Institutionalist Approaches to the Study of Constitutional Law

A fair case can be made that the vast majority of research in public law takes an institutional approach and that most public law scholars are institutionalists.  With the exception of judicial biography, research in public law is almost always about whether some legal or institution matters.  We study the influence of different ways of administering environmental laws, the impact of different ways of constituting judicial panels, and how different judicial traditions influence how constitutional free speech protections are interpreted.  Moreover, almost every student of law and courts thinks some institutions matter.  Disputes in the field are often more often about the impact of particular features of a legal system rather than over whether any distinctive element of law and legal systems influence the functioning of a legal order.