Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Laws (LLM)

First Advisor

R. L. Liora Salter


The goal is to explore the construction of the Public Inquiry image and its persona via judicial decision-making and legal discourses that are utilized to justify the final product of an inquiry. For instance, while the commissioner is generally equipped with extensive coercive and discretionary powers, there is scarcely any research on why these powers are exercised the way that they are and how (or if) the decisions that are made condition the public image of the inquiry and their ultimate impact on the survival of the institution. Specifically, it will be argued that despite the fact that a judge-commissioner is generally imbued with broad discretionary powers and given (in theory) access to flexible, independent and virtually unrestrained process, the discourses utilized around and inside the inquiry construct and reinforce a specific image of the process (and the commissioner), one that upholds the paradigm of the traditional (adversarial/adjudicative) legal culture while endangering the unique nature of the public inquiry and what it originally was designed to achieve.


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