January 8, 2011
Dear Rules Committee SEC,
I am an undergraduate researcher at Princeton University exploring power dynamics and the effects of power on fairness and equity in FINRA-related arbitrations and mediations. The Dodd-Frank Act has asked the SEC to look into FINRA arbitrations. I am writing my thesis on this type of adjudication under the pre-eminent constitutional scholar, Yale and UPENN law school professor, Kim Scheppele, and sociologist Paul Willis. I examine settlement and arbitration success among customers, looking specifically at differences across income levels, gender and minorities. I am in the process of interviewing a random sample of 65 litigants and their attorneys. I have observed several FINRA related mediations. I would like to assist the SEC in making an unbiased inquiry into FINRA arbitration in any way possible.
If this research aligns with the goals of the SEC, I would appreciate the opportunity to work along-side your office as I gather data. I hope to speak with you soon.