Four decades of the journal Law and Human Behavior: a content analysis
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Although still relatively young, the journal Law and Human Behavior (LHB) has amassed a publication history of more than 1300 full-length articles over four decades. Yet, no systematic analysis of the journal has been done until now. The current research coded all full-length articles to examine trends over time, predictors of the number of Google Scholar citations, and predictors of whether an article was cited by a court case. The predictors of interest included article organization, research topics, areas of law, areas of psychology, first-author gender, first-author country of institutional affiliation, and samples employed. Results revealed a vast and varied field that has shown marked diversification over the years. First authors have consistently become more diversified in both gender and country of institutional affiliation. Overall, the most common research topics were jury/judicial decision-making and eyewitness/memory, the most common legal connections were to criminal law and mental health law, and the most common psychology connection was to social-cognitive psychology. Research in psychology and law has the potential to impact both academic researchers and the legal system. Articles published in LHB appear to accomplish both.
KeywordsContent analysis Law and Human Behavior Psychology and law history Research trends
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