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Lee Epstein
USC Gould School of Law

Lee Epstein

University Professor of Law & Political Science; and Charles L. and Ramona I. Hilliard Distinguished Professor of Law

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699 Exposition Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90089-0074 USA Personal Website: Link

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Last Updated: March 23, 2023




Lee Epstein is the University Professor of Law & Political Science; and Charles L. and Ramona I. Hilliard Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Southern California. Her research and teaching interests center on law and legal institutions, especially the behavior of judges.

She most recently served as the Ethan A.H. Shepley Distinguished University Professor at Washington University in St. Louis.

Epstein is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Academy of Political and Social Science. She also serves as co-director of the Center for Empirical Research in the Law and Principal Investigator of the U.S. Supreme Court Database. In addition to her position at the USC Gould School of Law, she is a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Hebrew University and a Visiting Professor at the University of Bergen in Norway.

A recipient of 12 grants from the National Science Foundation, Epstein has authored or co-authored more than 100 articles and essays and 18 books, including The Behavior of Federal Judges, with William M. Landes & Richard A. Posner (Harvard University Press) and An Introduction to Empirical Legal Research, with Andrew D. Martin (Oxford University Press). She is currently co-editing The Oxford Handbook on Judicial Behaviour (with Gunnar Grendstad, Urska Sadl, & Keren Weinshall). Professor Epstein’s empirical research is frequently cited in the New York Times, among other news media.

Awards include the Pritchett Award for the Best Book on Law and Courts and the Lasting Contribution Award for research "that has made a lasting impression on the field of law and courts” for The Choices Justice Make (with Jack Knight); the Teaching and Mentoring Award from the Law and Courts Section of the American Political Science Association for the Constitutional Law for a Changing America series; the Lifetime Achievement Award, also from the Law and Courts Section of the American Political Science Association.

Epstein teaches courses on constitutional law, judicial behavior, the U.S. Supreme Court, and research design and methods. She is a recipient of Northwestern University School of Law's Outstanding First-Year Course Professor Award. At Washington University, she was named Professor of the Year by the Undergraduate Political Science Association and received a Faculty of the Year Award from the Student Union. She also received Washington University's Alumni Board of Governors Distinguished Faculty Award and the Arthur Holly Compton Faculty Achievement Award. 

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FACULTY IN THE NEWS

Politi Fact
May 23, 2023
Re: David B. Cruz

Professor David Cruz was recently interviewed about a controversial bill that was passed in Connecticut. "Paying even modest attention to the bill’s definitions should make it clear beyond doubt that it will not be the source of protections based upon the age of people to whom one is attracted or with whom one has sex," Cruz said.

RECENT SCHOLARSHIP

Robin Craig
April, 2023

"Marine Biodiversity: Trends, Targets, and the BBNJ," Lewis and Clark School of Law 2023 Environmental Law Symposium: Protecting Biodiversity: Five Decades of Progress but an Uncertain Future, Portland, OR, April 7, 2023.

Jonathan Barnett
April, 2023

Comment Letter from Law Professors, Economists, and Business School Professors to the Federal Trade Commission on Proposed Non-Compete Clause Rule, Jonathan Barnett (co-lead author, with Adam Mossoff and Ted Sichelman), April 19, 2023.

Robin Craig
April, 2023

"Survival Equity and Climate Change Triage: How to Decide Who Lives and Who Dies," presentation as part of Adapting to a Warming World: Perspectives from the Environmental Law Collaborative, Hubbell Environmental Law Initiative, University of Iowa School of Law, Iowa City, IA, April 14, 2023.