Is Litigation More of a Science Than an Art?

Join us October 16 to Learn What’s Involved in Decision-Making, Memory and Persuasion


BASF’s Litigation Section will be hosting its annual Bench Bar Conference on October 16 to bring together judges, academics, and attorneys to discuss research on the science of decision making and persuasion.

The event, entitled “Is Litigation More of a Science Than an Art? Understanding What’s Involved in Decision-Making, Memory and Persuasion,” will be held at the BASF Conference Center on October 16 from 5:00 – 6:30 p.m. with a reception to follow.

Judge Curtis Karnow of the San Francisco Superior Court will be joined in discussion by two professors whose research has particular application to the practice of law and legal decision-making: Robert MacCoun, Professor of Law and Senior Fellow, Freeman Spogli Institute, Stanford University School of Law, and Thomas B. Lewis, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, UCSF School of Medicine and Professor at the Fromm Institute, University of San Francisco. This discussion will be moderated by Danielle Leonard of Altshuler Berzon.

The panelists will discuss scientific research on the psychology of decision-making, with particular focus on how particular cognitive fallacies impact key legal decision-makers, including judges, juries, and counsel. For example, the panel anticipates discussing “hawkish” biases in yourself and opponents in litigation; cognitive biases in jury decision making; and the reality of implicit bias.

San Francisco Superior Court Presiding Judge Cynthia Ming-mei Lee will also deliver opening remarks on the state of the court and Presiding Judge-Elect John K. Stewart will deliver closing remarks.

This event, which offers 1.5 hours of CLE, is designed to give members the opportunity to further their professional development and a unique opportunity to interact with judges and their peers.

Register: Online registration will available at