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Ph.D. Program in Law & Economics

Joint-degree students pursue a Ph.D. in law and economics and a J.D. concurrently in a fully integrated law and economics curriculum. The program is based in the Law School. Students are fully funded by a competitive package of fellowship support covering tuition and stipend for both degrees.

Our principal fields include law and economics, risk and environmental regulation, labor markets and human resources, and behavioral law and economics.


Recent Research Highlights

Professors Andrew Daughety and Jennifer Reinganum's article "The Effect of Third-Party Funding of Plaintiffs on Settlement" appears in the August 2014 issue of the American Economic Review.

Professors Daughety and Reinganum were also recently published in The University of Chicago Law Review. Their article "Revelation and Suppression of Private Information in Settlement-Bargaining Models" appeared in the Winter 2014 issue.

Professor Joni Hersch's working paper "Catching Up Is Hard to Do: Undergraduate Prestige, Elite Graduate Programs, and the Earnings Premium" is featured in the New York Times's article 'Why You Can't Catch Up.'

Professor W. Kip Viscusi's research with Ted Gayer has received national media attention. Their working paper for SSRN and Brookings "Determining the Proper Scope of Climate Change Benefits" was most recently cited in The Huffington Post.

Professor Paige Marta Skiba's paper "Payday Loan Choices and Consequences" has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking.

Professor Jennifer Bennett Shinall's recent research has received national media attention. Her paper, "Why Obese Workers Earn Less: Occupational Sorting and Its Implications for the Legal System," has been featured on, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, NPR, and others.  

Professor Shinall was recently featured in  Research News @ VU as a new faculty member at Vanderbilt Law School. The article also highlights her research on obesity and workplace discrimination.

Law and Economics graduate Caroline Cecot is a Postdoctoral Research Scholar in 2014-2015. She will spend her postdoctoral year working to publish her dissertation "Shale Development: Risks, Responses, and Regulation," exploring new research ideas, and teaching Risk and Environmental Regulation II to Ph.D. students.

Law and Economics Faculty
Research Interests


W. Kip Viscusi
Risk and environmental regulation, behavioral economics, law and economics

Joni Hersch
Labor economics, discrimination,
law and economics

Other Faculty

Kathryn Anderson
Labor, health, economic development

Caroline Cecot
Risk and environmental regulation,
labor markets and human resources

Andrew Daughety
Industrial organization, law and economics, microeconomics

Jennifer Reinganum
Industrial organization, law and economics

Jennifer Bennett Shinall
Labor economics and employment law, legal and economic history

Paige Marta Skiba
Behavioral economics,
law and economics

Director of Graduate Studies

Erin O'Hara O'Connor
Law and human behavior, contracts, conflict of laws

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