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26 February 2019

A Network Analysis of the Singapore Court of Appeal’s Citations to Precedent

Jerrold Soh

Published on e-First 26 February 2019

Abstract:
This article presents findings from an empirical network analysis of citation practices in Singapore’s highest court. A network of all 987 reported Court of Appeal judgments handed down from 2000 to 2017 is constructed. Network centrality algorithms are used to rank judgments by centrality. Judgments on contract law, particularly on contractual interpretation and terms, emerge as the most central. Based on this, this article argues that more attention can be paid to interpretation per se as a legal skill. More generally, this article establishes a framework for applying network analysis to Singapore jurisprudence on a larger scale.