Roles of court presidents in the separation of powers

The increasing power of court presidents, particularly in states with less institutionalized judiciaries, has been documented all over the world. We know that judges hold significant competences in judicial selections, careers, and disciplining of judges. They dominate court administration, oftentimes being equipped with strong informal powers that can impact the results of judicial decision-making.
But court presidents execute many other roles. Compared to rank and file judges, they are no ivory towers. They participate on the legislative process, negotiate with executive bodies, they are publicly active, comment on political development, publish in media or hold academic positions. This article steps into the field with a new typology of court presidents’ roles in the separation of powers. Using comparative examples, it discusses how entrenchment of informal powers distorts position of court presidents in separation of powers and shifts the understanding of judicial independence.