TOWARD A THEORY OF LEGAL ACTIVITY
Since the creation of the Legal Services Corporation in 1974, only a few researchers have examined the questions raised in this study. 1 However, during the late 1960s and early 1970s, when OEO administered the program, the issue of legal services program activity was explored more extensively. 2
While research on the OEO program is suggestive, its findings can not be applied with confidence to local LSC programs. For one thing, differences in goals and funding mechanisms make it difficult to apply earlier research findings to the present program. During its formative years, the OEO pronounced law reform as its major goal. 3 To encourage local grantees to engage in social reform activity, national OEO officials allocated funding to local programs based on the amount of law reform pursued. 4 In sharp contrast, the LSC has avoided stating explicit program goals and allocates funds to local grantees by formula, based on the number of people in the program's service area living below the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) poverty line. Thus, while national OEO officials may have exerted influence on local grantees through its explicit statement of goals and method of funding, LSC officials are unable to do so.
The geographic scope of the OEO program and the LSC also differs significantly. OEO-funded programs were located primarily in large metropolitan settings. The LSC expanded its coverage to rural America throughout the 1970s. 5
Despite the attention researchers paid to the OEO program, few