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The Use of Research in the Seattle and Jefferson County Desegregation Cases: Connecting Social Science and the Law

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On June 28, 2007, a plurality of the United States Supreme Court held that two public school desegregation plans, which relied in part on racial classifications, violated the Equal Protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. This article provides an overview of the cases and discusses the ways in which examples of social science research were used and interpreted by Justices on both sides of the issue. We also describe some differences in perspective between social scientific and legal traditions and offer insights about connections between these perspectives in this and future work.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: San Francisco State University 2: University of California, Santa Cruz

Publication date: December 1, 2007


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