Lawyers’ Professional and Political Networks Compared: Core and Periphery

This Article compares networks of relationships among elite lawyers and other advocates found in research conducted over a period of more than thirty years in varying professional and political contexts. One vein of scholarship argues that political networks are hierarchical, with a densely connected core of elites surrounded by more peripheral players. Other research found network structures with empty centers—a “hollow core.” A third group of research found some lawyers in central, mediating roles—that is, hierarchical structures with “go- betweens” in the core. This Article compares these several findings and offers possible explanations for the differences among them.