Bengt Lindell, Multi-criteria analysis in legal reasoning, (Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, 2017, XI+227p.),
Bengt Lindell, Professor of Civil and Criminal Procedure, Faculty of Law, Uppsala University, Sweden
Providing an accessible introduction to the application of multi-criteria analysis in law, this book illustrates how simple additive weighing, a well-known method in decision theory, can be used in problem structuring, analysis and decision support for overall assessments and balancing of interests in the context of law.
Through clear illustrations and a variety of concrete examples, this book shows how simple additive weighing can be applied in any situation in which there are one or more objectives, multiple options and multiple decision criteria. Further demonstrating the use of fuzzy logic in conjunction with this method, Bengt Lindell adeptly shows the reader how extra-disciplinary methods have much to contribute in a legal decision-making context. The methods covered in this book help to balance the issues of intuition versus structural analysis, risk and uncertainty, and the merging of probability and utility in the context of law.
Practical and engaging, this book will prove an indispensible guide for academics and scholars across many legal disciplines. Public and private decision-makers will also benefit from its clear and concise approach, affording them new insights into the application of multi-criteria analysis in law.
‘This is a highly original approach to a pressing problem of legal reasoning: how to decide in a context in which many different values and interests need to be considered. The interdisciplinary approach chosen, using decision theory and adapting it to a legal context, provides a fresh perspective on important issues such as balancing of interests and weighting of different legal values. Firmly grounded in Scandinavian discussions of legal reasoning and the international literature on decision theory, it is particularly relevant to administrative legal decisions, but it may also be relevant to judicial decision-making in private or criminal law.’
– Sanne Taekema, Erasmus University Rotterdam, the Netherlands
‘Law is about balancing of interests. How to do this is considered mainly to be a matter of intuition. This book offers a structured method based on decision theory and fuzzy logic. It helps lawyers to balance interests and make choices in complex cases in a systematic way, even when the weighting is based on subjective ratings and opinions differ fundamentally. The method of multi-criteria analysis is explained in a very clear and accessible way and applied to several legal and other cases.’
– Bart van Klink, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Contents: 1. Overall assessments and balancing of interests 2. Multi-criteria analysis 3. Intuition 4. Legal examples of decision-making with SAW 5. Decision-making under uncertainty 6. Evidentiary aspects Index