September 02, 2021

20 Most-Cited International Law & Security Faculty in the U.S., 2016-2020

Based on the latest Sisk data, here are the twenty most-cited law faculty in international law & security in the U.S. for the period 2016-2020 (inclusive) (remember that the data was collected in late May/early June of 2021, and that the pre-2021 database did expand a bit since then).  Numbers are rounded to the nearest ten.    Faculty for whom roughly 75% or more of their citations (based on a sample) are in this area are listed; others with less than 75% of their citations in this field (but still a plurality) are listed in the category of "other highly cited scholars who work partly in this area."

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September 2, 2021 in Rankings | Permalink

August 30, 2021

10 Most-Cited Commercial Law Scholars in the U.S., 2016-2020

Based on the latest Sisk data, here are the ten most-cited law faculty in commercial law (including contracts and bankruptcy) in the U.S. for the period 2016-2020 (inclusive) (remember that the data was collected in late May/early June of 2021, and that the pre-2021 database did expand a bit since then).  Numbers are rounded to the nearest ten.    Faculty for whom roughly 75% or more of their citations (based on a sample) are in this area are listed; others with less than 75% of their citations in this field (but still a plurality) are listed in the category of "other highly cited scholars who work partly in this area."

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August 30, 2021 in Rankings | Permalink

August 27, 2021

10 Most-Cited Tax Scholars in the U.S., 2016-2020

Based on the latest Sisk data, here are the ten most-cited tax professors in the U.S. for the period 2016-2020 (inclusive) (remember that the data was collected in late May/early June of 2021, and that the pre-2021 database did expand a bit since then).  Numbers are rounded to the nearest ten.    Faculty for whom roughly 75% or more of their citations (based on a sample) are in this area are listed; others with less than 75% of their citations in this field (but still a plurality) are listed in the category of "other highly cited scholars who work partly in this area."

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August 27, 2021 in Rankings | Permalink

August 26, 2021

10 Most-Cited Law Faculty in the U.S., 2016-2020

Based on the latest Sisk data, here are the ten most-cited active law professors in the U.S. for the period 2016-2020 (inclusive) (remember that the data was collected in late May/early June of 2021, and that the pre-2021 database did expand a bit since then).  Numbers are rounded to the nearest ten.  (Law professors not teaching in 2021-22--e.g.,those who are now retired, in government service, etc.--are not included.)

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August 26, 2021 in Rankings | Permalink

August 24, 2021

Top 50 law faculties in scholarly impact, 2021

Professor Greg Sisk & colleagues at the University of St. Thomas have updated their scholarly impact rankings (last edition), looking at mean and median citations to tenured faculty scholarship for the years 2016-2020 inclusive, using fall 2021 faculty rosters as the benchmark (so, e.g., faculty on indefinite leave in government service are not counted).  (Sisk et al. studied 99 faculties and ranked 70; I print the top 50, 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 impact.  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.

The citation counts were done in late May/early June of this year in the Westlaw law journals database as follows:  TE(Brian /2 Leiter) and date (aft 2015) and date (bef 2021).  "TE" limited the results to the body of the text, thus eliminating references to names in acknowledgments.  Although the searches were done in late spring/early summer, it's clear the pre-2021 database expanded slightly after then .  Across whole schools this won't matter, since the database was relatively stable during the window when the data was collected.   Professor Sisk & colleagues this year took extra steps to include authors in et al. cites (the details are in their article).

Citations to faculty scholarship in law journals are, of course, only one metric of scholarly distinction and accomplishment (for limitations of the measure, see the discussion in the Sisk article).  Still, it is a useful check on uninformed opinions, and tracks rather well the actual scholarly output of different schools.  Do remember that citation counts vary by field, which is why the ten most-cited faculty at each school is dominated by faculty in fields like constitutional and public law, corporate law, criminal law & procedure, law & economics, and intellectual property.

Over the next few months, I will post new lists of the most-cited scholars by specialty utilizing the Sisk data.

Results for the top 50 below the fold:

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August 24, 2021 in Rankings | Permalink

August 20, 2021

US News is *not* going to produce its own scholarly impact rankings using HeinOnLine

A recent article made me realize that it is not generally known that USNews.com has decided not to try to produce its own scholarly impact ranking, which will (happily) leave the field to Professor Gregory Sisk and colleagues at the University of St. Thomas (Minnesota) (their new study should be out next week).   Prior iterations of the Sisk study have already had a significant influence on faculty hiring, including at the University of Virginia--but more on that next week.


August 20, 2021 in Rankings | Permalink

August 18, 2021

Ten lateral faculty moves that made law professors take notice during 2020-21

Based on my in-box and conversations with others, these were the ten moves that transpired this year that were thought to be the biggest hiring coups (I omit any lateral moves that won't officially happen until 2022):

 

*Shyamkrishna Balganesh (intellectual property, private law theory) from the University of Pennsylvania to Columbia University (effective January 2021).

 

*Curtis A. Bradley (international law, foreign affairs law, federal courts) from Duke University to the University of Chicago.

 

*Jennifer Chacon (immimgration law, constitutional law, criminal law & procedure) from the University of California, Los Angeles to the University of California, Berkeley.

 

*Danielle Citron (privacy, civil rights, freedom of expression, Internet law) from Boston University to the University of Virginia (effective January 2021).

 

*Robin Kundis Craig (environmental law, water law) from the University of Utah to the University of Southern California.

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August 18, 2021 in Faculty News, Rankings | Permalink

June 03, 2021

Is the age bias in law school hiring a thing of the past?

In my other academic field, philosophy, it is quite common (indeed probably the norm) for faculty to make lateral moves later in their careers, rather than earlier:  faculty in their 50s and 60s frequently take tenured positions at peer or stronger departments.  When I started in law teaching in the early 1990s, this was very clearly not the case:  most lateral moves occurred 5-15 years into a teaching career, with lateral moves by faculty in their 50s, let alone 60s, almost unheard of, except for administrative appointments.  Yet just in the last couple of years, we've seen multiple lateral moves to peer or stronger schools by faculty age 55 and older.  For example:

Lateral faculty moving in their late 50s:  Curtis Bradley from Duke to Chicago; Robin Kundis Craig from Utah to Southern California; Mitu Gulati from Duke to Virginia; Ran Hirschl from Toronto to Texas; Nancy Kim from Cal Western to Chicago-Kent; Kimberly Krawiec from Duke to Virginia.

Lateral faculty moving in their 60s or older:   Naomi Cahn from George Washington to Virginia; Herbert Hovenkamp from Iowa to Penn; Lawrence Solum from Georgetown to Virginia; Gerald Torres from Cornell to Yale.

I may have missed some from the last two years that are also in these brackets, but this is fairly representative.

What explains this change in hiring practices?  I have a couple of hypotheses:

1.  As academic law as an interdisciplinary and scholarly field has matured, there is more appreciation for cumulative scholarly achievement over the long haul, with the result that more faculty with sustained achievement over decades are finding themselves in demand.

2.  The scholarly impact rankings that I started and Greg Sisk and colleagues at St. Thomas have continued--and which US News.com will now produce (and eventually incorporate into their rankings, I predict)--have probably enhanced the value of adding senior faculty with substantial scholarly profiles to a law faculty.  It may just be a coincidence that, for example, Virginia, which underperformed in the various impact studies, has hired a large number of high cited scholars in their 50s and 60s in recent years.


June 3, 2021 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Faculty News, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Rankings | Permalink

May 24, 2021

UIC John Marshall Law School to strike "John Marshall" from its name

Although the reason given is the historical John Marshall's racist views, I strongly suspect this will also have a positive effect on the school's peer evaluation scores in the USNEWS.COM rankings because of the  well-known halo effect of school names on scores (better to be a law school at the "University of Illinois" than a "John Marshall" law school).  (Recall the case of Loyola Law School, Los Angeles a few years back, where the loss of the brand known among law professors caused the reputation scores to plunge.)

UPDATE:  Derek Muller (Iowa) calls to my attention that the law school already got a huge boost in reputation score from the initial name change; we'll see if this new one has a further effect.


May 24, 2021 in Of Academic Interest, Rankings | Permalink

May 17, 2021

Entry-level hiring report: today is the last day to submit information...