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Modelling systematic communication differences between law and science

Dougan, Paul, Gobet, Fernand and King, Michael (2012) Modelling systematic communication differences between law and science. In: Brooks-Gordon, Belinda and Freeman, Michael, (eds.) Law and Psychology: Current Legal Issues Volume 9. Current Legal Issues,9. Oxford University Press, New York, US. ISBN 0199211396

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Identification Number: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199211395.003.0007


Niklas Luhmann proposed that different social systems, such as law and science, encode information using different binary codes and programmes. A plausible consequence is that communications within those systems - for example law cases for the law system and academic journal articles for the (social) science system - should have not only different surface structures, for example style and convention, but also different semantic structures. However, it is critical to control the input to the two systems, insofar as this should relate as nearly as possible to identical topics. This chapter presents an empirical study aimed at providing some scientific evidence to support Luhmann's theory about social systems. Measurable and statistically reliable differences were observed in the semantic structure between the law and science systems of communication. The terms related to a particular domain had a higher average weight within the network associated with this domain than with the network associated with the other domain.

Item Type: Book Section
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2012 Oxford University Press
Divisions: CPNSS
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
K Law > K Law (General)
Q Science > Q Science (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2019 10:33
Last Modified: 27 May 2021 14:57

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