Monday, March 17, 2008
Posted by Jeff Lipshaw
As noted earlier, Paul Secunda has a new piece posted on SSRN (see below - he's in 9th place right now, but moving quickly up the charts), a light-hearted look at the lateral market for law professor, and how to succeed therein. David Zaring and Gordon Smith over at Conglomerate noted the "success" some of these pieces have in terms of SSRN downloads, and I was curious how much navel-gazing and career-directed stuff actually shows up on SSRN. In a move that demonstrates much of my problem as an empiricist, I went to the SSRN "Top Papers" listing, clicked on the "All-Time" ranking, and proceeded to make my way through page after page, noting where I thought candidates appeared. Unfortunately, at about page 18 (having looked at 1,800 titles), I got bored.
So my top ten "career-enhancement" paper ranking (as measured by SSRN all-time downloads) comes with the following caveats: (a) I arbitrarily decided what fit in the category; (b) I stopped my more rigorous method at papers with about 1,300 downloads; (c) I included papers I recalled seeing before below the 1,300 level, and (d) I included one paper by Mark West at Michigan not because it fell within the career-enhancing category, but I thought it was whimsical. The far and away leader is Thom Brooks (pictured above left) of the Newcastle Law School. Here goes:
If I have left you out in my haste (or boredom), let me know.