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The University of Chicago Law School Faculty Podcast

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Listen to lectures by—and discussions with—the University of Chicago Law School's eminent faculty, as well as some very special guests.

Listen to lectures by—and discussions with—the University of Chicago Law School's eminent faculty, as well as some very special guests.
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Listen to lectures by—and discussions with—the University of Chicago Law School's eminent faculty, as well as some very special guests.




M. Todd Henderson, "Lawyer CEOs"

Does legal education matter? In this lecture, Professor Todd Henderson presents some data on this question, using the behavior of corporate executives as an instrument. Looking at the 10% of large, public company CEOs who are lawyers, the talk tries to determine whether CEOs trained as lawyers act differently than CEOs trained in other ways. Do lawyer CEO firms get sued more or less or the same as other firms? Do they manage litigation differently? And, if they do, what is the impact on...


David Bowman, "Alternative Reference Rates: SOFR, LIBOR, and Issues for Transitions"

The choice of new benchmark interest rate should be of special importance to practitioners as well as academics that study law and economics. As new alternative rates are being considered in the United States, this half day conference, co-sponsored by the University of Chicago Law School, brought together leading academics, as well as representatives from banks, law firms, swap dealers, regulators and others to share their views on design and implementation of new indexes in loan...


John G. Malcolm, "Current Topics in Criminal Justice Reform"

With commentary by Professor Jonathan Masur John G. Malcolm oversees The Heritage Foundation’s work to increase understanding of the Constitution and the rule of law as director of the think tank’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies. In addition to his duties at Heritage, Malcolm is chairman of the Criminal Law Practice Group of the Federalist Society. Malcolm has previously served in both the public and private sectors. Among other positions, he has worked as general...


Mary Anne Case, "Cultivating an Incest Taboo in the Workplace"

The idea that workplaces could benefit from an incest taboo is not one of Chicago’s best, but one of Margaret Mead’s. Professor Mary Anne Case has been promoting it and explaining its relevance to Title VII enforcement long before Harvey Weinstein and the #MeToo movement gave it new relevance and visibility. Mary Anne Case is the Arnold I. Shure Professor of Law. This Chicago's Best Ideas lecture was presented on February 21, 2018.


Jonathan S. Masur, "The Behavioral Law & Economics of Happiness"

A central question in law and economics is how people will behave in the presence of legal rules. An essential part of that inquiry is what makes people happy or unhappy – what increases or decreases their “subjective well-being.” There is ample evidence that individuals make decisions based in part on what they believe will improve their well-being. In order to understand how legal rules will influence behavior, it is thus vital to understand how those rules will affect happiness. More...


Lior Jacob Strahilevitz, “Interpreting Contracts via Surveys and Experiments”

Interpreting the language of contracts is the most common and least satisfactory task courts perform in contract disputes. In this Chicago’s Best Ideas lecture Professor Strahilevitz proposes to take much of this task out of the hands of lawyers and judges, entrusting it instead to the public. Strahilevitz’s research (written jointly with Professor Ben-Shahar) develops and tests a novel regime — the “survey interpretation method” — in which interpretation disputes are resolved though large...


Henry Shue, "Gambling with Their Climate: Future Generations, Negative Emissions, & Risk Transfers"

This lecture defends three main theses: (I) that all decisions about the degree of ambition for emissions mitigation are unavoidably also decisions about how to distribute risk across generations and, more specifically, (II) that the less ambitious the mitigation is, the more inherently objectionable the resulting inter-generational risk distribution is, and (III) that mitigation that is so lacking in ambition that it bequeaths risks that remain unlimited, when the risks could have been...


Supreme Court Preview 2017: Highlights and Perspectives

On the first Monday in October, the Supreme Court session opens. Professors Adam Chilton, Aziz Huq, and Daniel Hemel offer insight into some of the issues the Court will hear in the upcoming year. Recorded on September 18, 2017, in Washington, DC.


Aaron Nielson, "The Past and Future of Deference: From Justice Scalia to Justice Gorsuch"

With commentary by Professor Daniel Hemel Professor Nielson is a law professor at Brigham Young University and teaches/writes in the areas of administrative law, civil procedure, federal courts, and antitrust. Before joining the faculty, Professor Nielson was a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. He also has served as a law clerk to Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr. of the U.S. Supreme Court, Judge Janice Rogers Brown of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C....


To POE or Not to POE: The Proper Evidentiary Standard for Campus Sexual Misconduct (A Debate)

Featuring Professors Nancy Chi Cantalupo, Katharine Baker, Daniel Hemel, and Richard Epstein. Moderated by Professor Emily Buss. Presented by the Domestic and Sexual Violence Project, Defenders, Law Women's Caucus, Education and Child Advocacy Society, and UChicago Assault Awareness and Prevention Committee, and funded in part by Student Government.


Gillian Thomas, "Title VII and Women in the Workplace"

Gillian Thomas, staff attorney at the ACLU Women's Rights Project, will discuss issues in her recently-published book, Because of Sex: One Law, Ten Cases, and Fifty Years about Title VII and its effects for women in the workplace. The book details ten important Supreme Court cases for women's equality, and spends as much time on the personal details as the legal ones for an extremely compelling read. As Title VII is one of the most important safeguards for women and helps ensure gender...


Anthony J. Casey, "The Short Happy Life of Rules and Standards"

The choice between rules and standards in lawmaking is a central question. But the line between the two forms is not as clear as most scholars presume. This talk argues that the lack of a coherent unifying principle in the rules-and-standards distinction is becoming more evident as technologies behind lawmaking evolve. It will explore the leading accounts of rules and standards, the insights they have provided into the process and meaning of law, and why the distinction may be reaching the...


Saul Levmore, "Carrots and Sticks in Law (and Life)"

One of the great Chicago Ideas is the equivalence of positive and negative incentives. The government can motivate you by rewarding some behavior or by penalizing your failure to behave in the preferred manner. Private parties rarely have the authority to hit you with sticks, so they must usually begin with carrots, or positive inducements, unless law offers torts or other negative inducements in the background. But things quickly get more complicated. Rewards might draw people to an...


Jim Zirin & William Baude, "The Post-Election Future of the Supreme Court after Scalia"

Jim Zirin graduated from Princeton University with honors and received his law degree from the University of Michigan Law School where he was an editor of the Michigan Law Review and a member of the Order of the Coif. For three years, he was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and served in the criminal division under Robert M. Morgenthau. William Baude is Neubauer Family Assistant Professor of Law at the University of Chicago Law School, where he...


Michael McConnell, "Religion and Law: Is There a Connection?"

With commentary by Professor William Hubbard. Michael W. McConnell is the Richard and Frances Mallery Professor and director of the Constitutional Law Center at Stanford Law School, as well as Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution. He is a leading authority on freedom of speech and religion, the relation of individual rights to government structure, originalism, and various other aspects of constitutional history and constitutional law. He is author of numerous articles and co-author of...


October Term 2016: Highlights & Perspectives

In this First Monday event, Law School faculty discuss their insight and opinions on upcoming United States Supreme Court cases and the issues currently facing the Court. Featuring: Anthony J. Casey, '02, Professor of Law and Mark Claster Mamolen Teaching Scholar Nicholas Stephanopoulos, Assistant Professor of Law David Strauss, the Gerald Ratner Distinguished Service Professor of Law. Moderated by Sarah M. Konsky, Assistant Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the Jenner & Block...


John Tasioulas, "Minimum Core Obligations: Human Rights in the Here and Now"

Professor Tasioulas discusses the notion of the ‘minimum core obligations’ associated with economic, social and cultural human rights, such as the rights to education and health. The idea of minimum core obligations, which is a nascent doctrine in international human rights law, is heavily contested both as to its meaning and utility. John Tasioulas is Visiting Professor of Law and the Charles J. Merriam Scholar at the University of Chicago Law School; Yeoh Professor of Politics, Philosophy,...


Martha Nussbaum, "Long Long Lives: Should We Want Them?"

Today, as our capacity to prolong life increases, people dispute whether indefinite prolongation could possibly be good. A leading bioethicist, Ezekiel Emanuel (brother of Rahm) has written that we should all want to die at 75! I'll approach this question by drawing on ancient Greek arguments about why immortal life is undesirable -- arguments that I find fatally flawed. I then turn to two more recent philosophers who try to reconcile us to finite and reasonably short mortal lives: "Younger...


Michael Kirby, "North Korea and our Dilemma"

Michael Kirby, "North Korea and our Dilemma: How to Secure Accountability for Crimes Against Humanity by a Recalcitrant Nuclear State?" Michael Kirby was a Justice of the High Court of Australia (1996-2009), the nation's highest appellate and constitutional Court. In 2013-14 he served as chair of the Commission of Inquiry of the UN Human Rights Council investigating crimes against humanity in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea). The commission found grave and...


Justin Driver, "The Southern Manifesto in Myth and Memory"

Justin Driver is Harry N. Wyatt Professor of Law and Herbert and Marjorie Fried Research Scholar. His principal research interests include constitutional law, constitutional theory, and the intersection of race with legal institutions. Prior to joining the University of Chicago Law School faculty, Driver was a visiting professor at Harvard, Stanford, and the University of Virginia. He began his career in legal academia at the University of Texas in 2009. This Loop Luncheon was presented on...