularly salient in court  proceedings: 1) steps of the criminal litigation process and 2) employment  discrimination litigation. The authors suggest several possible &ldquo;interventions&rdquo;  for judges and juries to help mitigate the effects of implicit biases.</p>