Faculty Research

SLS faculty are high-impact scholars whose research defines the cutting edge.

Consistently recognized for their excellence and influence on how people think, on public policy and on the world, Stanford Law scholar-educators are committed to research that crosses disciplines and defines the frontiers of law. SLS faculty are among the most prolific legal scholars in the country, producing widely used casebooks, scholarly articles, empirical studies, working papers, editorials, briefs and academic and popular books on everything from cyberlaw to constitutional law to racial profiling.

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Faculty Research 2

Regulating the Obesity Epidemic

Professors David Studdert and Michelle Mello say one of the biggest culprits of the obesity epidemic – on top of fast foods and sedentary lifestyles – is sugary drinks. And they believe public health law can play a role in curbing the adverse effects of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs). The sweet spot, Studdert and Mello say, lies in the strategic use of measures such as higher SSB taxes, limits on advertisements targeting kids and restrictions on soft drinks and sugar-sweetened teas and sports drinks in government institutions, such as public schools

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Repairing the Vaccine Safety Net

With childhood vaccinations a hot topic among parents, physicians and lawmakers, SLS Professor Nora Engstrom has been assessing the safety net created by Congress in 1986 to offer “simple justice” to children who suffer from vaccine injury. Analyzing more than three decades of data, Engstrom found that the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) results in a slow-moving, often-antagonistic process, with petitioners challenged in securing even small amounts of compensation. Although Engstrom’s findings are discouraging, they pave the way for solutions. “If we want to convince more American parents to vaccinate their children, improving the VICP could help,” says Engstrom.

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Faculty Research 3

Empiricists At Work

More than a quarter of the SLS faculty conducts empirical research in pursuit of legal insights and solutions to pressing societal challenges.

Robert M. Daines

Robert M. Daines
Law and finance, including CEO pay, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, mandatory disclosure reputations, IPOs, shareholder voting, and takeover defense

John J. Donohue III
The impact of law and public policy in a wide range of areas, including civil rights and antidiscrimination law, employment discrimination, crime and criminal justice, and school funding

David Engstrom

David Freeman Engstrom
Institutional design of litigation and regulatory regimes, including the roots of American employment discrimination law

Nora Engstrom

Nora Freeman Engstrom
Tort law and professional ethics

Lawrence M. Friedman

Lawrence M. Friedman
Legal history as a branch of social history

Joseph A. Grundfest ’78
Capital markets, corporate governance, and securities litigation

Deborah Hensler

Deborah R. Hensler
Dispute resolution, complex litigation, class actions, and mass tort liability

Daniel Ho

Daniel E. Ho
Administrative law, antidiscrimination law, and courts

Mark G. Kelman

Mark G. Kelman
Social science approaches to diverse legal fields, including criminal law, taxation, administration regulation, and disability law

Daniel P. Kessler

Daniel P. Kessler
Health policy and health care finance

Michael Klausner

Michael Klausner
Corporate law, corporate governance, business transactions, and financial regulation

Mark A. Lemley

Mark Lemley
Intellectual property, computer and Internet law, patent law, trademark law, antitrust, and remedies

Robert J. MacCoun

Robert J. MacCoun
Law and psychology, including illicit drug use, drug policy, social influence processes, and bias in the use and interpretation of research evidence

Michelle M. Mello

Michelle M. Mello
Effects of law and regulation on health care delivery and population health outcomes

Alison D. Morantz

Alison D. Morantz
Law and economics of protective labor regulation, enforcement of workplace safety laws, and legal history

Joan Petersilia

Joan Petersilia
Performance of U.S. criminal justice agencies, including sentencing and corrections reform

David M. Studdert

David M. Studdert
How the legal system influences the health and well-being of populations

Analyzing Trends in Securities Class Actions

Are securities class actions valuable supplements to SEC enforcement of securities fraud laws? Or are they abusive excesses of the plaintiffs’ bar? The answer, SLS Professor Michael Klausner believes, can best be determined empirically. Klausner mobilized an SLS team to help gather the necessary data, and the effort evolved into Stanford Securities Litigation Analytics. The immense dataset, accessible to legal scholars and attorneys, tracks and collects data on private shareholder securities litigation and public enforcements brought by the Securities Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice. Providing access to all cases filed since 2000, SSLA is just one of several SLS databases that help attorneys answer complex questions with real data.

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Michael Klausner 2