NYU Law Review leads effort to revitalize legal scholarship online
A three-year effort by the editors of seven top law journals culminated with the April launch of the Legal Workshop, an online magazine featuring ideas found in the law reviews of NYU, Cornell, Duke, Georgetown, Northwestern, Stanford, and the University of Chicago.
The intent is to provide free legal scholarship in a readable, accessible format, said Matthew Lawrence ’09, former managing editor of the NYU Law Review, whose efforts were integral to the Web site’s launch. The Legal Workshop presents short, plain-English articles written by an author whose related, full-length work of scholarship appears in one of the participating law reviews. In June, Senior Circuit Judge Harry Edwards of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and a visiting professor at NYU School of Law, for instance, published an engaging editorial about judicial politics that uses personal experience to illustrate the ideas in a Duke Law Review article that he co-authored with Michael Livermore ’06, “Pitfalls of Empirical Studies That Attempt to Understand the Factors Affecting Appellate Decisionmaking.”
A not-for-profit joint venture, the Legal Workshop is operated by current and former student editors. The idea came about at a 2006 meeting of editors in chief of top law reviews who shared how they were struggling to make their individual Web sites viable. Erin Delaney ’07 embraced the idea of a collaboration, and the editors of the NYU Law Review took the lead in cutting through the legal red tape to form a multistate consortium of private and public entities. “It was a simple vision,” said Lawrence, “but it took a lot of hard work to make it happen.”