Judging the JAC
Judicial involvement in judicial appointments is valuable. Judges possess unique perspectives on the qualities required for judicial office as well as the needs of the judicial system. Such perspectives should help to shape individual selections as well as the aims, priorities and structures of the selection regime as a whole. This chapter represents the first attempt to identify a broad framework within which to assess judicial influence over appointments in England and Wales. It applies to other jurisdictions in proportion to the degree to which their selection processes and, more significantly, their political and legal cultures resemble those found here. Conduct-shaping and context-shaping are variable and relational, which in turn can make it very difficult to determine the actual levels of influence that judges exercise. The chapter explains how reflecting on the inputs, outputs and throughputs of an appointments regime provides a basic framework for determining when judicial influence becomes too high.