Visualising Consitutional reform

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Takes a complex systems view of the legal system in Ireland, argues constitutional reform needs to be simulated before undertaking such wild changes.

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Visualising Consitutional reform

  1. 1. VISUALISING CONSTITUTIONAL REFORM Stephen Kinsella, UL
  2. 2. WHAT I’M NOT Lawyer/Smart person.
  3. 3. VISUALISING A COMPLEX SYSTEM
  4. 4. Many heterogenous parts decentralised information & interaction ‘emergent’ properties: ant hills from individual ant behaviour. Legal system is emergent. Implication: you can’t predict where it will go with any accuracy.
  5. 5. WITTGENSTEIN’S LANGUAGE GAME Irreducible language forms, itself an emergent property. Worse again: not only can you not predict evolution of the system, you can’t even reduce it to simple, computable, decisions. Best thing you can do is visualise what you’ve got, simulate small/large changes to that visualisation. Constitutional reform is one such change.
  6. 6. Represent legal system as a graph.
  7. 7. Bommarito et al, (2010) A Mathematical Approach to the Study of the United States Code
  8. 8. NEXT STEPS Put some money into this exercise for Ireland. See what constitutional reform would look like. Then you can infer short term dynamics. Anything else is shooting in the dark.

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