CITAPP Seminar Series talk by Aditi Bhowmick on Big Data and Judicial Decision Making

Date: 19-01-2022

About the January 19th talk: We study judicial in-group bias in Indian criminal courts, collecting data on over 5 million criminal case records from 2010–2018. We exploit quasi-random assignment of cases to judges to examine whether defendant outcomes are affected by assignment to a judge with a similar identity. We estimate tight zero effects of in-group bias based on shared gender, religion, and last name (a proxy for caste). We do find limited in-group bias in some (but not all) settings where identity is particularly salient, though even here the effect sizes are smaller than those in much of the prior literature.

Speaker Bio: Aditi Bhowmick is a graduate of the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University (formally the Woodrow Wilson School). She currently serves as India Director for Development Data Lab, where she is collaborating with Professors Sam Asher and Paul Novosad on building a gender research agenda and leading outreach efforts beyond the research community in India. Prior to this, she has also worked on large-scale evaluations of education and early childhood development programs across Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu with J-PAL South Asia.

Aditi Bhowmick’s talk will be followed by a discussion and Q&A session anchored by Dr Bidisha Chaudhuri.

CITAPP’s Monthly Seminar Series is an attempt to create a forum where researchers across IIITB domains can meet and discuss cutting edge research on the chosen theme of the semester. The Series  hopes to explore a technology or topic for its ramifications in different realms of social activity. In particular, we are interested in understanding the specific kinds of complexity that these domains present for technological innovation and design. 

CITAPP at IIIT Bangalore is an interdisciplinary think-tank set-up to focus on the policy challenges and the organizational demands made by technological innovation. Of particular interest to the Centre is how technological advances, along with institutional changes that harness the legitimacy and the powers of bureaucracies and market, address the needs of underserved communities.