October 15, 2020

The timing of this year's job market

Without a "meat market" around which schools and candidates coordinate their behavior, the timing is quite various this year.  Some schools are still scheduling initial interviews, while other schools hosted call-backs as early as September.  Some schools have even started extending offers.  This is going to make things more challenging all around; I hope hiring schools will give candidates at least one month to consider an offer.  By the same token, candidates should be timely in letting schools know if they are no longer interested in being considered because they have other offers in hand.


October 15, 2020 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

September 09, 2020

How to hire a strong scholarly faculty (and a sidenote about status anxiety)

As part of the very enjoyable discussion on "The Legal Academy," Orin Kerr (Berkeley) asked me about how a school can hire strong scholarly faculty.  I made a variety of observations related to this topic.   A school must constitute a good hiring committee, meaning one with faculty who are engaged in scholarship and have good judgment about scholarship.   Schools like Florida State and San Diego (two examples I gave) have, historically, done very strong rookie hiring (better than their peers), in part because Deans have invested serious faculty with good judgment with a decisive role in hiring at those schools.   While "objective" metrics (like citations or place of publication) can be useful proxies, there is, as I said, "no substitute for reading" (as long as those reading satisfy the prior desiderata!). 

Finally, there's the question of how to use recommendations from faculty elsewhere (no committee can read everything, so recommendations are often used to figure out which candidates deserve further scrutiny).   Everyone who has done hiring has their own list of reliable and unreliable references, and everyone of course gives different weight to references based on their opinion of the recommender (if they have one).   I gave the example of a recommendation from a professor at San Diego (an expert I respected in the candidate's area) that ultimately led to Texas hiring someone when I was chairing appointments there.  I also gave the example of the Yale recommender who "never met a candidate he didn't love":  such recommendations are useless, of course.  I remarked that my own approach was not to credit or give weight to references from faculty I wouldn't hire, i.e., those I don't respect on the intellectual merits.

Continue reading


September 9, 2020 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Rankings | Permalink

August 31, 2020

I talk with Orin Kerr (Berkeley) on "The Legal Academy"...

...about law school hiring trends, rankings, the effect of COVID on the teaching market, and other topics. (Link now added!)


August 31, 2020 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Faculty News, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Rankings, Student Advice | Permalink

June 02, 2020

Amicus brief from law professors in support of Shmuel Leshem in his tenure dispute with Southern California

The list of signatories and the brief are available here.  (Prior coverage.)

(Thanks to Abe Wickelgren for the pointer.)


June 2, 2020 in Faculty News, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

March 21, 2020

Another online guide to using Zoom...

...from law professor Josh Blackman (South Texas).

(Thanks to Paul Horwitz for the pointer.)


March 21, 2020 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

March 18, 2020

All U.S. law schools have now moved to online instruction...

March 14, 2020

92% of law school have moved to remote teaching due to coronavirus

Blog Emperor Caron has the details.


March 14, 2020 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

March 09, 2020

What is your law school doing in response to the impending coronavirus pandemic?

This is an open thread for law faculty to post about what their schools are doing:  e.g., cancelling classes, "remote" teaching or exams, cancelling conferences, prohibiting faculty work-related travel etc.   Feel free to link to public resources/statements by your schools.  Submit your comment only once, they are moderated, and may take awhile to appear.


March 9, 2020 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Student Advice | Permalink | Comments (4)

February 10, 2020

Who controls a journal: the editorial board or the publisher?

The entire editorial board of the European Law Journal has resigned in a dispute with publisher, Wiley, over who the new editors will be.   Legally, it looks like Wiley can appoint the editors, but the credibility of the journal is now shattered.

(Thanks to Matt Kramer for the pointer.)


February 10, 2020 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

February 06, 2020

The need for standards governing the correction of errors in digital publications

Professor Janet Sinder (Brooklyn) discusses.


February 6, 2020 in Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink