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Business Organizations Law

Cornell University Law School

Business liability

Publication Year

Articles 1 - 3 of 3

Full-Text Articles in Law

Attitudes Toward Corporate Responsibility: A Psycholegal Perspective, Valerie P. Hans Jan 1990

Attitudes Toward Corporate Responsibility: A Psycholegal Perspective, Valerie P. Hans

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

One of the most striking phenomena in the contemporary legal world is the shift toward holding businesses and corporations responsible for harm. Legal theorists and historians maintain that today business corporations are expected to provide compensation for injuries that in earlier times would have been attributed to individuals or to fate. Furthermore, criminal charges against businesses and business executives are becoming commonplace.

Despite a good deal of legal scholarship on the shift toward holding businesses culpable for harms, psychologists have conducted little systematic research on public views of corporate responsibility. How do people conceptualize the civil liability or criminal responsibility ...


The Jury's Response To Business And Corporate Wrongdoing, Valerie P. Hans Oct 1989

The Jury's Response To Business And Corporate Wrongdoing, Valerie P. Hans

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

Some of the most vociferous criticisms of the jury relate to its performance in cases involving business and corporate wrongdoing. The jury's competence in such cases is assaulted on a variety of fronts. Critics question the jury's factfinding ability in cases with business and corporate parties, and doubt whether lay jurors can understand the often complex and esoteric evidence of business wrongdoing. Others claim that bias and prejudice, rather than evidence, determine jury decisions about businesses and corporations. The presumed biases cut both ways. The generally positive regard in which the public holds business is credited with creating ...


Responses To Corporate Versus Individual Wrongdoing, Valerie P. Hans, M. David Ermann Jun 1989

Responses To Corporate Versus Individual Wrongdoing, Valerie P. Hans, M. David Ermann

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

For many years, researchers assumed that the public was indifferent to corporate wrongdoing, but recent surveys have discovered evidence to the contrary. Taking insights from these data a step further, this study employed an experimental design to examine whether people responded differently to corporate versus individual wrongdoers. We varied the identity of the central actor in a scenario involving harm to workers. Half the respondents were informed that a corporation caused the harm; the remainder were told that an individual did so. Respondents applied a higher standard of responsibility to the corporate actor. For identical actions, the corporation was judged ...