Latent Judicial Independence around the Globe, 1948-2010

Linzer and Staton (2015) develop a measurement model for latent concepts commonly encountered in time series, cross-sectional analyses in comparative politics and international relations. Our approach addresses related patterns of missing data, measurement error, temporal dependence, and boundedness found in these data, which derive from the fact that manifestations of the underlying concept are not produced by the units themselves but rather by independent teams of scholars who have tried to measure the concept using more or less similar information. It thus enables scholars to more precisely link conceptual definitions to technical assumptions necessary for estimation. We use the model to generate a new time series, cross-sectional measure of judicial independence, which is available for 50 years and 200 states, and which solves several vexing problems that undermine the utility of existing indictors.

Representative patterns of judicial independence are displayed below. All replication material for the paper are available at the paper's Dataverse
site. If you download the estimates, Drew and I wonder if you would contact us and let us know about your project.
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