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Professor Timothy Feddersen presents his paper “Convicting the Innocent: The Inferiority of Unanimous Jury Verdicts under Strategic Voting.”

Feddersen presents award-winning paper to Kellogg community


1/22/2002 -

Timothy J. Feddersen , the Wendell Hobbs Professor of Managerial Politics, presented his award-winning paper on unanimous jury votes Jan. 22 at the Kellogg School of Management. Feddersen won the inaugural Stanley Reiter Best Paper Award for “Convicting the Innocent: The Inferiority of Unanimous Jury Verdicts under Strategic Voting.” The award was announced at the school’s annual “Oh Be Joyful” dinner in June, and Feddersen shared his research findings this week in a public reading that was followed by a reception in the Donald P. Jacobs Center.

The award, named for a current Kellogg School professor who embodies research excellence, is given each year for the article judged best of all those published by Kellogg School faculty in the preceding four calendar years. Selection criteria take into account the article’s creativity, craftsmanship and impact on a given discipline.

Feddersen’s paper demonstrates how requiring unanimous jury verdicts can result in a greater chance of convicting an innocent defendant as well as a lower probability of convicting a guilty defendant than other voting rules, such as a simple majority vote.

Robert Magee , associate dean for faculty and research and the Keith I. DeLashmutt Distinguished Professor of Accounting Information and Management, said Feddersen’s paper exemplifies outstanding research in that it applies rigorous analysis to a far-reaching societal issue.

“Very often, research produces unexpected results and shows us that our past assumptions and reasoning were incorrect,” Magee says. “And, once you understand where you were going wrong, you’re amazed that you could have been mistaken for so long. Professor Feddersen’s paper has that effect on just about everyone who reads it.”