March 11, 2023

The Stanford Law disaster involving a FedSoc event with Judge Duncan

UPDATE:  The Stanford President and Dean Martinez in the law school have now issued an appropriate apology for this fiasco, including an acknowledgment (unlike in Dean Martinez's letter to the SLS community) that Dean Steinbach's conduct was inappropriate.

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The video online gives a sense of the chaos and heckling which disrupted the event.  F.I.R.E. offers a summary of the events, as well as a transcript of the peculiar and inappropriate remarks of Dean Steinbach, the DEI Associate Dean at the Law School.

Stanford is a private university, so the Law School could, of course, adopt the rule that they will not permit Republican-appointed judges to speak on campus, and they will not permit a student chapter of the Federalist Society.  They do not do that, I assume for a mix of reasons of principle and prudence.  Moreover, they have a free speech policy that specifically prohibits disrupting speakers invited to campus.

SLS Dean Martinez's letter to the community is posted below the fold.  I do not think it is a particularly good response (it is in the "mistakes were made, but we have good intentions" genre), but readers will judge for themselves.  A better response would have been simpler:

On March 9, students disrupted a speech by a federal judge invited by a student group.  This violates law school policies, and a disciplinary investigation has commenced, and students found to have participated in the violation will be subject to the appropriate disciplinary procedures.  We apologize to Judge Duncan for the disruption of the event, and administrative staff will receive training about how to manage situations like this to insure that an invited speaker may address students.

Dean Martinez's actual email in response to these events is below the fold:

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March 11, 2023 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

January 17, 2023

Levit & Rostron's guide to submitting to law reviews...

October 28, 2022

A new "Creative Commons" license that permits users to "remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially"

Some academics are concerned; law professors should feel free to weigh in on the discussion in the comments at the link.

October 28, 2022 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

October 25, 2022

Is US News an "authoritative" ranking of law schools?

I know this question will make readers of this blog laugh, even as they recognize the pernicious influence the rankings have on legal education and the decisions of applicants.   But I was struck when having lunch this past Spring with some talented LLM students from Japan and China that they seemed to assume the answer to the question was "yes."  In a way, that sums up the problem confronted by American legal education. is undoubtedly perceived as authoritative by many students, who lack the knowledge and resources to assess the nonsensical ranking stew (reputation, library resources, expenditures per capita, self-reported employment data and on and on) used by 

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October 25, 2022 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Rankings | Permalink

October 04, 2022

Leading student-edited law reviews issue statement on new requirements for data and code transparency in empirical legal scholarship


(Thanks to Andrew Granato for the pointer.)

October 4, 2022 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Law in Cyberspace, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

September 28, 2022

Florida lawyers take position in court that public university faculty curricula and classroom speech are "government speech," so regulable by state

Those thinking about taking jobs in the Florida public university system will want to watch this case.  If it makes it to SCOTUS, we may find out if Garcetti extends to faculty at public universities; if it does that will be the end of academic freedom at public universities.

September 28, 2022 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

September 27, 2022

Some very odd behavior by student editors at the Iowa Law Review

Lawprof Ramsi Woodcock (Kentucky) reports his experience.  Short version:  he was late turning in the final version of his article, so the Law Review insisted they would publish the earlier version, over his objections!   There are other twists and turns in this saga, but the student editors did not handle the situation properly. They can certainly reject an article that is not revised by the deadline, but they have no right to publish something the author does not want published.

UPDATE:  On Twitter, Professor Kerr (Berkeley) comes to the defense of the student editors.

September 27, 2022 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Student Advice | Permalink

September 06, 2022

Bigelow Fellowship at Chicago now accepting applications

Those interested in law teaching with strong qualifications can apply here.   Bigelow Fellows are fully immersed into the intellectual culture of the Law School and receive excellent mentoring.   The Bigelow is the most powerful credential on the law teaching market, and Bigelows are in demand every year.  Every Bigelow in the last nineteen years has received one or more tenure-track job offers.  You can see a full list of Bigelow alumni here.

September 6, 2022 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

August 23, 2022

Acadmic Freedom Alliance calls for an end to the use of mandatory "diversity" statements in hiring and promotion... a violation of academic freedom.  (Randall Kennedy [Harvard] was one of the drafters of the AFA statement.)

We discussed this issue previously in connection with some related ABA proposals, as well as the recent AALS decision to encourage applicants to submit diversity statements.

August 23, 2022 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

July 19, 2022

Law schools hiring in 2022-23 can announce their plans/needs...