Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Empire State Legal Writing Conference (Online)

The Empire State Legal Writing Conference will return for a two-day virtual event on Thursday and Friday, May 13 and 14, 2021. The conference will be hosted by New York Law School and will include sessions for scholars with works in progress on the 13th, as well as presentations and panels on both days. There will not be a charge to attend the online conference.


Hat tip to Stephen Paskey (Buffalo) and the 2021 Empire State Legal Writing Conference Committee Members:

Pam Armstrong, Albany

Robin Boyle, St. John’s

Heidi Brown, Brooklyn

Catharine Du Bois, Brooklyn

Elizabeth Fajans, Brooklyn

Anne Goldstein, NYLS

Antonella Milevski, NYLS

Aliza Milner, Syracuse

Ann Nowak, Touro

Stephen Paskey, Buffalo

Amy R. Stein, Hofstra

Lynn Su, NYLS

Michelle Fongyee Whelan, Cornell



December 30, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

2021 Legal Writing Scholarship Grants

The Legal Writing Institute (LWI), the Association of Legal Writing Directors (ALWD), and LexisNexis have announced the 2021 Legal Writing Scholarship Grants for teachers of legal research and writing.  These research grants enable gifted educators to spend their summers exploring scholarly ideas and producing scholarship that will assist others in the field of legal research and writing. While preference is given to proposals in the field of legal research and writing, consideration will be given to all proposals from legal research and writing professionals if the proposals are related to legal research and writing or inform the teaching of legal research and writing. The grants provide evidence of the three organizations’ support for the scholarly pursuits of legal research and writing professionals. 

In the past, the grants have varied from $2,000 to $10,000. The number of grants awarded depends on the quality of the applications and funds available. In 2020, LWI and ALWD cooperatively evaluated and awarded grants to three applicants.

The joint LWI-ALWD committee awarding grants consists of two groups that function independently. Committee members are either voters or mentors for the grant applicants. Voters review and score grant applications with no information about the identities of the applicants. Applicants may approach the mentors for advice on the grant application.  Mentors will not score applications or participate in any way in deciding who receives a grant. 

Application Procedures

  1. Eligibility: The grants are open to both full-time and adjunct teachers of legal writing and research. Teachers who have previously received a scholarship grant are ineligible for this program for three years after they have received such a grant. LWI and ALWD Board members, officers, and members of the Joint LWI-ALWD Scholarship Committee or the LWI Scholarship Development Committee are ineligible to participate until they have been out of those positions for a full academic year.  LWI, ALWD and LexisNexis encourage proposals from both veteran professionals and those new to the field. 

LWI, ALWD and LexisNexis specifically encourage proposals by faculty from historically underrepresented and marginalized groups and from those who have not, for example, received grants, presented in panels, or published in the past. LWI, ALWD, and LexisNexis recognize the historical inequalities that pervade the legal profession and the legal academy and affirms its commitment to contributing to a legal writing discipline that is equitable and inclusive. They further recognize that increasing diversity brings added intellectual, scholarly, cultural, social, and economic benefits to the academic and lawyering communities. 

  1. Deadline: Applications must be received by 5:00 p.m. East Coast Time on February 22, 2021.  Please email the application as a Word document to: Susan Chesler, [email protected], Sarah Morath, [email protected], and Jane Grisé, [email protected]
  1. Application materials: The Grant Application Form is available by email from Susan Chesler, [email protected], Sarah Morath, [email protected], or Jane Grisé, [email protected].
  1. Where to get help: If you would like a mentor for your grant application, please contact Sarah Morath, [email protected]
  1. Review Process and Standards: The Proposal Description of the Grant Application Form, including the Detailed Description/Abstracts, will be blindly reviewed by the non-mentoring members of the Joint LWI-ALWD Scholarship Committee.  Personal information will be removed from the application before voters see it. 

The non-mentoring committee members will rank and rate the applications. First, they will  consider whether the applications meet the following requirements:

  • Is the proposed work related to Legal Writing?
  • Is the scope of the project realistic?
  • Is the work likely to be published?

In addition, the non-mentoring committee members will consider the following:

  • Is the proposal well thought-out and well written?
  • Are there appropriate research sources?
  • Is the topic interesting and will it appeal to targeted readers?
  • Is the topic one that has previously been covered in the relevant literature?  If so, does the proposed work add something substantive to the discussion?
  • Are the research methods (empirical research, multi-disciplinary research, statistical analysis, traditional legal research) chosen likely to result in a good quality written product?

Once the voters have scored and ranked the anonymous applications and have made their recommendations, the Joint Scholarship Committee will forward those recommendations to the LWI and ALWD Boards of Directors who make the final grant decisions. The Boards will, at the time they make their selections, have access to the information on the application forms in order to balance substantive review of the projects with due consideration for need (as reflected by eligibility for research grants at one’s own institution). 

Whether a person is eligible for funding from their own school is a significant factor for the Boards to weigh when awarding the grants. If a successful grant winner receives funding from another source after receiving a grant, the grant will be reduced by the amount of that funding. Recipients, however, may continue to publicize their status as a grant recipient in CVs or other documents.

  1. Selection date and grant disbursement: The committee will announce recipients of the research grants by May 3, 2021. At the time of selection, 40% of the research-grant award will be paid to each grant recipient. The grant recipient will receive the remaining 60% of the award when the article has been accepted for publication.  Grant recipients should submit the completed article to the Joint LWI-ALWD Scholarship Committee along with a copy of the acceptance for publication.
  1. Mentors: At the time that the awards are announced, each grant recipient will be assigned a mentor by the Joint Scholarship Committee. This mentor, chosen based upon the topic of the proposed scholarly work or any other criteria mutually agreed upon by the applicant and the Committee, will provide the recipient with guidance and assistance in developing the project through to completion and placing it for publication. 
  1. Formalities: Grant winners should thank both LWI & ALWD for the grant in the footnotes of the article. Recipients of the LexisNexis funding should thank that organization.
  1. Publication rights: Grant winners should negotiate permission from the publisher to post the article on the LWI & ALWD websites.  This requirement can be waived if it would prevent placing the article in a well-regarded publication or require that the author purchase rights. 
  1. Reporting requirement: Every June 1 and December 1, until the grant recipient publishes the article, the grant recipient will submit a written progress report to the Co-Chairs of the Joint LWI-ALWD Scholarship Grant Committee. 
  1. Time limit for completing the article: The time limit for completing the article for which the recipient is awarded a scholarship grant is 24 months. Completed, for the purposes of the grant, means that the article has been accepted for publication.

Adapted from an announcement from LWI and ALWD.


December 29, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, December 28, 2020

Dayton is Hiring

The University of Dayton School of Law invites applications for an Assistant Professor of Lawyering Skills. This is a non-tenure track position with an initial appointment of one year and the possibilityof renewal for long-term (three or five-year) appointments after three years of satisfactory service. Contact Professor Adam Todd at Dayton for more information.



December 28, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Pound Civil Justice Institute Announces Winners of its 2021 Civil Justice Scholarship Awards

2021 Civil Justice Scholarship Award to Professors Sandra Sperino, Suja Thomas, and Mark E. Wojcik

2021 Award to Two Publications

The Officers and Trustees of the Pound Civil Justice Institute have bestowed the Institute’s 2021 Civil Justice Scholarship Award to Prof. Sandra Sperino (Cincinnati), Prof. Suja Thomas (Illinois), and Prof. Mark E. Wojcik (UIC John Marshall Law School).

Professor Sperino, of the University of Cincinnati College of Law, and Professor Thomas, of the University of Illinois College of Law, are honored for their book, Unequal: How America's Courts Undermine Discrimination Law  (Oxford University Press 2017), in which they examine the ways in which courts have impeded private enforcement of antidiscrimination laws through civil litigation.

Professor Wojcik, of UIC John Marshall Law School, is honored for his article, Extending Batson to Peremptory Challenges of Jurors Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, 40 No. Ill. U. L. Rev. 1 (2019), in which he argues that it is time to extend the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Batson v. Kentucky to all federal and state trial courts, and to prohibit expressly the exclusion of jurors based on their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity.

The Award recipients will receive monetary stipends and a paid trip for themselves and a guest to be honored at the next Pound Fellows reception, which will take place (circumstances permitting) in Chicago on July 18, 2021.

High Distinction for a Book and an Article

The Institute also recognized two publications for high distinction among the nominations received.

Professors Stephen Burbank, of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and Sean Farhang, of the University of California, Berkeley, are recognized for their book Rights and Retrenchment: The Counterrevolution Against Federal Litigation  (Cambridge University Press 2017), in which they examine responses to the “rights revolution” that unfolded in the United States during the 1960s and 1970s, and trace the increasing hostility to the enforcement of rights through lawsuits.

Professor Nora Freeman Engstrom, of Stanford Law School, is recognized for her article, The Trouble with Trial Times Limits, 106 Geo. L. J. 933 (2018). In the article, Prof. Engstrom examines an issue that is quietly and negatively affecting trials at a time when few cases go to trial. She looks at specific trials and data that demonstrate the random implementation of time limits of trials, and how they add additional limitations on plaintiffs.

The Pound Institute established its Civil Justice Scholarship Award to recognize current scholarly legal research and writing focused on topics in civil justice, including access to justice and the benefits of the U.S. civil justice system, as well as the right to trial by jury in civil cases. The Award deliberation committee consists of two legal academics, a former judge, and several of the Institute’s Trustees. The committee reviewed 35 nominations for scholarly books and articles submitted for this third annual cycle of the Award, and was impressed by the high quality and breadth of the work submitted.

Press Release from the Pound Civil Justice Institute

December 2, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Nominations for the Scribes Law-Review Award

Each year, Scribes—The American Society of Legal Writers—sponsors a competition to recognize an outstanding note or comment written by a law student who is associated with a student-edited law review or journal. This award has the distinction of being the only national award in the United States for student authors that places no limitation on subject matter.

Journals may enter year’s competition by submitting an outstanding student note or comment that has been, or will be, published between June 1, 2020, and May 31, 2021. The competition will be judged by the Scribes Law Review Committee. The winning journal and the author of the winning note or comment will each receive a plaque.

Nominations are due by January 15, 2021. To receive a form or for any questions, contact Philip Johnson, the Executive Director of Scribes, at [email protected]


December 1, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)


Michael Goldblatt has something to say about #hashtags. Click here to have a look at hjs blog, Law Practice Tips. As he notes in his blog post, hashtags (#) and handles (@) can be used to search content on social media and increase the visibility of your postings. His advice is to use # with words to lure readers searching for those words.


December 1, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

LWI One-Day Workshops -- So Sweet to Tweet!

If you plan to tweet about any of the sessions at the upcoming Legal Writing Institute One Day workshops, the LWI Communications and Public Relations Officers ask that you please tag LWI––@Lwionline––and please use the hashtag #LWIOneDay2020 .
Hat tips to Lucy Jewel and Mary Bowman

December 1, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)