Saturday, 2:15 PM
Harvard Law lures scholar from U of Chicago
(Harvard Law School)
By Peter Schworm, Globe Staff
Harvard Law School has scored a major academic coup, luring renowned legal scholar Cass R. Sunstein from the University of Chicago Law School to join its star-studded faculty.
Sunstein, who graduated from Harvard College in 1975 and Harvard Law School in 1978, will begin teaching in the fall and direct the new Program on Risk Regulation, which will focus on how law and policy deal with hazards such as terrorism, climate change, and natural disasters.
"Cass Sunstein is the preeminent legal scholar of our time -- the most wide-ranging, the most prolific, the most cited, and the most influential," said Elena Kagan, dean of the law school, in a statement released this morning. "His work in any one of the fields he pursues -- administrative law and policy, constitutional law and theory, behavioral economics and law, environmental law, to name a non-exhaustive few -- would put him in the very front ranks of legal scholars."
"If I could add only one person to the faculty," Kagan added, "Cass would be that person."
Sunstein, the author of more than 15 books and hundreds of scholarly articles, said in a statement the new program would rely on substantial student involvement.
"The nation and the world are facing many unanticipated problems, and policymakers must find ways to protect people from risks without creating unanticipated side-effects,” Sunstein said in the statement. “Our goals are to improve our sense of what the law is now doing -- and to see how it might do better."
After law school, Sunstein clerked for Justice Benjamin Kaplan of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court and Justice Thurgood Marshall of the U.S. Supreme Court. Sunstein joined the University of Chicago Law School faculty in 1981 as an assistant professor.
He has also worked on constitutional and law reform issues as a legal adviser for many nations, including Ukraine, Poland, China, South Africa, and Russia.
His books include "Democracy and the Problem of Free Speech," "Radicals in Robes: Why Extreme Right-Wing Courts Are Wrong for Ameria," and "Are Judges Political? An Empirical Analysis of the Federal Judiciary."
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