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Penn Law Tops Number of Corporate Faculty Publishing Top Ten Articles

June 02, 2011

Penn Law's business and corporate law faculty have dominated the 17th annual poll of the "Top Ten Corporate and Securities Articles of 2010," recently conducted by Corporate Practice Commentator. Articles by Professors William Bratton, Jill Fisch, Edward Rock, David Skeel, and Michael Wachter were among the top ten selected by corporate and securities law academics, which were chosen from more than 440 published and indexed in legal journals in 2010.

“Like last year, Penn Law was the first in the number of faculty publishing top ten business and corporate law articles, and I congratulate our five Penn Law professors on this achievement,” said Michael A. Fitts, Dean of Penn Law. “The Law School’s business and corporate law program is unrivaled among our peers. This latest accomplishment is indicative of our faculty’s expertise, for the benefit of Penn Law and the wider world.”

William Bratton
Michael Wachter

William Bratton and co-author Michael Wachter’s article, The Case Against Shareholder Empowerment, was published by the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. Bratton, a Professor of Law and Co-Director of the Law School’s Institute for Law and Economics (ILE), is recognized internationally as a leading writer on business law. Wachter, the William B. Johnson Prof. of Law and Economics and ILE Co-Director, is a prominent cross-disciplinary scholar with current research focusing on topics of the intersection of corporate law and finance. In their article, the authors argue that empowering shareholders of public companies only enforces company management to maximize the market price of its stock. The goal to increase shareholder value was one of the major causes of the global financial crisis. In short, the authors claim shareholders seek short-term returns rather than focusing on long-term company value.

Jill Fisch

Jill Fisch is a Professor of Law and Co-Director of ILE whose work focuses on the intersection of business and law, including the role of regulation and litigation in addressing limitations in the disciplinary power of the capital markets. Fisch and co-authors Stephen Choi and Marcel Kahan, both professors at New York University School of Law, were acknowledged for The Power of Proxy Advisors: Myth or Reality?, published by Emory Law Journal. The article focuses on the role of proxy advisors and how they influence shareholder voting outcomes.

Edward Rock

Edward Rock L’83, the Saul A. Fox Distinguished Professor of Business Law, writes on corporate law and corporate governance. His article, Embattled CEOs, co-authored with NYU’s Marcel Kahan in the Texas Law Review, addresses the declining power of chief executive officers of publicly-held corporations in the United States to their boards of directors and to their shareholders.


David SkeelDavid Skeel, the S. Samuel Arsht Professor of Corporate Law, writes on bankruptcy and corporate law and his article, Bankruptcy or bailouts?, co-authored with Kenneth Ayotte of Northwestern University School of Law for the Journal of Corporation Law, explores why bankruptcy would often be a better solution to the financial distress of large financial firms than the bailouts the government has used throughout the financial crisis. The authors highlight that although bankruptcy is not always the optimal response to financial distress, Chapter 11 is can be more effective than generally realized.

In addition, Penn Law Adjunct Professor of Law Leo Strine L'88 was selected for his article Loyalty's Core Demand: The Defining Role of Good Faith in Corporation Law for the Georgetown Law Journal, co-authored with Lawrence Hamermesh of Widener University School of Law, R. Franklin Balotti of Richards, Layton & Finger, and Jeffery Gorris of Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell, Attorneys At Law. The authors explore the role of good faith in corporate law, and question the duty of loyalty, and argue if the obligation of directors to act in good faith is a separate, free-standing fiduciary duty or a fundamental aspect of the core duty of loyalty.