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David Arthur Skeel

S. Samuel Arsht Professor of Corporate Law

David Skeel

David Skeel is the author of The New Financial Deal: Understanding the Dodd-Frank Act and Its (Unintended) Consequences (Wiley, 2011), Icarus in the Boardroom (Oxford, 2005) and Debt’s Dominion: A History of Bankruptcy Law in America (Princeton, 2001), as well as numerous articles and other publications. He has been interviewed on The News Hour, Nightline, Chris Matthews’ Hardball (MSNBC), National Public Radio, and Marketplace, among others, and has been quoted in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post and other newspapers and magazines. Continue reading…


  • Corporations
  • Bankruptcy
  • Religion and the Law


[Available Here]

BANKRUPTCY (Foundation Press 9th ed., 2012) (with William Warren and Daniel J. Bussel).

IS U.S. GOVERNMENT DEBT DIFFERENT? (FIC Press, 2012) (with Franklin Allen, Anna Gelpern and Charles Mooney).

[Available Here]

Articles and Book Chapters

Single Point of Entry and the Bankruptcy Alternative, in ACROSS THE GREAT DIVIDE: NEW PERSPECTIVES ON THE FINANCIAL CRISIS (Hoover Institution, 2014).

Corporate Governance and Social Welfare in the Common Law World. 92 TEX. L. REV. 973 (2014).

Behaviorism in Finance and Securities Law, 21 SUP. CT. ECON. REV. 77.

When Should Bankruptcy Be an Option (for People, Places or Things)?, 55 WM. & MARY L. REV. 2217 (2014)

Panel Discussion on Stability, Resolution, and Dodd-Frank, in PERSPECTIVES ON DODD-FRANK AND FINANCE (Paul H. Schultz ed., MIT Press 2014) (with James R. Barth, John Dearie, and Arthur Wilmarth).

Can Pensions Be Restructured in (Detroit’s) Municipal Bankruptcy? (The Federalist Society, White Paper Series, October 2013).

The Mosaic Law in Christian Perspective, LAW AND THE BIBLE: JUSTICE, MERCY AND LEGAL INSTITUTIONS (Robert F. Cochran Jr. & David VanDrunen eds., 2013) (with Tremper Longman).

Institutional Choice in an Economic Crisis, 2013 WIS. L. REV. 629

Bankruptcy Law as a Liquidity Provider, 80 U. CHI. L. REV. 1557 (2013) (with Kenneth Ayotte).

Is Bankruptcy the Answer for Troubled Cities and States?, 50 HOUS. L. REV. 1063 (2013).

Bankruptcy and Economic Recovery, in RESTRUCTURING FINANCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE TO SPEED RECOVERY (eds. Martin Neil Baily, Yuta Seki, & Richard Herring, 2013) (with Thomas Jackson).

Dynamic Resolution of Large Financial Institutions, 2 HARV. BUS. L. REV. 435 (2012) (with Thomas H. Jackson).

Hauerwasian Christian Legal Theory, 75 LAW & CONTEMP. PROBS. 115 (2012).

Transaction Consistency and the New Finance in Bankruptcy, 112 COLUM. L. REV. 152 (2012) (with Thomas Jackson).

States of Bankruptcy, 79 U. CHI. L. REV. 677 (2012).

Introduction: Appreciating Bill Stuntz (with Michael J. Klarman & Carol S. Steiker), in THE POLITICAL HEART OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE: ESSAYS ON THEMES OF WILLIAM J. STUNTZ, Cambridge University Press, 2012 (co-editor with Michael J. Klarman & Carol S. Steiker).

Assessing the Chrysler Bankruptcy, 108 MICH. L. REV. 727 (2010), reprinted in 52 CORP. PRAC. COMMENTATOR 1 (2010) (with Mark Roe).

Bankruptcy or Bailouts?, 35 J. CORP. L. 469 (2010) (with Kenneth Ayotte).

The Unbearable Lightness of Christian Scholarship, 57 EMORY L.J. 1471 (2008).

The Promise and Perils of Credit Derivatives, 75 U. CIN. L. REV. 1019 (2007) (with Frank Partnoy).

Christianity of the (Modest) Rule of Law, 8 U. PA. J. CONST. L. 809 (2006) (with William Stuntz).

More publications can be found here.

Working Papers

From Chrysler and General Motors to Detroit, 19 WIDENER L. REV. (forthcoming 2015). (forthcoming 2015)
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What is a Lien? Lessons from Municipal Bankruptcy, U. ILL. L. REV. 2014 (forthcoming) (forthcoming 2014)
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A Theory of Law Firm Globalization (unpublished manuscript, 2008) (with John Armour)

Why Do Distressed Companies Choose Delaware? An Empirical Analysis of Venue Choice in Bankruptcy, (U of Penn, Inst for Law & Econ Research Paper No. 03-29, October 2004) (with Kenneth Ayotte).
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Research Areas

  • Christianity and the Law
  • Corporate Law
  • Bankruptcy
  • Debt Relief and Sovereign Bankruptcy
  • Law and Religion
  • Law and Poetry


Penn Law - S. Samuel Arsht Professor of Corporate Law (2004- ); Professor of Law (1999-2003)

Member, European Corporate Governance Institute (2007- ); American College of Bankruptcy (2009- )

Visiting Professor - Georgetown, University of Virginia, University of Wisconsin

Temple - Associate Professor of Law (1993-98); Assistant Professor (1990-93)

Professional Activities

Executive Board of American Association of Law Schools Committee on Business Associations (2007-2010)

Research Associate, European Corporate Governance Institute (since 2006)

Member, American College of Bankruptcy (since 2009)

Board of Trustees, Consumer Bankruptcy Assistance Project, Philadelphia, PA (2000-2006)


  • Corporations
  • Bankruptcy
  • Debt Relief and Sovereign Debt Restructuring
  • Law, Literature, and Interpretation
  • Christian Perspectives on Law

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