The Volokh Conspiracy

Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent


2021 Study of Law Faculty Scholarly Impact Released

The latest edition of the Sisk, Catlin, Anderson, and Gunderson study of faculty scholarly impact is out. Download it while it's hot.


The 2021 edition of the "Sisk Study," aka "Scholarly Impact of Law School Faculties in 2021: Updating the Leiter Score Ranking for the Top Third," has just been posted on SSRN. It ranks the top third or so of law faculties based upon their scholarly impact, as measured by law review citations.

Brian Leiter has posted a list of the top-50 law schools, as ranked by this study. He will also follow up with individual professor rankings by subject area, as he has in the past.

There are a few changes to the study this year. Greater attention has been paid to the potential over- or under-counting of citations, as a result of false positives, multiple names, et als, and star-footnote acknowledgements.

The authors also report on the results of an experimental survey of U.S. News academic voters on which professors have the greatest academic impact: "Cass Sunstein, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Erwin Chemerinsky, and Angela Onwuachi-Willig hold the top four positions, with Mark Lemley, Catharine MacKinnnon, and Orin Kerr tied for the fifth position." Congrats to Orin!