April 7, 2010
Leiter's Top 25 Law Faculties in Scholarly Impact by Citation Count, 2005-2009
Chicago law prof Brian Leiter's latest analysis aims to identify the 25 law faculties with the most “scholarly impact” as measured by citations during roughly the past five years. The methodology is similar to Leiter's past citation studies, listed here, but untenured faculty are excluded this year. At the institutional level, Leiter cautions that "citation studies are but one measure of the scholarly distinction of faculties. They tend to favor smaller faculties over larger faculties, which no doubt explains why schools like Texas and Virginia and Georgetown come out behind schools like Vanderbilt and Cornell, even though I don’t think any informed scholarly judgment would rate them that way."
In addition to ranking the top 25 law schools overall, for the period covering 2005-2009 Leiter ranks the ten most cited law profs, the ten most cited female law profs, and by 13 areas of specialization, the top ten or top 20 most cited law profs in the below listed specialties. About the specialties rankings, Leiter writes "The impact ratings correlate decently but imperfectly with scholarly reputation ... The ordinal rank in the “top ten” list should not, however, be taken to correspond to scholarly excellence or reputation. But those in “the top ten” are usually thought of as among the leading scholars in the area."
Specialties covered in Leiter's five year citation study:
- Administrative Law (including regulation and telecommunications)
- Commercial Law/Bankruptcy
- Corporate Law/Securities Regulation
- Criminal Law & Procedure
- Family Law
- International Law
- Intellectual Property/Cyberlaw
- Law & Economics
- Law & Philosophy
- Legal History
- Public Law Areas (incl. constitutional law and legislation)