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Full-Text Articles in Law

Gamestop And The Reemergence Of The Retail Investor, Jill E. Fisch Oct 2022

Gamestop And The Reemergence Of The Retail Investor, Jill E. Fisch

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

The GameStop trading frenzy in January 2021 was perhaps the highest profile example of the reemergence of capital market participation by retail investors, a marked shift from the growing domination of those markets by large institutional investors. Some commentators have greeted retail investing, which has been fueled by app-based brokerage accounts and social media, with alarm and called for regulatory reform. The goals of such reforms are twofold. First, critics argue that retail investors need greater protection from the risks of investing in the stock market. Second, they argue that the stock market, in term, needs protection from retail investors. …


Can Micropolitan Areas Bridge The Urban/Rural Divide?, Sheila Foster, Clayton P. Gillette Sep 2022

Can Micropolitan Areas Bridge The Urban/Rural Divide?, Sheila Foster, Clayton P. Gillette

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

There exists a well-known and significant divide between urban and rural areas in the United States. The divide has been documented along multiple dimensions – social, economic, and political – and is seen as a detrimental characteristic of our national identity and capacity for both economic development and civil political discourse. In this Article, we explore a subset of the urban/rural divide and propose a mechanism for reducing its economic and political effects within that limited realm. Specifically, we focus on the subset of rural areas that lie within what the Office of Management and Budget defines as micropolitan areas. …


Purpose Proposals, Jill E. Fisch Sep 2022

Purpose Proposals, Jill E. Fisch

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Repurposing the corporation is the hot issue in corporate governance. Commentators, investors and increasingly issuers, maintain that corporations should shift their focus from maximizing profits for shareholders to generating value for a more expansive group of stakeholders. Corporations are also being called upon to address societal concerns – from climate change and voting rights to racial justice and wealth inequality.

The shareholder proposal rule, Rule 14a–8, offers one potential tool for repurposing the corporation. This Article describes the introduction of innovative proposals seeking to formalize corporate commitments to stakeholder governance. These “purpose proposals” reflect a new dynamic in the debate …


Selling Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Aug 2022

Selling Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Antitrust enforcers and its other defenders have never done a good job of selling their field to the public. That is not entirely their fault. Antitrust is inherently technical, and a less engaging discipline to most people than, say, civil rights or criminal law. The more serious problem is that when the general press does talk about antitrust policy it naturally gravitates toward the fringes, both the far right and the far left. Extreme rhetoric makes for better press than the day-to-day operations of a technical enterprise. The extremes are often stated in overdramatized black-and-white terms that avoid the real …


President Biden's Executive Order On Promoting Competition: An Antitrust Analysis, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jul 2022

President Biden's Executive Order On Promoting Competition: An Antitrust Analysis, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

In July, 2021, President Biden signed a far ranging Executive Order directed to promoting competition in the American economy. This paper analyzes issues covered by the Order that are most likely to affect the scope and enforcement of antitrust law. The only passage that the Executive Order quoted from a Supreme Court antitrust decision captures its antitrust ideology well – that the Sherman Act:

rests on the premise that the unrestrained interaction of competitive forces will yield the best allocation of our economic resources, the lowest prices, the highest quality and the greatest material progress, while at the same time …


Protecting The Sovereign's Money Monopoly, Gary B. Gordon, Jeffery Zhang Jul 2022

Protecting The Sovereign's Money Monopoly, Gary B. Gordon, Jeffery Zhang

Law & Economics Working Papers

Sovereign states have had a monopoly over the production of circulating currencies for well over a century. Governments, not private entities, issue circulating currencies. Indeed, in 1986, Milton Friedman and Anna Schwartz declared that “[t]he question of government monopoly of hand-to-hand currency is likely to remain a largely dead issue.” The advent of stablecoins—privately issued digital money that are pegged to fiat currencies like the U.S. dollar or the Euro—raises the question of the money monopoly from the grave.

Why did sovereign money monopolies come into existence in the 19th and 20th centuries? Should circulating private money coexist once again …


Color Of Creatorship - Author's Response, Anjali Vats Jul 2022

Color Of Creatorship - Author's Response, Anjali Vats

Articles

This essay is the author's response to three reviews of The Color of Creatorship written by notable intellectual property scholars and published in the IP Law Book Review.


Too Much Of A Good Thing? A Governing Knowledge Commons Review Of Abundance In Context, Michael J. Madison, Brett M. Frischmann, Madelyn Sanfilippo, Katherine J. Strandburg Jul 2022

Too Much Of A Good Thing? A Governing Knowledge Commons Review Of Abundance In Context, Michael J. Madison, Brett M. Frischmann, Madelyn Sanfilippo, Katherine J. Strandburg

Articles

The economics of abundance, along with the sociology of abundance, the law of abundance, and so forth, should be re-framed, linked, and situated in a common context for empirical rather than conceptual research. Abundance may seem to be a new, big thing, between anxiety over information overload, Big Data, and related technological disruptions. But scholars know that abundance is an ancient phenomenon, which only seemed to disappear as twentieth century social science focused on scarcity instead. Restoring the study of abundance, and figuring out how to solve the problems that abundance might create, means shedding disciplinary blinders and going back …


A Hague Parallel Proceedings Convention: Architecture And Features, Paul Herrup, Ronald A. Brand Jul 2022

A Hague Parallel Proceedings Convention: Architecture And Features, Paul Herrup, Ronald A. Brand

Articles

In Paul Herrup and Ronald A. Brand, A Hague Convention on Parallel Proceedings, 63 Harvard International Law Journal Online 1(2022), available at https://harvardilj.org/2022/02/a-hague-convention-on-parallel-proceedings/ and https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3894502, we argued that the Hague Conference on Private International Law should not undertake a project to require or prohibit exercise of original jurisdiction in national courts. Rather, the goal of current efforts should be to improve the concentration of parallel litigation in a “better forum,” in order to achieve efficient and complete resolution of disputes in transnational litigation. The Hague Conference is now taking this path. As the Experts Group and Working Group …


Municipal Fiber In The United States: A Financial Assessment, Christopher S. Yoo, Jesse Lambert, Timothy P. Pfenninger Jun 2022

Municipal Fiber In The United States: A Financial Assessment, Christopher S. Yoo, Jesse Lambert, Timothy P. Pfenninger

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Despite growing interest in broadband provided by municipally owned and operated fiber-to-the-home networks, the academic literature has yet to undertake a systematic assessment of these projects’ financial performance. To fill this gap, we utilize municipalities’ official reports to offer an empirical evaluation of the financial performance of every municipal fiber project in the U.S. operating in 2010 through 2019. An analysis of the actual performance of the resulting fifteen-project panel dataset reveals that none of the projects generated sufficient nominal cash flow in the short run to maintain solvency without infusions of additional cash from outside sources or debt relief. …


Antitrust Liability For False Advertising: A Response To Carrier & Tushnet, Susannah Gagnon, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jun 2022

Antitrust Liability For False Advertising: A Response To Carrier & Tushnet, Susannah Gagnon, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

This reply briefly considers when false advertising can give rise to antitrust liability. The biggest difference between tort and antitrust liability is that the latter requires harm to the market, which is critically dependent on actual consumer response. As a result, the biggest hurdle a private plaintiff faces in turning an act of false advertising into an antitrust offense is proof of causation – to what extent can a decline in purchase volume or other market rejection be specifically attributed to the defendant’s false claims? That requirement dooms the great majority of false advertising claims attacked as violations of the …


The Slogans And Goals Of Antitrust Law, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jun 2022

The Slogans And Goals Of Antitrust Law, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

This is a comparative examination of the slogans and goals most advocated for antitrust law today – namely, that antitrust should be concerned with “bigness,” that it should intervene when actions undermine the “competitive process,” or that it should be concerned about promoting some conception of welfare. “Bigness” as an antitrust concern targets firms based on absolute size rather than share of a market, as antitrust traditionally has done. The bigness approach entails that antitrust cannot be concerned about low prices, or the welfare of consumers and labor. Nondominant firms could not sustain very high prices or cause significant reductions …


Government By Code? Blockchain Applications To Public Sector Governance, Pedro Bustamante, Meina Cai, Marcela Gomez, Colin Harris, Prashabnt Krishnamurthy, Wilson Law, Michael J. Madison, Ilia Murtazashvili, Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili, Tymofiy Mylovanov, Nataliia Shapoval, Annette Vee, Martin B. H. Weiss Jun 2022

Government By Code? Blockchain Applications To Public Sector Governance, Pedro Bustamante, Meina Cai, Marcela Gomez, Colin Harris, Prashabnt Krishnamurthy, Wilson Law, Michael J. Madison, Ilia Murtazashvili, Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili, Tymofiy Mylovanov, Nataliia Shapoval, Annette Vee, Martin B. H. Weiss

Articles

Studies of blockchain governance can be divided into analyses of the governance of blockchains (such as rules and power dynamics within a given network) and governance by blockchains (such as how blockchains can be implemented to improve self-governance of community-based peer production networks). Less emphasis has been placed on applications of distributed ledgers to public sector governance. Our review clarifies that the decentralization and distributive features that enable blockchains to link up loosely connected private organizations and public agencies to improve efficiency and transparency of government transactions. However, most blockchain applications lack clear advantages over the conventional digital recording of …


A Lesson From Startups: Contracting Out Of Shareholder Appraisal, Jill E. Fisch Jun 2022

A Lesson From Startups: Contracting Out Of Shareholder Appraisal, Jill E. Fisch

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Appraisal is a controversial topic. Policymakers have debated the goals served by the appraisal remedy, and legislatures have repeatedly revised appraisal statutes in an effort to meet those goals while minimizing the cost and potential abuse associated with appraisal litigation. Courts have struggled to determine the most appropriate valuation methodology and the extent to which that methodology should depend on case-specific factors. These difficulties are exacerbated by variation in the procedures by which mergers are negotiated and the potential for conflict-of-interest transactions.

Private ordering offers a market-based alternative to continued legislative or judicial efforts to refine the appraisal remedy. Through …


The Role Of Data For Ai Startup Growth, James Bessen, Stephen Michael Impink, Lydia Reichensperger, Robert Seamans Jun 2022

The Role Of Data For Ai Startup Growth, James Bessen, Stephen Michael Impink, Lydia Reichensperger, Robert Seamans

Faculty Scholarship

Artificial intelligence (“AI”)-enabled products are expected to drive economic growth. Training data are important for firms developing AI-enabled products; without training data, firms cannot develop or refine their algorithms. This is particularly the case for AI startups developing new algorithms and products. However, there is no consensus in the literature on which aspects of training data are most important. Using unique survey data of AI startups, we find that startups with access to proprietary training data are more likely to acquire venture capital funding.


Written Testimony Of Philip Hackney For The Hearing On Laws And Enforcement Governing The Political Activities Of Tax-Exempt Entities (U.S. Senate Finance Committee Subcommittee On Taxation And Irs Oversight, May 4, 2022), Philip Hackney May 2022

Written Testimony Of Philip Hackney For The Hearing On Laws And Enforcement Governing The Political Activities Of Tax-Exempt Entities (U.S. Senate Finance Committee Subcommittee On Taxation And Irs Oversight, May 4, 2022), Philip Hackney

Testimony

Are tax laws and IRS enforcement up to the task of overseeing the tax issues associated with the political activities of tax-exempt organizations? Though the tax laws governing the tax-exempt realm are wanting, our overall legal structure is not bad. It is justifiable at least. Where we fall down as a nation in this space is in the enforcement. We do not allocate enough resources to this arena, and we do not institutionally offer the support necessary to enforce these laws. These failures do not favor one party over the other but favor those interests in the country with the …


Police Frisks, David S. Abrams, Hanming Fang, Priyanka Goonetilleke May 2022

Police Frisks, David S. Abrams, Hanming Fang, Priyanka Goonetilleke

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

The standard economic model of police stops implies that the contraband hit rate should rise when the number of stops falls, ceteris paribus. We provide empirical corroboration of such optimizing models of police behavior by examining changes in stops and frisks around two extraordinary events of 2020 - the pandemic onset and the nationwide protests following the killing of George Floyd. We find that hit rates from pedestrian and vehicle stops generally rose as stops and frisks fell dramatically. Using detailed data, we are able to rule out a number of alternative explanations, including changes in street population, crime, police …


Digital Cluster Markets, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Apr 2022

Digital Cluster Markets, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

This paper considers the role of “cluster” markets in antitrust litigation, the minimum requirements for recognizing such markets, and the relevance of network effects in identifying them.

One foundational requirement of markets in antitrust cases is that they consist of products that are very close substitutes for one another. Even though markets are nearly always porous, this principle is very robust in antitrust analysis and there are few deviations.

Nevertheless, clustering noncompeting products into a single market for purposes of antitrust analysis can be valuable, provided that its limitations are understood. Clustering contributes to market power when (1) many customers …


Ethical Ai Development: Evidence From Ai Startups, James Bessen, Stephen Michael Impink, Lydia Reichensperger, Robert Seamans Mar 2022

Ethical Ai Development: Evidence From Ai Startups, James Bessen, Stephen Michael Impink, Lydia Reichensperger, Robert Seamans

Faculty Scholarship

Artificial Intelligence startups use training data as direct inputs in product development. These firms must balance numerous trade-offs between ethical issues and data access without substantive guidance from regulators or existing judicial precedence. We survey these startups to determine what actions they have taken to address these ethical issues and the consequences of those actions. We find that 58% of these startups have established a set of AI principles. Startups with data-sharing relationships with high-technology firms; that were impacted by privacy regulations; or with prior (non-seed) funding from institutional investors are more likely to establish ethical AI principles. Lastly, startups …


Plus Politics: Tackling The Eia Impact Gap, Columbia Center On Sustainable Investment Feb 2022

Plus Politics: Tackling The Eia Impact Gap, Columbia Center On Sustainable Investment

Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment Staff Publications

PLUS POLITICS is a multi-part series of briefs from the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment that aims to encourage practitioners to apply a more systematic political lens to their work on governance in the extractive industries. Each brief will deal with a key governance issue and will provide a brief analysis of its political challenges and practical recommendations to address them.


Worker Welfare And Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2022

Worker Welfare And Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

The important field of antitrust and labor has gone through a profound change in orientation. For the great bulk of its history labor has been viewed as a competitive threat, and the debate over antitrust and labor was framed around whether there should be a labor “immunity” from the antitrust laws. In just the last decade, however, the orientation has flipped. Most new writing views labor as a target of anticompetitive restraints imposed by employers. Antitrust is increasingly concerned with protecting labor rather than challenging its conduct.

Antitrust interest in labor markets is properly focused on two things. The smaller …


Leases As Forms, David A. Hoffman, Anton Strezhnev Jan 2022

Leases As Forms, David A. Hoffman, Anton Strezhnev

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

We offer the first large scale descriptive study of residential leases, based on a dataset of ~170,000 residential leases filed in support of over ~200,000 Philadelphia eviction proceedings from 2005 through 2019. These leases are highly likely to contain unenforceable terms, and their pro-landlord tilt has increased sharply over time. Matching leases with individual tenant characteristics, we show that unlawful terms are surprisingly likely to be associated with more expensive leaseholds in richer, whiter parts of the city. This result is linked to landlords' growing adoption of shared forms, originally created by non-profit landlord associations, and more recently available online …


Bilski And The Information Age A Decade Later, Michael J. Meurer Jan 2022

Bilski And The Information Age A Decade Later, Michael J. Meurer

Faculty Scholarship

In the years from State Street in 1999 to Alice in 2014, legal scholars vigorously debated whether patents should be used to incentivize the invention of business methods. That attention has waned just as economists have produced important new research on the topic, and just as artificial intelligence and cloud computing are changing the nature of business method innovation. This chapter rejoins the debate and concludes that the case for patent protection of business methods is weaker now than it was a decade ago.


The Progressives' Antitrust Toolbox, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2022

The Progressives' Antitrust Toolbox, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

The period 1900 to 1930 was the Golden Age of antitrust theory, if not of enforcement. During that period courts and scholars developed nearly all of the tools that we use to this day to assess anticompetitive practices under the federal antitrust laws. In subsequent years antitrust policy veered to both the left and the right, but today seems to be returning to a position quite similar to the one that these Progressive adopted. Their principal contributions were (1) partial equilibrium analysis, which became the basis for concerns about economic concentration, the distinction between short- and long-run analysis, and later …


Monopolizing And The Sherman Act, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2022

Monopolizing And The Sherman Act, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

In one sentence § 2 of the Sherman Act condemns firms who “monopolize,” “attempt to monopolize” or “combine or conspire” to monopolize -- all without explanation. Section 2 is the antitrust law’s only provision that reaches entirely unilateral conduct, although it has often been used to reach collaborative conduct as well. In general, §2 requires greater amounts of individually held market power than do the other antitrust statutes, but it is less categorical about conduct. With one exception, however, the statute reads so broadly that criticisms of the nature that it is outdated cannot be based on faithful readings of …


Third Party Moral Hazard And The Problem Of Insurance Externalities, Gideon Parchomovsky, Peter Siegelman Jan 2022

Third Party Moral Hazard And The Problem Of Insurance Externalities, Gideon Parchomovsky, Peter Siegelman

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Insurance can lead to loss or claim-creation not just by insureds themselves, but also by uninsured third parties. These externalities—which we term “third party moral hazard”—arise because insurance creates opportunities both to extract rents and to recover for otherwise unrecoverable losses. Using examples from health, automobile, kidnap, and liability insurance, we demonstrate that the phenomenon is widespread and important, and that the downsides of insurance are greater than previously believed. We explain the economic, social and psychological reasons for this phenomenon, and propose policy responses. Contract-based methods that are traditionally used to control first-party moral hazard can be welfare-reducing in …


The Kind Of Solution A Smart City Is: Knowledge Commons And Postindustrial Pittsburgh, Michael J. Madison Jan 2022

The Kind Of Solution A Smart City Is: Knowledge Commons And Postindustrial Pittsburgh, Michael J. Madison

Book Chapters

This case study brings new attention to a critical but under-appreciated dimension of so-called “smart” cities: how smart city governance builds and relies on institutionalized sharing of data, information, and other forms of knowledge across all sectors of public administration. Those smart city practices are referred to here as knowledge commons and systematized using the Governing Knowledge Commons (GKC) research framework. That framework extends and modifies Ostrom’s research tradition as to community-based resource governance. As with other GKC-focused research, this work relies on a qualitative case study. It draws a detailed, context-specific portrait of a smart city as knowledge commons …


Tax And Time: On The Use And Misuse Of Legal Imagination, Anthony C. Infanti Jan 2022

Tax And Time: On The Use And Misuse Of Legal Imagination, Anthony C. Infanti

Book Chapters

In daily life and in tax law, time is taken for granted as something that is ever present but beyond our control. Time moves endlessly and relentlessly forward, constantly slipping from our grasp. But what if life were more like science fiction? What if we could, at will, move through time to alter its course? Or what if we could harness time by turning it into an exchangeable commodity, truly using time as money? In fact, there is no need to open a novel or watch a movie to experience time travel or to see time used as a medium …


Blockchain Networks As Knowledge Commons, Ilia Murtazashvili, Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili, Martin B. H. Weiss, Michael J. Madison Jan 2022

Blockchain Networks As Knowledge Commons, Ilia Murtazashvili, Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili, Martin B. H. Weiss, Michael J. Madison

Articles

Researchers interested in blockchains are increasingly attuned to questions of governance, including how blockchains relate to government, the ways blockchains are governed, and ways blockchains can improve prospects for successful self-governance. Our paper joins this research by exploring the implications of the Governing Knowledge Commons (GKC) framework to analyze governance of blockchains. Our novel contributions are making the case that blockchain networks represent knowledge commons governance, in the sense that they rely on collectively-managed technologies to pool and manage distributed information, illustrating the usefulness and novelty of the GCK methodology with an empirical case study of the evolution of Bitcoin, …


Nazi Stolen Art: Uses And Misuses Of The Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, Vivian Grosswald Curran Jan 2022

Nazi Stolen Art: Uses And Misuses Of The Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, Vivian Grosswald Curran

Articles

U.S. courts in Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (“FSIA”) cases must interpret a comprehensive statute which has been said to stand or fall on its terms. At the same time, in Nazi-looted art cases, they do not ignore entirely the backdrop of the U.S.’ adoption of international principles and declarations promising to ensure the return of such art. To some extent, such an undertaking has been incorporated into a statutory amendment of the FSIA. The years 2021 and 2022 have seen major developments in the FSIA both at the U.S. Supreme Court and in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in …