Shavell to receive award from American Law and Economics Association

The American Law and Economics Association announced at its annual meeting on May 17 that Professor Steven Shavell will be the 2014 recipient of the Ronald H. Coase Medal. Shavell is the Samuel R. Rosenthal Professor of Law and Economics and director of the John M. Olin Center for Law, Economics and Business at Harvard Law School.

The medal, established by the American Law and Economics Association in 2010, is awarded in recognition of major contributions to the field of law and economics. The bi-annual award, named in honor Ronald Coase, who won the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1991, was given to Judge Richard A. Posner, in 2010, and Judge Guido Calabresi, in 2012. Recipients’ lectures are published in the American Law and Economics Review.

Said Harvard Law School Dean Martha Minow: “The peer recognition embodied in the Coase Medal is as good as it comes—and that is why it is so wonderful to see it awarded to Steve Shavell. He’s as good as they come and his work illuminates field after field of law through thoughtful and rigorous use of economic analysis.”

Shavell is an expert on the economic analysis of the basic subject areas of law—contracts, torts, property, and criminal law. He served on the faculty of the Department of Economics at Harvard University for six years before joining the Harvard Law School faculty in 1980. Shavell is a past director of the Law and Economics Program of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and a co-founder and past president of the American Law and Economics Association.

After graduating from the University of Michigan in 1968, he was an officer in the U.S. Public Health Service at the Centers for Disease Control from 1968 to 1970, and obtained a Ph.D. in economics from M.I.T. in 1973.

Shavell is the author of numerous articles and several books, including “Foundations of Economic Analysis of Law” (Harvard University Press, 2004) and “Economic Analysis of Accident Law” (Harvard University Press, 1987).

The American Law and Economics Association is dedicated to the advancement of economic understanding of law and related areas of public policy and regulation. Founded in 1991, the membership includes academic and practicing lawyers and economists. The association holds an annual two-day meeting in May at which members present papers dealing with a wide variety of topics concerning the interrelation of law and economics. Since 1999, the Association has published the American Law and Economics Review, a refereed journal.