Take Action

Home | Faculty & Research Overview | Research

Research Details

Multitasking, Multi-Armed Bandits, and the Italian Judiciary, Manufacturing & Service Operations Management

Abstract

We model how a judge schedules cases as a multiarmed bandit problem. The model indicates that a first-in- first-out (FIFO) scheduling policy is optimal when the case completion hazard rate function is monotonic. But there are two ways to implement FIFO in this context: at the hearing level or at the case level. Our model indicates that the former policy, prioritizing the oldest hearing, is optimal when the case completion hazard rate function decreases, and the latter policy, prioritizing the oldest case, is optimal when the case completion hazard rate function increases. This result convinced six judges of the Roman Labor Court of Appeals—a court that exhibits increasing hazard rates—to switch from hearing-level FIFO to case-level FIFO. Tracking these judges for eight years, we estimate that our intervention decreased the average case duration by 12% and the probability of of a decision being appealed to the Italian supreme court by 3.8%, relative to a 44-judge control sample.

Type

Article

Author(s)

Robert Bray, Nicola Persico, Decio Coviello, Andrea Ichino

Date Published

2016

Citations

Bray, Robert, Nicola Persico, Decio Coviello, and Andrea Ichino. 2016. Multitasking, Multi-Armed Bandits, and the Italian Judiciary. Manufacturing & Service Operations Management. 18(4): 545-58.

KELLOGG INSIGHT

Explore leading research and ideas

Find articles, podcast episodes, and videos that spark ideas in lifelong learners, and inspire those looking to advance in their careers.
learn more

COURSE CATALOG

Review Courses & Schedules

Access information about specific courses and their schedules by viewing the interactive course scheduler tool.
LEARN MORE

DEGREE PROGRAMS

Discover the path to your goals

Whether you choose our Full-Time, Part-Time or Executive MBA program, you’ll enjoy the same unparalleled education, exceptional faculty and distinctive culture.
learn more

Take Action