Thursday, May 25, 2017

The ongoing investigation into the murder of Dan Markel and the involvement of his ex-inlaws

The Adelsons are still under investigation, but still no formal charges.  We may find out in July who is paying the legal bills for the go-between between the accused killers-for-hire and the Adelson family; the state clearly suspects it is the Adelsons.

May 25, 2017 in Faculty News | Permalink

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

UC Irvine's founding Dean Erwin Chemerinsky to become new Dean at Berkeley

Here's a nice reflection on his accomplishments at Irvine from his colleague Rick Hasen.  And here's the announcement from Berkeley's Interim Provost:

I am very pleased to announce that Erwin Chemerinsky, current and founding Dean of the UC Irvine School of Law, has been appointed to be the next Dean of the UC Berkeley School of Law. He will begin his five-year term on July 1st.

 

One of the nation’s foremost scholars of constitutional law and federal civil procedure, Dean Chemerinsky is also a skilled administrator who, in less than a decade, built UCI Law from its founding into an institution whose faculty rank among the top in the country in scholarly impact, and whose student body admissions qualifications are comparable with the nation’s best law schools. Over the course of nine years, Dean Chemerinsky has been a central figure in the creation of UCI Law’s experiential learning-focused teaching philosophy, as well as in its highly successful faculty recruitment, curriculum development, fundraising, and strategic planning efforts.

 

As a professor and legal scholar, Dean Chemerinsky prizes public service and embodies the role of a public intellectual. He is the author of ten books and more than 200 law review articles, a weekly column for the Orange County Register, monthly columns for the ABA Journal and the Daily Journal, and regular op-eds in newspapers across the country. He frequently argues appellate cases, including in the United States Supreme Court. Dean Chemerinsky’s support for public service at UCI Law has placed the institution among the very top law schools in terms of number of federal clerkships, graduates in government and public interest jobs, and community service contribution. In January 2017, National Jurist magazine named him the most influential person in legal education in the United States.

 

Dean Chemerinsky graduated from Northwestern University in 1975, and received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 1978. Prior to assuming his deanship at Irvine, he was a professor at Duke Law School and the University of Southern California Law School.

 

Dean Chemerinsky’s appointment comes at the end of a thorough search process, and I would like to extend my thanks to search committee chair Dean Henry Brady, the entire search committee, and everyone in the extended Berkeley Law community who provided feedback on the next dean. I would like to also extend particular thanks to Berkeley Law Interim Dean Melissa Murray, who took the reins at a difficult time and has provided steadfast leadership over the course of the past year.

 

Dean Chemerinsky is an acclaimed researcher, gifted teacher, and accomplished administrator, and I believe he will be a phenomenal leader for our law school, someone who will ensure that Berkeley Law remains not only a powerhouse of legal scholarship and training, but also a community built on mutual respect and inclusion.

 

Please join me in welcoming Erwin Chemerinsky to our campus.

 

Sincerely,

Carol Christ

 

Congratulations to Berkeley on a major catch for their Deanship!

UPDATE:  Berkeley's news release about the appointment.

May 17, 2017 in Faculty News, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Penn Law (& Political Science) Professor Beth Simmons elected to the American Philosophical Society

A full list of newly elected members is here.

May 13, 2017 in Faculty News | Permalink

Monday, May 8, 2017

Former Law Dean Bard and U of Cincinnati settle lawsuit...

...on terms that look to me quite favorable to Professor Bard and which vindicate her position.

May 8, 2017 in Faculty News | Permalink

Sunday, May 7, 2017

What is the most productive way to use a sabbatical? (Michael Simkovic)

Every 6 to 7 years, some professors are offered one semester or one year without teaching or administrative duties.  Some use the opportunity to start an ambitious research project, like a book.  Others upgrade their skills by taking courses toward another advanced degree.  Some work in government or for a large corporation, gaining new insights into their areas of interest.  Still others visit another institution, for example where important research collaborators or resources are located.

Since sabbaticals are rare events—perhaps occurring 4 times in a career or less—any individual faculty member will have relatively limited personal experience to draw upon and will instead rely on the collective wisdom of his or her peers.

What do you think are some of the best ways to spend a sabbatical and why? 

Comments are moderated.  Please provide your real name.  

May 7, 2017 in Guest Blogger: Michael Simkovic, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink | Comments (6)

Friday, May 5, 2017

Law school transfer market 2016

Striking data.  A lot, but not all, of this is motivated by attempts to game the USNEWS rankings.

May 5, 2017 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Rankings | Permalink

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Top corporate and securities articles for 2016

Robert Thompson (Georgetown) kindly shared the 2016 results (this is the 25th year they've been running these surveys about leading articles):

The Top 10 Corporate and Securities Articles of 2016

 

The Corporate Practice Commentator is pleased to announce the results of its twenty-third annual poll to select the ten best corporate and securities articles.  Teachers in corporate and securities law were asked to select the best corporate and securities articles from a list of articles published and indexed in legal journals during 2016.  More than 490 articles were on this year’s list.  Because of the vagaries of publication, indexing, and mailing, some articles published in 2016 have a 2015 date, and not all articles containing a 2016 date were published and indexed in time to be included in this year’s list. 

The articles, listed in alphabetical order of the initial author, are:

 

Baker, Lynn A., Michael A. Perino and Charles Silver. Is the Price Right? An Empirical Study of Fee-setting in Securities Class Actions. 115 Colum. L. Rev. 1371-1452 (2015).

 

Cain, Matthew D., Jill E. Fisch, Sean J. Griffith & Steven Davidoff Solomon. How Corporate Governance is Made: The Case of the Golden Leash. 164 U. Pa. L. Rev. 649-702 (2016).

 

Catan, Emiliano M. and Marcel Kahan. The Law and Finance of Antitakeover Statutes. 68 Stan. L. Rev. 629-680 (2016).

 

Cremers, K.J Martijn and Simone M. Sepe. The Shareholder Value of Empowered Boards. 68 Stan. L. Rev. 67-148 (2016).

 

Elhauge, Einer. Horizontal Shareholding. 129 Harv. L. Rev. 1267-1317 (2016).

 

Fox, Merritt B., Lawrence R. Glosten and Gabriel V. Rauterberg. The New Stock Market: Sense and Nonsense. 65 Duke L.J. 191-277 (2015).

 

Goshen, Zohar and Assaf Hamdani. Corporate Control and Idiosyncratic Vision. 125 Yale L.J. 560-619 (2016).

 

Korsmo, Charles R. and Minor Myers. Appraisal Arbitrage and the Future of Public Company M&A. 92 Wash. U. L. Rev. 1551-1615 (2015).

 

Talley, Eric L. Corporate Inversions and the Unbundling of Regulatory Competition. 101 Va. L. Rev. 1649-1751 (2015).

 

Thompson, Robert B. Anti-Primacy: Sharing Power in American Corporations. 71 Bus. Law. 381-425 (2016).

May 2, 2017 in Faculty News, Rankings | Permalink

Friday, April 28, 2017

Four law professors win Carnegie fellowships in 2017 (Michael Simkovic)

 Winners of Carnegie Fellowships for 2017 include:

  • Katerina Linos (U.C. Berkeley)

  • Polly Price (Emory)

  • Emily Ryo (USC)
  • Mila Versteeg (University of Virginia)

The Andrew Carnegie Fellows Program provides fellowships advancing research in the social sciences and humanities.  35 winners are selected from among hundreds of candidates.

April 28, 2017 in Faculty News, Guest Blogger: Michael Simkovic | Permalink

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Ignorant bloviating about Whittier

I could not agree more with Northwestern Dean Dan Rodriguez:

Whittier's sudden closing is obviously a tough thing for current students and faculty.  Perhaps the decision will be unraveled in the face of public pressure or via littigation.  Yet there seems precious little basis to jump into a matter whose complex issues are essentially private, despite the efforts of many in and around the school to make this into a public spectacle.  Perhaps bloggers should neither aid nor abet these efforts.

The hubris of the unknowing. 

Sometimes Stephen Diamond (Santa Clara) has been a voice of reason amidst the mindless blather about law schools in most of cyberspace (and I have linked to him on a number of occasions over the years), but here he has completely missed the boat:  the general legal market has been improving, true, but it is hardly mysterious why an institution would close a law school where far fewer than half the graduates even pass the bar.  Diamond just politely ignores all the relevant facts about how this school's graduates have been faring, and, of course, is ignorant of the actual finances of the school.

But far more egregious is the presumptuous intervention of Robert Anderson, Associate Professor of Law at Pepperdine.  Faculty members at Whittier are going to lose their jobs, and some may never work again as law teachers or work again at all.  Yet Anderson has the audacity to scold them for not having taken an early retirement in the financial interest of the school.   Seriously?  Does Prof. Anderson pay the bills for any members of that faculty, does he know about their college-age children or their elderly parents or their chronic medical conditions that require a salary and a health insurance plan?  Does he know that a job is not just a paycheck for many people (maybe not Robert Anderson), but a focal point of purpose and meaning in a life?  Does he know that many did take early retirement a few years ago, and that others might have quite reasonably believed that the school's fortunes, now that both its faculty and student body were smaller, would rebound?

I'm sure Anderson doesn't know any of these things, he's just another blogging blowhard who has decided to use someone else's misery as an opportunity to attract some attention to himself.  Anderson is guilty of far worse than unknowing hubris.

UPDATE:  Some choice quotes from Prof. Anderson's posts:

"The reason Whittier is closing is because of intransigent, highly paid, unproductive law professors hang around for decades even when they haven't published anything or updated their courses since they were doing the Macarena."

 

"The unfortunate truth of this story [about Whitter] is that none of this needed to happen..... The number of retirement-age faculty was (and is) enormous, likely larger than it has ever been. If faculties had looked beyond their own personal financial self interest they could have easily contracted to meet the market demand and avoided the disastrous effects that have afflicted law students and now law schools. Sadly, the very faculty members whose institution provided them an outrageously rewarding career over many decades seemed the least likely to 'pay it forward' by helping to reduce expenses....Thus, the story of Whittier is a story of generational wealth shifting that is seen throughout tuition dependent law schools, and indeed throughout our country."

April 27, 2017 in Law in Cyberspace, Law Professors Saying Dumb Things, Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau may monitor Student Loan Servicers more closely (Michael Simkovic)

Kathleen Engel (Suffolk), Jonathan Glater (U.C. Irvine), and 13 more legal scholars and economists who study higher education and consumer finance have submitted a comment letter supporting a recent proposal by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to monitor student loan servicers more closely.  The scholars have also suggested that anonymized versions of the resulting data should be shared with researchers who can help analyze it.

Although the federal government originates and holds most student loans, it contracts with non-profits, state agencies, and private lenders to service those loans--that is, to interact with borrowers, send statements, and collect payments. The scholars expressed concerns that some servicers might not be adequately informing borrowers of the various repayment plans available to them, and could thereby be driving up defaults or financing costs for borrowers. 

April 26, 2017 in Guest Blogger: Michael Simkovic, Of Academic Interest | Permalink