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Every year the Center for Tax Law and Policy invites a selection of the nation’s leading tax scholars to present their best new work in the Center’s Tax Policy Seminar Series. The series also invites prominent tax policy personnel from nearby Washington D.C. to talk about the practical application of policy principles.

Seminars are announced by email invitation. Papers are posted ahead of time. Penn Law students play a vital role in the seminar and those wishing to attend may register for Law School’s Tax Policy Seminar. Those wishing to be added to the email invitation list-including Penn students who have not signed up for the class-should email Anna Gavin at

For a list of current Seminars, click here.

Spring 2011

January 26 Professor Lawrence Zelenak, Duke Law School
“Learning to Love the Form 1040: Two Cheers for the Return-Based Mass Income Tax”
February 9 Professor Seth Giertz, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Saez, Slemrod, & Giertz, “The Elasticity of Taxable Income with Respect to Marginal Tax Rates: A Critical Review”
February 23 Professor Leonard Burman, Syracuse University
Topic: Tax Expenditures and Budgeting
March 16 Professor Lee Anne Fennell, University of Chicago Law School “Willpower Taxes”
April 6 Professor Edward Kleinbard, USC Law School
Topic: Stateless Income
April 20 Professor Judith Freedman, Oxford Law
Topic: Anti-Avoidance Rules
April 21 Stephen Shay, Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Tax Affairs, U.S. Treasury Department.
Date likely to be rescheduled.

Spring 2010

January 27 Professor Dan Shaviro, NYU Law School
“The Case Against Foreign Tax Credits”
February 24 Professor Deborah Schenk, NYU Law School
“Salience and Tax Design”
March 17 Professor Anne Alstott, Harvard Law School
“Why the EITC Doesn’t Make Work Pay.”
April 7 Professor Joel Slemrod, Univ. of Michigan, Business School
“Buenas Notches: Lines, Line Elasticities, and Notches in Optimal Tax Theory.”
April 14 Professor Brian Galle, Florida State Univ, College of Law
Topic: Timing mismatches and low-income taxpayers
April 21
12:00-1:20 pm
Professor John Friedman, Harvard Kennedy School
“Adjustment Costs, Firm Responses, and Labor Supply Elasticities: Evidence from Danish Tax Records” with Raj Chetty, Tore Olsen, and Luigi Pistaferri.

Fall 2008

October 1 Mark Gergen, Berkeley
Topic: Why Strong Third Party Penalties are an Essential Tool for
Discouraging Taxpayers from Taking Aggressive Positions in Reporting on Matters of Factual or Legal Uncertainty.
October 15 Rosanne Altshuler, Dept. of Econ, Rutgers
Topic: Reconsidering Tax Expenditure Estimation: Challenges and Reforms (w/ Robert D. Dietz)
October 29 George Yin, Virginia
Topic: Temporary-Effect Legislation, Political Accountability, and Fiscal Restraint
November 12 Ruth Mason, Connecticut
Topic: Welfare, Tax Incentives and Labor Mobility
December 3 Alex Raskolnikov, Columbia Law School
Topic: TBD

Fall 2007

October 3 David Hasen, Michigan
The Taxation of Advance Receipts 
October 17 David Gamage, Berkeley
Balance Budget Constraints and Fiscal Volatility 
October 31 Nancy Staudt, Northwestern
The Ideological Component of Judging in the Taxation Context 
November 14 Kirk Stark, UCLA
Rich States, Poor States: American Federalism and the Politics of Fiscal Equalization
November 27 Hon. Mark. V. Holmes, U.S. Tax Court
December 5 James Hines, Michigan
Reconsidering the Taxation of Foreign Income

Spring 2007

January 18 Joel Slemrod, University of Michigan
The Economics of Tax Remittance
February 8 Linda Sugin, Fordham Law School
Why Endowment Taxation is Unjust
February 22 Reuven Avi-Yonah, University of Michigan Law School
International Tax
March 15 Dan Shaviro, NYU Law School
Permanent Income and the Annual Income Tax
March 22 Richard T. Morrison, Deputy Assistant Attorney General
April 5 Joseph Bankman, Stanford Law School
California’s Ready Return Program
April 19 Anup Malani, University of Chicago Law School
The Case for For-Profit Charities (w/ Eric Posner)

Spring 2006

January 17 Anne Alstott & Benjamin Novick
Tax Cuts in the 1920s: Fact or Fiction?
January 31 Daniel Halperin,
As to Taxation of Charities - The Issue is Investment Income
February 14 Alan Auerbach,
Tax Policy and the Budget
February 28 Lily Batchelder
Refundable Credits
March 21 Alex Raskolnikov
Tax Shelter Penalties
April 6 Eric Solomon, Acting Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy, U.S. Treasury
April 11 Mitchell Kane
Ownership Neutrality, Ownership Distortions, and International Tax Welfare Benchmarks

Fall 2004

September 23 Dorothy Brown, Washington and Lee
The Tax Treatment of Children: Separate but Unequal
October 21 David Bradford, Princeton and NYU
The X Tax in the World Economy: Going Global with a Simple, Progressive Tax
October 28 David Weisbach, Chicago
The Optimal Accounting Period for Taxes
November 4 George Yin, Chief of Staff, Joint Committee on Taxation, U.S. Congress
November 11 Edward McCaffery, USC and Caltech
Thinking about Tax, with Jonathan Baron
December 2 Larry Zelenak, Duke
The Taxation of Risk under a Progressive Tax

Spring 2003

January 29 Mitchell Engler, Cardozo
Simplifying the Transition to a (Progressive) Consumption Tax
February 12 Victor Fleischer, Columbia
The Rationale Exuberance of Structuring Venture Capital Startups
February 26 Todd Sinai, Wharton
The Asset Price Incidence of Capital Gains Taxes: Evidence from the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 and Publicly Traded Real Estate Firms
March 19 Terry Chorvat, George Mason
Behavioral Economics and the Realization Requirement
April 2 Elizabeth Chorvat, George Mason
Behavioral Finance and Corporate Inversions
April 23 Pamela Olson, Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy, U.S. Treasury

Spring 2002

January 22 Michael Livingston, Rutgers-Camden
Blum and Kalven at 50: Progressive Taxation, “Globalization,” and the New Millenium
February 5 Mitchell Engler, Cardozo
A Progressive Consumption Tax for Individuals
February 19 David Schizer, Columbia
Frictions as a Constraint on Tax Planning
March 5 Christopher Mayer, Wharton
Land Supply, House Price Capitalization and Local Spending on Schools
March 26 Eileen O’Connor, Assistant Attorney General
Corporate Tax Shelters
April 9 Herwig Schlunk, Vanderbilt
I Come Not to Praise the Corporate Tax But to Save It