School of Law News
USD Law Well Represented at Prestigious American Law & Economics Assoc. Meeting
PRINCETON, N.J. (May 10, 2010) — The University of San Diego School of Law was well represented at the prestigious American Law and Economics Association Annual Meeting on May 7 and 8 at Princeton University. Selection of the papers to be presented at this conference is extremely competitive.
USD Law Professor Abraham Bell chaired the International Law panel at the conference. Professor Orly Lobel presented "The Incentives Matrix: The Comparative Effectiveness of Rewards, Liabilities, Duties, and Protections for Reporting Illegality" (with Yuval Feldman) in the Organizations, Law, and the Labor Market panel. Professor Christopher Wonnell chaired the Relational Contracts panel as well as presented his paper, "Ex Ante Efficiency and Ex Post Equality," in the Bargaining, Delegation, and Ex Ante Efficiency panel.
Abraham Bell writes and teaches in the areas of property law, international law, and economic analysis of the law. He has taught courses on each of these subjects as well as the laws of war, land use law, administrative law, torts, property tax and legal aspects of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Among his notable recent publications are "Private Takings," 76 University of Chicago Law Review 517 (2009); "The Uselessness of Public Use," 106 Columbia Law Review 1412 (2006); and "Taking Compensation Private," 59 Stanford Law Review 871 (2007) (the latter two with Gideon Parchomovsky). Professor Bell clerked for Justice Mishael Cheshin of the Supreme Court of Israel, as well as in the High Court of Justice Department of Israel’s State Attorney’s office. He has served as a visiting professor at the University of Connecticut Law School and Fordham University Law School.
Orly Lobel writes and teaches in the areas of employment law, administrative law, legal theory, torts, consumer law and trade secrets. Prior to coming to USD, she taught at Yale Law School and served as a fellow at the Harvard University Center for Ethics and the Professions, the Kennedy School of Government's Hauser Center for Non-Profit Research, and the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. A graduate of Tel Aviv University Law School, she clerked on the Israeli Supreme Court and did her graduate studies at Harvard Law School. Her current research focuses on new models of law and governance in the context of the new economy, the labor market, privatization and new public management techniques. Professor Lobel received her LL.B. in 1998 from Tel Aviv University and both her LL.M. in 2000 and her S.J.D. in 2006 from Harvard Law School.
Using a series of experimental surveys of a representative panel of over 2000 employees, Professors Lobel and Feldman’s article compares the effect of different regulatory mechanisms—monetary rewards, protective rights, positive obligations, and liabilities—on individual motivation and behavior. By exploring the interplay between internal and external enforcement motivation, these experiments provide novel insights into the comparative advantages of legal mechanisms that incentivize compliance and social enforcement. At the policymaking level, the study offers important practical findings about the costs and benefits of different regulatory systems, including findings about inadvertent counterproductive effects of certain legal incentives. In particular, the findings indicate that in some cases offering monetary rewards to whistleblowers will lead to less, rather than more, reporting of illegality. At the more theoretical level, the findings contribute to several strands of inquiry, including motivational crowding-out effects, framing biases, the existence of a “holier-than-thou” effect, and gender differences among social enforcers. Together, these findings portray a psychological schema that offers invaluable guidance for policy and regulatory design.
Professor Christopher T. Wonnell was an associate editor of the Michigan Law Review and then practiced law in Chicago before joining the faculty in 1984. He teaches and writes in the areas of contracts, commercial law, law and economics, and jurisprudence. Among his many publications are "The Contractual Disempowerment of Employees," Stanford Law Review; "The Influential Myth of a Generalized Conflict of Interests Between Labor and Management," Georgetown Law Journal; and "Problems in the Application of Political Philosophy to Law," Michigan Law Review. He was voted professor of the year by the student body in 1993.
About the America Law and Economics Association
The American Law and Economics Association is dedicated to the advancement of economic understanding of law and related areas of public policy and regulation. Founded in 1991, the membership includes academic and practicing lawyers and economists. The Association holds an annual two-day meeting in May at which members present papers dealing with a wide variety of topics concerning the interrelation of law and economics. Since 1999, the Association has published the American Law and Economics Review, a refereed journal.
About the University of San Diego School of Law
The University of San Diego School of Law is a center of academic excellence focused on preparing its students for legal practice in the new century. One of the most selective law schools in the country, the School of Law’s nationally recognized faculty create a demanding, yet welcoming environment that emphasizes individualized education. USD law school graduates consistently score higher than the state average on the California Bar Exam and go on to practice law throughout the country and abroad, forming an influential network of alumni. The USD School of Law is one of only 81 law schools in the country to have a chapter of the Order of the Coif, the most distinguished rank of American law schools. The school is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools. Founded in 1954, the law school is part of the University of San Diego, a private, nonprofit, independent, Roman Catholic university chartered in 1949.
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