Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Bad news for would-be Contracts and Commercial Law teachers: A rigorous scholarly analysis over five decades, using Harvard Law Review articles, an Excel spreadsheet, and the tools of technical stock market analysis concludes that American law schools are slightly overstocked with Contracts professors, but positively glutted with Commercial types.
That's the conclusion of Sara K. Stadler of Emory University (left), in her The Bulls and Bears of Law Teaching, forthcoming in the Washington & Lee Law Review. Her unique and startlingly original analysis rates each teaching field from "strong buy" (a field likely to be in demand) to "strong sell." While Bankruptcy, Tax, and Employment law are all rated "strong buy," the news isn't so good for Contracts (weak sell), and is worse for Commercial Law and Cyberlaw (strong sell). Here's the abstract:
This Essay provides readers with a unique perspective on the world of law teaching: Employing a quirky methodology, Professor Stadler predicts which subjects are likely to be most (and least) in demand among faculties looking to hire new professors in future - rating those subjects, like so many stocks, from "strong buy" to "weak buy" to "weak sell" to "strong sell". To generate the data on which her methodology is based, Professor Stadler catalogued, by subject, almost every Article, Book Review, Booknote, Comment, Essay, Note, Recent Case, Recent Publication, and Recent Statute published in the Harvard Law Review between and including the years 1946 and 2003. In the end, she found an interesting (and, she thinks, predictive) relationship between the subjects on which faculty choose to write and the subjects on which students choose to write.