Overruled : the legalistic and managerial models of administrative adjudications
Wertkin, Jeffrey Adam.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Georgetown University, 2008.; Includes bibliographical references. Federal administrative agencies adjudicate a wide variety of disputes for a diverse set of entities. Although each agency has developed its own processes for adjudicating claims, the conventional wisdom is to divide all administrative adjudications into two broad categories: "formal" and "informal" adjudication. These categories obscure more than they clarify because they fail to account for critical process differences across administrative agencies. The lack of a coherent typology of administrative adjudications presents a significant obstacle to rigorous academic study of this subject.; This dissertation introduces the Legalistic model and the Managerial model of agency adjudications. The Legalistic model is defined by its three central features: process-oriented participation, juridical decisionmakers, and adjudicator independence. The Managerial model is defined by three competing features: result-oriented participation, expert decisionmakers, and adjudicator accountability. Because many federal agencies draw from both models when structuring their adjudications, this dissertation sets out the parameters for a spectrum of administrative adjudications and identifies a methodology for giving each agency a "Judicialization Score" and placing the agency on the Legalistic/Managerial spectrum.; Empirical data on adjudications from two paired sets of federal agencies is used to test the conventional wisdom that Legalistic agencies will, all other things being equal, perform better than Managerial agencies. Three agency performance measures - the appeal measure, the affirmance measure and the processing measure - serve as a basis for the analysis.; This dissertation reaches three main conclusions. First, the Managerial model provides a principled and coherent alternative to the Legalistic model for structuring agency adjudications. Second, contrary to the conventional wisdom, Legalistic agencies do not always perform better than Managerial agencies. Third, the Managerial model is more appropriate for certain agencies, while the Legalistic model is more appropriate for others. These conclusions provide a foundation for future empirical study to refine the nature of the relationship between agency performance and the two basic models of administrative adjudication.
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