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The Instrumental Value of Legal Accountability

King, JA; (2013) The Instrumental Value of Legal Accountability. In: Bamforth, N and Leyland, P, (eds.) Accountability in the Contemporary Constitution. (pp. 124-152). Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

This chapter aims to present an account of the value of legal accountability by focusing on its role as an instrument that produces certain prima facie benefits. In Section B, it introduces the instrumentalist approach, defines legal accountability by reference to its core institutional attributes, and justifies speaking of the value of legal accountability in general and prima facie terms rather than only in particular contexts. In Section C, the chapter presents a list of ten prima facie benefits: focus; principled reasoning; constitutional authority; independence and impartiality; rule interpretation competence; procedural fairness competence; participation; expressiveness; publicity; and inter-institutional collaboration. It is argued both that these benefits are in fact features of legal accountability, and that they do or can produce valuable ends. Both claims are defended against some common objections, the ultimate conclusion being that the better objections justify judicial restraint but do not refute any of the core claims.

Type: Book chapter
Title: The Instrumental Value of Legal Accountability
ISBN-13: 9780199670024
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199670024.001.0001
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199670024...
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © Oxford University Press 2013. Originally published as King, JA; (2013) The Instrumental Value of Legal Accountability. In: Bamforth, N and Leyland, P, (eds.) Accountability in the Contemporary Constitution. (pp. 124-152). Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK, reproduced by permission of the editors: https://global.oup.com/academic/product/accountability-in-the-contemporary-constitution-9780199670024?cc=gb&lang=en&.
Keywords: instrumentalist approach, institutional design, legal accountability, judicial restraint
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Laws
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1472224
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