Nebraska Symposium on Motivation

2024 Symposium Banner

71st Annual Nebraska Symposium on Motivation -- Legal Judgment and the Motivation for Justice

18-19 April 2024
Nebraska Union Auditorium

Coordinated by: Richard Wiener, Ph.D., MLS, and Dave Hansen, Ph.D.

This event is free and open to the public and will be available online via webinar.

Click here to register to attend (note: you must register to get the webinar link)

It has become very clear to many who work in the area of Law and Psychology that we currently possess a great deal of knowledge about the psychology of the legal system, including the way in which the behavior of legislatures, judges, jurors, attorneys, litigants, and defendants shapes the outcome of justice. It has also become very clear that the main obstacles to beneficial modifications to the legal system stem from the lack of motivation to seek justice, motivation to change the legal process, and motivation to make use of evidence-based decision-making.

The purpose of this symposium is to examine the antecedents of the motivation for justice, describe how that motivation activates and manifests in various legal institutions (i.e., elections, legislatures, courts, and executive offices), and trace the failure of that motivation to influence legal decision-making. This will include research and commentary about a) where the motivation for justice comes from when people make legal judgments and decisions, b) how the motivation for justice influences legal judgments and decisions, and c) how legal judgments and decisions influence the motivation for justice in positive and negative ways. This topic is paramount at the current time in our history in view of the apparent breakdown of society’s beliefs in our institutions and trust in the democratic process, which has contributed to a system that has increasingly operated from tribalistic impulse rather than from a richer motivation for authentic justice. 

If you are interested in presenting a poster on a related topic during the Thursday Poster Session, please submit an application by March 18th, 2024 using the form linked here.

Speakers will include: 

christian h. bijoux (Georgetown University)

Jack Glaser (University of California, Berkeley)

Mandeep K. Dhami (Middlesex University)

Dan Simon (University of Southern California, Gould School of Law)

Tom Tyler (Yale Law School)

Jennifer K. Robbennolt (University of Illinois, College of Law)

Donna Shestowsky (University of California, Davis, School of Law)

Kees van den Bos (Utrecht University)