Podcasts

These interviews about recent research on procedural fairness were featured on the Procedural Fairness Blog and are available with more detailed descriptions at https://proceduralfairnessblog.org/tag/interview/. The interviewer was Justine Greve, a staff member with the Kansas Court of Appeals.

Podcast 1: Improving Judicial Behavior (10:03)
In late 2014, the American Judges Association convened a group of experts and advocates to talk about procedural fairness. They've all done research on the subject or worked with courts trying to improve the way the public sees them. In this podcast, we present their suggestions for judges who want to improve communication from the bench.

Podcast 2: Procedural Fairness in Judicial Training and Evaluation (9:22)
In this podcast, relying on interviews done by the American Judges Association in 2014, we look at how the principles of procedural fairness can be used to evaluate judges and help them become better at what they do. Court personnel working with initiatives in Utah and Colorado—as well as others with experience in judicial evaluation and training—talk about the benefits to using procedural fairness to rate and train judges.

Podcast 3: Procedural Fairness as a Model for Modern Authority (8:16) 
Expectations about authority are changing, as are ideas about what types of authority are effective. At a time when people expect accountability and transparency from people in power, legal authorities need to exhibit neutrality, give people respect and voice, and demonstrate—through what they do and what they say—that they are worthy of trust. Using interviews conducted at a 2014 meeting on procedural fairness hosted by the American Judges Association, this podcast presents procedural fairness as a modern model for exercising authority.

Podcast 4: Kelly Frailing and Diana Carreon: The Importance of Spanish in a Texas Drug Court

In this interview, Kelly Frailing and Diana Carreon talk about their study of language at a drug court in Laredo, Texas, where most of the population is Hispanic—and generally bilingual. They found that participants felt that being able to speak with the judge in Spanish was a positive feature of the court and was important to success in their case. This was true even though almost all of the drug-court participants they studied were bilingual from an early age, fluent in English as well as Spanish. Frailing and Carreon interpret their findings and discuss the significance of language beyond just being able to understand what’s going on.

Full Interview

Short Interview

Podcast 5: Megan Bears Augustyn: How Do Adolescents Respond to Procedural Justice?

As a student and professor of criminal justice, Megan Bears Augustyn noticed that the positive effects of procedural fairness were not as strong among adolescents as among adults. She set up a study to investigate and found that the effects of procedural fairness varied for different types of adolescent offenders. As she explains in this podcast, fair treatment didn’t have much of an effect on early-onset offenders, who start offending at a young age and often have mental-health issues or problems at home. For adolescent offenders who start later and are more influenced by peer pressure, however, she says fair treatment is more likely to affect attitudes and help curb illegal behavior.

Full Interview

Short Interview

Podcast 6: Thomas Baker: Shared Race and Perceptions of Fairness Among Female Offenders

In this podcast, criminal justice professor Thomas Baker discusses a study he conducted on perceptions of procedural fairness and obligation to obey the law among inmates in a women’s prison. Baker and his colleagues surveyed female inmates and found that those who saw the courts as more procedurally just reported a significantly greater obligation to obey the law. As for what influenced the perception of procedural justice in the first place, Baker says he found that the inmates were more likely to see the courts as procedurally fair if they were of the same minority status as the prosecutor in their case (both white or both nonwhite).

Full Interview

Short Interview

Podcast 7: Heidi Levitt: What Makes a Judge Wise?

If there are two qualities associated with good judging, they’re wisdom and fairness. According to psychology professor Heidi Levitt, those traits are closely related. Levitt has published two articles on judicial wisdom, one focusing on wise decision making and the other on the development of judicial wisdom. Both studies relied on interviews with judges who were nominated as wise by their colleagues. In this podcast, she discusses the behaviors and attitudes that these judges associated with judicial wisdom—traits reminiscent of procedural-fairness principles. She also talks about ways wise judges deal with emotions and handle cases where the correct legal outcome may not feel fair.

Full Interview

Short Interview

Podcast 8: Justin Nix: Procedural Fairness from the Police Perspective

Discussions of police legitimacy often focus on public perceptions, but in this podcast, Justin Nix talks about the topic from the police perspective. Referencing research from his dissertation and several recent articles, Nix looks at what police officers think makes them legitimate in the eyes of the public and what influences how officers feel about themselves. He discusses the importance of self-legitimacy and procedural fairness in light of recent negative publicity surrounding policing. While negative portrayals of police have made some officers less willing to partner with the community to solve problems, that wasn’t the case for officers who viewed themselves and their agencies as legitimate and procedurally fair.

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Podcast 9: Cortney Fisher, Stacey Haynes, and Alison Cares: Procedural Justice Is for Victims Too

This podcast addresses how procedural fairness applies to victims by talking with three scholars who have done research on the subject. Cortney Fisher wrote her dissertation on victim satisfaction. Stacy Haynes and Alison Cares conducted a study on how victims and offenders perceive fairness and view the purpose of punishment. They also worked together on a literature review on restitution and the effect it has on victims’ feelings of satisfaction. The researchers discuss what victims are looking for in their interactions with the justice system, offer some practical tips for judges, and tackle questions like how to consider input from victims while still making sure offenders receive equal justice.

Full Interview

Short Interview

This project was supported by Grant No. 2010-DD-BX-K034 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance to the American Judges Association. Points of view or opinions expressed in the interviews are those of the speakers and do not represent the views of either AJA or the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs.