Category Archives: Law and Economics

Juergen Backhaus, ‘Lawyers’ economics versus economic analysis of law: a critique of professor Posner’s “economic” approach to law by reference to a case concerning damages for loss of earning capacity’

Abstract: A methodological critique of the Chicago School of legal economic analysis, in particular Posner’s approach, is illustrated by an example characterizing Chicago-type ‘analysis of law’. Although the discussion of the example referred to may be interesting in its own right, its purpose here is to suggest a more general framework of criticism in order […]

Anthony Niblett, ‘On the efficiency of the common law: an application to the recovery of rewards’

Abstract: Richard Posner’s influence on the field of law and economics cannot be overstated. Among his many contributions, Posner offered an early conjecture that remains fascinating and controversial to this day: the idea that common law rules are more likely than legislative codes to be concerned with efficiency. In this paper, I compare the efficiency […]

Maxime Lambrecht, ‘The time limit on copyright: an unlikely tragedy of the intellectual commons’

Abstract: With their ‘tragedy of the commons’ paradigm for intellectual property, Landes and Posner argue that the most important benefit of intellectual property rights is not that they generate incentives to create new works, but that they ensure the efficient exploitation of existing intellectual works. This alternative economic case for IP notably relies on the […]

Magdalena Małecka, ‘Posner versus Kelsen: the challenges for scientific analysis of law’

Abstract: Law and economics scholars claim, among other things, to provide explanations of how law impacts behaviour. The aim of this article is to shed light on the conceptual and methodological difficulties related to analysis of the impact that law has on behaviour. The analysis advanced in the paper takes as its starting point a […]

Gilead and Green, ‘Positive Externalities and the Economics of Proximate Cause’

Abstract: Should drug manufacturers be liable to consumers who overall benefited substantially from a drug for unavoidable and reasonable negative side-effects, just because the drug is defective with regard to other side-effects or other consumers? Should a surgeon be liable for a typical and reasonable risk that materialized during the surgery just because another risk, […]

Israel Gilead, ‘On the Transformation of Economic Analysis of Tort Law’

Abstract: The Research Handbook on the Economic of Torts (Edward Elgar, 2013), edited by Jennifer Arlen, contains a very impressive collection of contributions written by leading tort scholars. The major theme that runs through the Handbook’s diversified chapters is that the economic analysis of tort law has developed, as it should have, from ideal and […]

Riaz Tejani, ‘Efficiency Unbound: Processual Deterrence for a New Legal Realism’

Abstract: Optimal deterrence theory seeks to promote resource maximization by identifying the most economically useful occasions and magnitudes for legal liability. But liability is only the final outcome of a burdensome process made more onerous for many today by widening inequalities in wealth and access to justice. Omission of this may reflect a preoccupation among […]

Allan Beever, ‘Negligence and utility’

Abstract: This article examines the claim that assessment of the standard of care in the law of negligence utilises and must utilise considerations of utility. It argues that this position is mistaken. It also maintains that cases frequently thought to support this view do not do so. The article also examines the justice of appeals […]

Henry Smith, ‘Property as complex interaction’

Abstract: In his important article, Benito Arruñada draws out the significance of sequential exchange for property rights and traces inadequacies in the economics of property rights to its overly contractual focus, to the exclusion of multiple transactions on the same asset. In this comment, I argue that although Arruñada’s problem is a genuine one, it […]

James Spindler, ‘Vicarious Liability for Managerial Myopia’

Abstract: This paper shows that fines on the firm (vicarious liability) can optimally deter misreporting by the firm’s manager. In a principal-agent model, shareholders choose whether to award equity compensation to a myopic (short-termist) manager. Equity induces effort and misreporting. The wedge between managerial and shareholders’ time horizons provides a measure of agency costs; more-myopic […]