Legal Originality

30 Pages Posted: 30 Mar 2007 Last revised: 3 Dec 2008

See all articles by Mathias Siems

Mathias Siems

European University Institute (EUI); Durham University; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: November 1, 2007


In legal academia it is highly controversial how to be original in legal research. This article will try to maintain an attitude of tolerance in not promoting or discrediting one particular methodology. Instead, it will identify four different ways of being original. Perhaps the most common approach is to deal with micro-legal questions. Many legal academics also pursue research in macro-legal questions. Less common but growing is the importance of scientific legal research and research in non-legal topics.

Keywords: Legal research, legal scholarship, legal methods, micro-legal research, macro-legal research, scientific legal research

JEL Classification: A12, B40, K00, K10, K20, K40

Suggested Citation

Siems, Mathias, Legal Originality (November 1, 2007). Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 28, pp. 147-164, 2008, Available at SSRN: or

Mathias Siems (Contact Author)

European University Institute (EUI) ( email )

Via Bolognese 156 (Villa Salviati)
Firenze, 50139


Durham University ( email )

Stockton Road
Durham, County Durham DH1 3LE
United Kingdom


European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels

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