Write on International Law? You Don’t Count.
The legal blogosphere is all abuzz about a new study of faculty productivity at law schools outside the US News top 50. Here, according to the study, are the top 10: San Diego, Cardozo, Florida State, Richmond, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago-Kent, Missouri, UNLV, and Brooklyn.
Some bloggers — see here and here, for example — think the study is a useful gauge of a law school’s scholarly culture. Maybe that’s true for some fields, but the study simply reaffirms the marginalization of international law in the American legal academy. According to the study, for example, international law professors are only productive if they publish in the main law review of an American law school or in the international law journals at Harvard and Virginia (both of which are excellent, of course). Publish with the American Journal of International Law, the Yale Journal of International Law, or the Columbia Journal of Transnational Law? You’re Jack Nicholson in The Shining. And don’t even think about those damn peer-reviewed foreign law journals, like the European Journal of International Law, the Journal of International Criminal Justice, or the Journal of International Economic Law. Don’t you have anything better to do, like building your World of Warcraft character?
It’s also worth noting that the study awards extra points for length — “0 points for articles under 6 pages; 1 point for articles 6-20 pages in length; 2 points for articles 21-50 pages in length; and 3 points for articles exceeding 50 pages.” So whatever you do, make sure to pad your articles as much as humanly possible. If you don’t, how can you consider yourself productive? Sure, many of the top international law journals — especially those ones in Europe that don’t matter — want you to limit your articles to under 12,000 words. But that’s just because Europeans don’t value hard work like the Americans do.