Brian Leiter's Law School Reports

Brian Leiter
University of Chicago Law School

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Monday, July 16, 2012

Top Law Faculties in Terms of Scholarly Impact, 2007 through 2011

Gregory Sisk (St. Thomas-Minnesota) and his colleagues in the law library there have prepared a new scholarly impact study, using the methodology of the 2010 study, but this time Professor Sisk and his colleagues did all the real work, and I acted only as a 'consultant' (looking over faculty lists, flagging suspicious results that should be double-checked and the like).

Professor Sisk and his team at St. Thomas followed the protocols I have used for years, including treating tenure-stream status as the benchmark for inclusion (the one exception in the past being Derrick Bell, who was technically a recurring visiting professor at NYU, but whom we counted for NYU).  This leads to some odd inclusions and exclusions, alas:  so, e.g., two of the ten most-cited faculty at Stanford Law School hold full-time jobs elsewhere for 2012-13 (Larry Kramer as head of the Hewlett Foundation and Kathleen Sullivan as a name partner of Quinn Emmanuel in New York no less), but since they are still technically tenured members of the Stanford faculty and do some teaching (as best we can gauge), they are counted.  Conversely, Richard Epstein, although he teaches at Chicago every Spring Quarter, no longer counts for Chicago since he is technically emeritus.  

UC Irvine has expanded its faculty a good bit since the 2010 study, and is probably around half its full strength.  Professor Sisk and colleagues explain in their essay how they chose to handle the mean impact ranking for Irvine this year, given Chemerinsky's very high citation count due to his influential treatises and texts; their approach makes sense to me.  [UPDATE:  Rick Hasen [UC Irvine] quotes the relevnat bit about the Irvine ranking.]

Professor Sisk and colleagues include all the appropriate caveats in their write-up.  Mean scholarly impact is one kind of measure of academic distinction of a faculty; to the extent that school reputations depend more on the very best faculty, rather than the mean impact, then schools like Virginia, Georgetown, Texas, and Southern Cal are underranked, as they probably would be deemed to be in a survey of scholarly experts.  Still, mean impact does also provide a check on casual assumptions about faculty quality, and constitutes a useful data point for schools trying to assess the performance of their faculty and for students particularly interetsed in the scholarly visibility of the law schools they are considering.

Here are the "top 25" in scholarly impact, with the ten most-cited faculty listed in parentheses (an * indicates a faculty member 70 or older in 2012), followed by the rank in the scholarly impact study for 2005-2009; below the fold is a list of the top 50 schools.

1.  Yale University (Bruce Ackerman, Akhil Amar, Ian Ayres, Jack Balkin, William Eskridge, Dan Kahan, Jonathan Macey, Robert Post, Judith Resnik, Reva Siegel) (1)

2.  Harvard University (Lucian Bebchuk, Richard Fallon, Jack Goldsmith, Louis Kaplow, Lawrence Lessig, Martha Minow, Steven Shavell, *Laurence Tribe, Mark Tushnet, Adrian Vermeule) (2)

3.  University of Chicago (Douglas Baird, Tom Ginsburg, Brian Leiter, Saul Levmore, Richard McAdams, Martha Nussbaum, Eric Posner, Geoffrey Stone, David Strauss, David Weisbach) (3)

4.  Stanford University (*Lawrence Friedman, Ronald Gilson [part-time], Paul Goldstein, *Robert W. Gordon, Pamela Karlan, Larry Kramer [part-time], Mark Lemley, Michael McConnell, Deborah Rhode, Kathleen Sullivan [part-time]) (4)

5.  New York University (Rochelle Dreyfuss, *Ronald Dworkin [part-time], Richard Epstein, Barry Friedman, Samuel Issacharoff, *Arthur Miller, Geoffrey Miller, Richard Pildes, *Richard Stewart, Jeremy Waldron [part-time]) (5)

6.  Columbia University (John Coffee, *George Fletcher, Ronald Gilson [part-time], Jane Ginsburg, *Kent Greenawalt, Thomas Merrill, *Henry Monaghan, *Joseph Raz [part-time], Robert Scott, William Simon) (6)

7.  University of California, Irvine (Dan Burk, Erwin Chemerinsky, Catherine Fisk, Bryant Garth, Richard Hasen, Christopher Leslie, Elizabeth Loftus, Carrie Menkel-Meadow, R. Anthony Reese, Christopher Tomlins) (9)

8.  Vanderbilt University (Margaret Blair, Lisa Bressman, Chris Guthrie, Nancy King, Edward Rubin, J.B. Ruhl, Suzanna Sherry, Christopher Slobogin, Randall Thomas, W. Kip Viscusi) (10)

9.  Cornell University (Gregory Alexander, Kevin Clermont, Michael Dorf, Theodore Eisenberg, Valerie Hans, Michael Heise, Robert Hillman, Jeffrey Rachlinski, Stewart Schwab, Lynn Stout) (11)

10. University of California, Berkeley (*Jesse Choper, Robert Cooter, *Melvin Eisenberg, Daniel Farber, Andrew Guzman, Peter Menell, Robert Merges, Pamela Samuelson, John Yoo, *Franklin Zimring) (7)

11.  Duke University (James Boyle, Curtis Bradley, *Paul Carrington, James Cox, G. Mitu Gulati, Laurence Helfer, Arti Rai, James Salzman, Steven Schwarcz, Ernest Young) (11)

11.  University of Pennsylvania (Stephanos Bibas, William Wilson Bratton, Stephen Burbank, Jill Fisch, Gideon Parchomovsky [part-time], Dorothy Roberts, Paul Robinson, Edward Rock, David Skeel, Christopher Yoo) (14) 

13.  Northwestern University (Ronald Allen, Bernard Black, Steven Calabresi, *Anthony D’Amato, David Dana, Shari Seidman Diamond, Andrew Koppelman, John McGinnis, James Pfander, Martin Redish) (8)

14. University of California, Los Angeles (Stephen Bainbridge, Devon Carbado, Kimberle Crenshaw [part-time], Jerry Kang, Russell Korobkin, Lynn LoPucki, Hiroshi Motomura, Neil Netanel, Kal Raustiala, Eugene Volokh) (15)

15.  University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (Samuel Bagenstos, Steven Croley, Rebecca Eisenberg, Samuel Gross, *James Krier, Jessica Litman, Catharine MacKinnon, Adam C. Pritchard, *Margaret Jane Radin, *James J. White) (11)

16.  George Washington University (Naomi Cahn, Lawrence Cunningham, Orin Kerr, William Kovacic, Sean Murphy, Richard Pierce, Jr., Jeffrey Rosen, Michael Selmi, Dinah Shelton, Daniel Solove) (18)

16.  University of Virginia (John Duffy, Brandon Garrett, John Jeffries, *Edmund Kitch, Douglas Laycock, Caleb Nelson, Saikrishna Prakash, James Ryan, Frederick Schauer, *G. Edward White) (16)

18.  Georgetown University (T. Alexander Aleinikoff, Randy Barnett, Julie Cohen, David Cole, Lawrence Gostin, Neal Katyal [part-time], Donald Langevoort, David Luban, Lawrence Solum, Robert Thompson) (20)

19.  University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (Thomas Cotter, R.A. Duff [part-time], Kristin Hickman, Claire Hill, Bradley Karkkainen, Herbert Kritzer, Brett McDonnell, Francesco Parisi, Michael Tonry, David Weissbrodt) (18)

19.  University of Texas, Austin (Mitchell Berman, Robert Bone, Robert Chesney, Frank Cross, Derek Jinks, *Sanford Levinson, Thomas McGarity, *Lawrence Sager, Wendy Wagner, Jay Westbrook) (17)

21.  Boston University (George Annas, Jack Beermann, Stacy Dogan, *Tamar Frankel, Wendy Gordon, Keith Hylton, Gary Lawson, Tracy Maclin, Linda McClain, Michael Meurer) (28)

21.  George Mason University (David Bernstein, Henry Butler, Eric Claeys, Michael Greve, Bruce Kobayashi, Nelson Lund, Adam Mossoff, Timothy Muris, Ilya Somin, Todd Zywicki) (28)

23. University of Califiornia, Davis (Vikram Amar, Alan Brownstein, Anupam Chander, Gabriel “Jack” Chin, Angela Harris, Edward Imwinkelried, Kevin Johnson, Albert Lin, Madhavi Sunder, Dennis Ventry)
(23)

24.  Cardozo Law School/Yeshiva University (Brett Frischmann, Myriam Gilles, Marci Hamilton, Justin Hughes, Michel Rosenfeld, Barry Scheck, Anthony Sebok, Alex Stein, Stewart Sterk, Edward Zelinsky) (26)

24.  University of Southern California (Lee Epstein, Susan Estrich, Elizabeth Garrett, Gillian Hadfield, Ehud Kamar, Edward McCaffery, Mathew McCubbins, Robert Rasmussen, Nancy Staudt, *Christopher Stone) (32)

And here's the rest of the top 50, by school name:

26.    Emory University

26.    Washington University, St. Louis

28.    University of Colorado, Boulder

28.    University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

30.    Ohio State University

30.    University of St. Thomas (Minnesota)

30.    Washington & Lee University

33.    Florida State University

33.    Hofstra University

33.    Indiana University, Bloomington

33.    University of Arizona   

33.    University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

38.    Case Western Reserve University

38.    University of California, Hastings

38.    University of Notre Dame

41.    Brooklyn Law School

41.    College of William & Mary

43.    Fordham University

43.    University of Marlyand, Baltimore

45.    University of Houston

45.    University of Nevada, Las Vegas

47.    American University

47.    University of Alabama

47.    University of Iowa

47.    University of Pittsburgh

47.    University of Utah

Again, the complete rankings are here and the full explanation of the study is here.

http://leiterlawschool.typepad.com/leiter/2012/07/top-law-faculties-in-terms-of-scholarly-impact-2007-through-2011-1.html

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