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Jim Rossi

Judge D. L. Lansden Chair in Law

Jim Rossi is nationally recognized for his research on administrative and energy law topics. His recent articles focus on the role of public utility doctrines and principles in modern energy markets, as well as federalism and other shared jurisdictional issues affecting agency regulation. His article, "Energy Exactions," co-authored with Christopher Serkin, received the 2020 Morrison Prize, which recognizes the most impactful sustainability scholarship published during the previous year. His books include Energy, Economics and the Environment (5th edition 2020, co-authored with Joel Eisen, Emily Hammond, David Spence and Hannah Wiseman); Regulatory Bargaining and Public Law (2005); and a 2010 collection of essays, Dual Enforcement of Constitutional Norms: The New Frontier of State Constitutionalism, co-edited with James Gardner. Professor Rossi serves on the Advisory Council of the Electric Power Research Institute, an independent research consortium that helps address technology gaps and broader social needs that can benefit from groundbreaking energy research. He was a consultant to the Administrative Conference of the United States' Committee on Collaborative Governance project on Improving Coordination of Related Agency Responsibilities, which resulted in a set of recommendations adopted by the conference on how agencies should coordinate. Before joining Vanderbilt's law faculty, he was the Harry M. Walborsky Professor and associate dean for research at Florida State University College of Law. Rossi has also taught as a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, the University of Texas School of Law and the University of North Carolina School of Law. Before entering the legal academy, he practiced energy law in Washington, D.C. Rossi was the law school's 2013-14 FedEx Research Professor and was named to the Judge D.L. Lansden Chair in Law in 2018. He served as associate dean for research from 2017 to 2020.

Research Interests

Energy law, administrative law, regulatory federalism, state constitutions

Area(s) of Expertise

Energy and environmental law, administrative law

Representative Publications

  • Energy, Economics and the Environment: Cases and Materials, Foundation Press (5th edition, 2020) (with Joel Eisen, Emily Hammond, David Spence and Hannah Wiseman)
  • "Energy Exactions," 104 Cornell Law Review 643 (2019) (with Chris Serkin). Winner of the 2020 Morrison Prize.
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN
  • "Carbon Taxation by Regulation," 107 Minnesota Law Review 277 (2017)
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN | BEPRESS | PDF
  • "Dynamic Incorporation of Federal Law," 77 Ohio State Law Journal 457 (2016)
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN | BEPRESS | PDF
  • "The Brave New Path of Energy Federalism," 95 Texas Law Review 399 (2016)
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN | BEPRESS | PDF
  • "Revitalizing Dormant Commerce Clause Review for Interstate Coordination," 100 Minnesota Law Review 129 (2015) (with Alexandra B. Klass)
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN | BEPRESS | PDF
  • "'Maladaptive' Federalism: Addressing the Structural Barriers to Interstate Coordination in Sustainability Initiatives," 64 Case Western Reserve Law Review 1759 (2014) (symposium)
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN | BEPRESS | PDF
  • "Electric Power 'Resource Shuffling' and Subnational Carbon Regulation: Looking Upstream for a Solution," 5 San Diego Journal of Energy & Climate Law 43 (2013-14) (with Andrew J.D. Smith) (symposium)
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN | BEPRESS | PDF
  • "Federal Preemption and Clean Energy Floors," 91 North Carolina Law Review 1285 (2013) (with Thomas Hutton)
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  • "Agency Coordination in Shared Regulatory Space," 125 Harvard Law Review 1131 (2012) (with Jody Freeman)
    Full Text | SSRN | HEIN | BEPRESS | PDF