The Labor Market for New Law Professors
Journal of Empirical Legal Studies, Forthcoming
44 Pages Posted: 29 Sep 2013 Last revised: 2 Oct 2013
Date Written: September 27, 2013
Law school professors control the production of lawyers and influence the evolution of law. Understanding who is hired as a tenure-track law professor is of clear importance to debates about the state of legal education in the United States. But while opinions abound on the law school hiring process, little is empirically known about what explains success in the market for law professors. Using a unique and extensive data set of survey responses from candidates in the 2007-2008 legal academic labor market, we examine the factors that influence which candidates are interviewed and ultimately hired by law schools. We find that law schools appear open to non-traditional candidates in the early phases of the hiring process but when it comes to the ultimate decision — hiring — they focus on candidates who look like current law professors.
Keywords: Labor Markets, Legal Profession, Legal Education, Law Schools, Law Professors, Faculty Appointments, Empirical
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