Thursday, March 01, 2012

On faculty-edited law reviews

Of the trend away from student-run law reviews:

Although it is not common in the rest of the academic world, the vast majority of law journals are student-edited,” says Stone, who currently edits the Review with Hutchinson and Strauss, which as of this issue, is available simultaneously online through JSTOR and in hardback. “Kurland felt there was a need for really highly professionalized commentary about the work of the Court, instead of relying on student-edited law reviews that more randomly decided what will or will not get published.”

By 2006, it was clear that the Review was a first in a growing trend of faculty-edited law reviews; by LexisNexis Directory of Law Reviews’ count, there were now 184 non-student edited law journals, compared to 505 student-edited ones.

Richard Posner, Senior Lecturer at the Law School and judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, remarked on this change more than two decades ago, lauding that faculty expertise can benefit specialty journals.

“The focus of scholarly publication at the academic frontier is gradually shifting from student-edited to faculty-edited, faculty-refereed journals,” wrote Posner in the 1986-87 Harvard Law Review, a student law review. “More scholars are coming to realize that law reviews are not well-equipped to select, and through editing to improve, articles outside of the core of legal doctrinal analysis, which, important though it is, no longer exhausts the domain of legal scholarship.”



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