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The role of career path in the configuration of voting groups and networks in Brazil' Supreme Court

Grant number: 13/08188-9
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: September 01, 2013 - August 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Sociology - Other specific Sociologies
Principal Investigator:Fabiana Luci de Oliveira
Grantee:Fabiana Luci de Oliveira
Host Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The project's overall objective is to discuss the composition of voting groups and networks in the Supreme Court (Supremo Tribunal Federal), focusing on changes in member composition of the court over the past thirteen years, verifying the impact the career path of Justices has had in determining the composition of these groups and in its decision making process. I will analyze ADINs (Direct Actions of Unconstitutionality) decided in the period of 1999 to 2012, which results have divided the court (non-unanimous decisions). I will seek to identify the reasons and consequences of dissent, discussing whether and how the career path of Justices influences the degree of divergence between them. I will also examine the behaviour of Justices who joined the court in the period under study, considering decisions of interest to the government which appointed them, comparing their positions to the ones of other Justices in the court, bringing more data to test in a robust way the argument that the nomination process would entail subservience of the appointed Justice to the appointing government. I will systematically observe if Justices appointed in same governments but with different career paths vote in the same way in these decisions or not. As a secondary objective I will build a database of all non-unanimous decisions of the Supreme Court (ADINs) in this period, contributing to the consolidation of a field of study that is growing in Brazil, providing consistent material for other researchers who wish to study the decision making process in the Supreme Court. The theoretical and methodological approaches that support research contain concepts from theories of decision (attitudinal models, strategic and institutional), group formation and the sociology of professions. The study will make use of quantitative and (combinatorial analysis and logistic regression) and qualitative (content analysis) data analysis techniques. There will also be support from newspapers articles in search of understanding the context of decision-making and the formation of groups - a second derivative product will be the mapping of how segments of the media portrayed the role of the Court in the period under study, allowing public opinion on the court to be included in the model of analysis. (AU)

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
FABIANA LUCI DE OLIVEIRA; DIEGO WERNECK ARGUELHES. O SUPREMO TRIBUNAL FEDERAL E A MUDANÇA CONSTITUCIONAL. Revista Brasileira de Ciências Sociais, v. 36, n. 105, . (18/00395-9, 13/08188-9)

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