Thursday, September 24, 2015

In Memoriam: Michael J. Zimmer (1946-2015)

A well-known scholar in the labor and employment law fields, he was, at the time of his death, a professor of law at Loyola University, Chicago.  There is a brief memorial notice here, as well as recollections from colleagues and friends.

(Thanks to Bob Condlin for the pointer.)

September 24, 2015 in Memorial Notices | Permalink

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

In praise of R.H. Helmholz

A nice article about my esteemed colleague, the distinguished legal historian.

September 23, 2015 in Faculty News, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Journal of Legal Education...

...has a new website, and articles on-line.

September 22, 2015 in Of Academic Interest | Permalink

New Dean at Tulsa

Monday, September 21, 2015

U.C. Irvine Symposium on Higher Education Access (Michael Simkovic)

U.C. Irvine is hosting a Symposium on Higher Education Access, this Friday, September 25.  

I'm presenting A Value Added Perspective on Higher Education.  Jim Chen is presenting his work on competitive merit scholarships.  Sandy Baum and Eileen O’Leary are presenting research on higher education finance.

Other speakers include: 

Associate Justice Goodwin Liu,  California Supreme Court (Keynote)

Continue reading

September 21, 2015 in Faculty News, Guest Blogger: Michael Simkovic | Permalink

$8 million gift for advocacy at Campbell Law

Their biggest gift ever!

September 21, 2015 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

Legal scholarship that has affected the law


Prof. Jeff Sovern (St. John's) writes:

We often hear Chief Justice Roberts’s famous complaint about law review articles: “Pick up a copy of any law review that you see and the first article is likely to be, you know, the influence of Immanuel Kant on evidentiary approaches in 18th-century Bulgaria, or something, which I'm sure was of great interest to the academic that wrote it, but isn't of much help to the bar.” I’ve been wondering how many law review articles have changed the law.  Given your role, through your blog, as a connector of legal academics, I wondered if you would be interested in inviting people who know of such articles to list them in the comments.  I would limit it to articles written in the last ten or fifteen years on the theory that the Chief Justice was probably not complaining about older scholarship.  I can start the list off with citations my co-author, Dee Pridgen of Wyoming, compiled to articles in our field of consumer law.  Her list consists of Oren Bar-Gill and Elizabeth Warren, Making Credit Safer, 157 U.PA. L. Rev.1 (2008); Kathleen C. Engel and Patricia McCoy, A Tale of Three Markets, 82 Tex. L. Rev. 439 (2003). Kathleen C. Engel and Patricia A. McCoy, A Tale of Three Markets: The Law and Economics of Predatory Lending, 80 Tex. L. Rev. 1255 (2002)—all of which contributed to the Dodd-Frank Act; Oren Bar-Gill, Seduction by Plastic, 98 Nw. U.L. Rev. 1373 (2004)—which led to the Credit CARD Act; and Steven M. Graves and Christopher L. Peterson, Predatory Lending and the Military: The Law and Geography of “Payday” Loan in Military Towns, 66 Ohio St. L.J. 653 (2005)—which brought about the Military Loan Act. The pieces on that list produced statutes, rather than case law, but I would still count them. Of course, it is impossible to show that the changes in the law would not have occurred anyway in the absence of the writings, but perhaps we can take it on faith that the articles helped push things along.

Comments are open for other examples.  (And just for the record, the idea that legal scholarship has to be interesting to the Chief Justice or to lawmakers is silly, though if some is, that's fine too [assuming it's a good influence!].)

September 21, 2015 in Faculty News, Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink | Comments (12)

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Penn Law Review symposium on legal realism and "The New Doctrinalism"... now available.  I haven't read most of the papers at this point, but I can commend both Ed Rock's and Henry Smith's as particularly interesting.  (I was unable to attend the symposium, so I did not hear the papers either.)  My own contribution to the symposium is here.

September 17, 2015 in Jurisprudence, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

"The Death of God and the Death of Morality"

A new draft paper, perhaps of interest to some readers:

Nietzsche famously proclaimed the "death of God," but in so doing it was not God's death that was really notable--Nietzsche assumes that most reflective, modern readers realize that "the belief in the Christian god has become unbelievable” (GS 343)--but the implications of that belief becoming unbelievable, namely, "how much must collapse now that this faith has been undermined," in particular, "the whole of our European morality" (GS 343).  What is the connection between the death of God and the death of morality?

I argue that Nietzsche thinks the death of God will undermine two central aspects of our morality:  its moral egalitarianism, and its belief in moral responsibility and warranted guilt.  I offer an account of how Nietzsche sees the connections, and conclude with some skeptical considerations about whether Nietzsche was right that atheism would, in fact, undermine morality.

A friend on FB, an historian at Harvard, posted the following excerpt from the preceding paper, which leads me to think it might be worth sharing:

Consider the Nietzschean Trolley Problem (apologies for anachronism): a runaway trolley is hurtling down the tracks towards Beethoven, before he has even written the Eroica symphony; by throwing a switch, you can divert the trolley so that it runs down five (or fifty) ordinary people, non-entities (say university professors of law or philosophy) of various stripes (“herd animals” in Nietzschean lingo), and Beethoven is saved. For the anti-egalitarian, this problem is not a problem: one should of course save a human genius at the expense of many mediocrities. To reason that way is, of course, to repudiate moral egalitarianism. Belief in an egalitarian God would thwart that line of reasoning; but absent that belief, what would?

September 17, 2015 in Jurisprudence | Permalink

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Top 40 law faculties in scholarly impact, 2015


Gregory Sisk & colleagues have updated their scholarly impact ratings (last edition), looking at mean and median citations to tenured faculty scholarship for the years 2010-2014 inclusive, using 2015-16 faculty rosters as the benchmark.  (Sisk et al. rank 70 faculties; I print the top 40, below.)  The weighted score represents the sum of the mean citations for the tenured faculty times 2, plus the faculty median.  Where the median is low relative to the immediate competition that's an indicator that a few highly cited faculty are carrying the school; in other cases, where the median is quite high, it's an indicator of more across the boards scholarly output.  By noting age, one can see that some faculties are heavily dependent on their most senior members for their citations.  Ties reflect the normalized weighted scores.

Citations to faculty scholarship is, of course, only one metric of scholarly distinction.  Some schools that experts would reasonably assess as top 20 (like Southern California) underperform by this measure.  Still, the metric is a useful check on uninformed opinions, and tracks rather well the actual scholarly output of different schools.

In the fall, I hope to put together new lists of the most-cited scholars by specialty utilizing the Sisk data.

Detailed Scholarly Impact Ranking of Law Faculties, 2015-16

(based on citations for the period 2010 through 2014)


Law   School

Weighted   Score

Mean,   Median

10   Most Cited (Tenured) Scholars

(* indicates 70 or older in 2015)


Yale University


638,   490

*B.   Ackerman, A. Amar, I. Ayres, J. Balkin, W. Eskridge, D. Kahan, H. Koh, J.   Macey, R. Post, R. Siegel


Harvard   University


520,   344

R.   Fallon, J. Goldsmith, L. Kaplow, L. Lessig, M. Minow, S. Shavell, C.   Sunstein, *L. Tribe, *M. Tushnet, A. Vermeule


University of Chicago


468,   364

D. Baird,   O. Ben-Shahar, T. Ginsburg, B. Leiter, S. Levmore, R. McAdams, M. Nussbaum,   E. Posner, G. Stone, D. Strauss


New York   University


397,   329

R. Barkow, S. Choi, *R. Epstein, B. Friedman,   S. Issacharoff, *A. Miller, G. Miller, R. Pildes, *R. Stewart, J. Waldron


Stanford   University


369,   275

*L. Friedman, *P. Goldstein, *R. Gordon, P.   Karlan, M. Lemley, M. McConnell, M. Polinsky, D. Rhode, D. Sklansky, A. Sykes


University of   California, Irvine


392,   210

D. Burk, J. Chacón, E. Chemerinsky, C. Fisk, B.   Garth, R. Hasen, C. Leslie, C. Menkel-Meadow, A. Reese, G. Shaffer


Columbia   University


348,   249

R. Briffault, *J. Coffee, K. Crenshaw, R. Gilson,   *K. Greenawalt, T. Merrill, *H. Monaghan, *J. Raz, *R. Scott, *P. Strauss


Duke University


312,   286

M. Adler,   J. Boyle, C. Bradley, J. Cox, M. Gulati, L. Helfer, H.J. Powell, A. Rai, S.   Schwarcz, E. Young


Vanderbilt   University


303,   206

L. Bressman, C. Guthrie, N. King, J.   Rossi, E. Rubin, J.B. Ruhl, S. Sherry, C. Slobogin, R. Thomas W.K. Viscusi


University of   California, Berkeley


300,   208

*R. Cooter, S. Davidoff Solomon, D. Farber, *M.   Feeley, I. Haney Lopez, P. Menell, R. Merges, P. Samuelson, J. Yoo, *F. Zimring


University of Pennsylvania


289,   202

T. Baker M. Berman, S. Bibas, W. Bratton, S.   Burbank, J. Fisch, G. Parchomovsky, D. Roberts, P. Robinson, E. Rock, D.   Skeel, C. Yoo


Northwestern   University


277,   202

R. Allen,   B. Black, S. Calabresi, D. Dana, S. Diamond, A.   Koppelman, J. McGinnis, J. Pfander, *M. Redish, D. Rodriguez, D. Schwartz


Cornell   University


273,   202

G.   Alexander, J. Blume, *K. Clermont, M. Dorf, V. Hans, M. Heise, E. Peñalver,   J. Rachlinski, S. Schwab, L. Stout


University of   California, Los Angeles


272,   189

S.   Bainbridge, D. Carbado, K. Crenshaw, J. Kang, R. Korobkin, H. Motomura, N.   Netanel, K. Raustiala, J. Salzman, E. Volokh, A. Winkler


Georgetown   University


239,   158

R. Barnett, J. Cohen, D. Cole, L. Gostin, N.   Katyal, D. Langevoort, D. Luban, L. Solum, R. Tushnet, R. West


University of Michigan,   Ann Arbor


230,   180

R. Avi-Yonah, S. Bagenstos, D. Crane, R.   Eisenberg, S. Gross, J. Litman, C. MacKinnon, A. Pritchard, C. Schneider, B.   Simma


University of Virginia


231,   146

D. Brown, J. Duffy, B. Garrett, J.   Jeffries, D. Laycock, C. Nelson, S. Prakash, F. Schauer, A. Spencer, *G.E.   White


George   Washington University


226,   148

M. Abramowicz, N. Cahn, B. Clark, R. Glicksman,   O. Kerr, W. Kovavic, *R. Pierce, J. Rosen, M. Selmi, D. Solove


University of   Minnesota, Twin Cities


203,   158

J. Carbone, T. Cotter, R.A. Duff, R. Frase, K.   Hickman, C. Hill, B. Karkkainen, A. Klass, H. Kritzer, B. McDonnell, R.   Painter, M. Tonry


University of   Texas, Austin


199,   156

R. Bone, R. Chesney, F. Cross, D. Jinks, *S.   Levinson, T. McGarity, *L. Sager, C. Silver, W. Wagner, *J. Westbrook


George Mason   University


196,   145

D. Bernstein, H. Butler, D. Ginsburg, M. Greve,   B. Kobayashi, N. Lund, A. Mossoff, I. Soomin, J. Wright, T. Zywicki


Washington   University, St. Louis


193,   147

S. Appleton, L. Epstein, P. Joy, P. Kim, D.   Law, S. Legomsky, *D. Mandelker, N. Richards, H. Sale, B. Tamanaha


Boston   University


192,   148

J. Beermann, S. Dogan, J. Fleming, *T. Frankel,   W. Gordon, K. Hylton, G. Lawson, T. Maclin, L. McClain, M. Meurer


University of   California, Davis


191,   137

A. Bhagwat, A. Chander, G. Chin, W. Dodge, A.   Harris, D. Horton, K. Johnson, P. Lee, M. Sunder, D. Ventry, R. Villazor


Case Western   Reserve University


171,   137

J. Adler, C. Burke Robertson, G. Dent, *P.   Gianelli, B. Hill, S. Hoffman, K. McMunigal, L. Mitchell, C. Nard, M. Scharf


University of   Notre Dame


161,   146

R. Alford, A. Bellia, *J. Finnis, N. Garnett, R.   Garnett, M. McKenna, J. Nagle, N. Newton, M. O’Connell, J. Tidmarsh


University of   Illinois, Urbana-Champaign


169,   129

V. Amar, P. Heald, D. Hyman, J. Kesan, K. Lash,   R. Lawless, J. Mazzone, *M. Moore, J. Robbennolt, S. Thomas, R. Wilson


Emory University


161,   138

R. Ahdieh, J. Bailey, M. Dudziak, M. fineman, T.   Holbrook, M. Kang, J. Nash, *M. Perry, R. Schapiro, J. Witte, *B. Woodhouse


Cardozo Law   School/Yeshiva University


154,   134

B. Frischmann, M. Gilles, M. Hamilton, M. Herz,   A. Reinert, M. Rosenfeld, B. Scheck, A. Sebok, A. Stein, S. Sterk, E.   Zelinsky


University of Arizona


160,   121

J. Anaya, D. Bambauer, K. Engel, *R. Glennon, D.   Marcus, T. Massaro, M. Miller, *C. Rose, W. Sjostrom, R. Williams


University of Colorado,   Boulder


154,   129

A. Gruber, M. Hart, P. Huang, S. Moss, *C.   Mueller, H. Norton, P. Schlag, A. Schmitz, P. Weiser, *C. Wilkinson


Ohio State   University


160,   114

M. Alexander, D. Berman, G. Caldeira, M.   Chamallas, S. Cole, R. Colker, J. Dressler, D. Merritt, P. Shane, D. Tokaji


University of North   Carolina, Chapel Hill


150,   131

A. Brophy, J. Conley, V. Flatt, M. Gerhardt, T.   Hazen, M. Jacoby, W. Marshall, R. Mosteller, G. Nichol, M. Papandrea, G.   Polsky, J. Wegner


Brooklyn Law   School


150,   121

W. Araiza, M. Baer, A. Bernstein, D. Brakman   Reiser, I. Capers, M. Garrison, E. Janger, *R. Karmel, E. Schneider, L.   Solan, N. Tebbe, *A. Twerski


Indiana   University, Bloomingon


141,   132

H. Buxbaum, F. Cate, K. Dau-Schmidtz, C. Geyh, M.   Grossberg, W. Henderson, M. Janis, D. Johnsen, L. Lederman, A. Parrish


University of Utah



R. Adler, A. Anghie, P. Cassell, R.   Craig, L. Davies, A. Guiora, F. Hessick, C. Hessick, C. Peterson, *A. Reitze


Fordham   University


145,   118

J. Brudney, N. Davidson, H. Erichson, M.   Flaherty, S. Foster, J. Gordon, B. Green, S. Griffith, C. Huntington, T. Lee,   E. Leib, R. Pearce, B. Zipursky


University of   San Diego


159,   81

*L. Alexander, D. Dripps, V. Fleischer,   O. Lobel, D. McGowan, F. Partnoy, M. Ramsey, M. Rappaport, T. Sichelman, S.   Smith


Florida State   University


140,   115

F. Abbott, K. Alces, R. Atkinson, S. Hsu, S.   Johnson, W. Logan, D. Markell, E. Ryan, M. Seidenfeld, N. Stern, F. Tesón, M.   Utset



Arizona State   University


142,   109

*K. Abbott,   D. Bodansky, R. Clinton, *I. Ellman, A. Fellmeth, J. Hodge, E. Luna, G.   Marchant, *J. Murphy, M. Saks, R. Tsosie


University of   Southern California


142,   109

J. Barnett, R. Brown, S. Estrich, A.   Gross, A. Guzman, G. Hadfield, G. Keating, E. Kleinbard, E. McCaffery, R.   Rasmussen, D. Simon


University of   St. Thomas (Minn.)


147,   99

T. Berg, T. Collet, R. Delahunty, *N. Hamilton,   L. Johnson, J. Nichols, M. Paulsen, G. Sisk, S. Stabile, R. Vischer

September 16, 2015 in Faculty News, Of Academic Interest, Rankings | Permalink