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Scott Baker

Vice Dean for Research and Faculty Development and William F. & Jessica L. Kirsch Professor of Law

Professor Scott Baker is a prolific and widely-respected law and economics scholar. His research interests lie at the intersection of law, economics, and game theory. He tackles a wide range of topics from the optimal production of precedent to the relationship between legal and reputational sanctions for ensuring contractual performance to the impact of legal uncertainty on firm behavior to disclosure in the patent system. His co-authored works appear in the Journal of Political Economy, Journal of Legal Studies, Journal of Law and Economics, Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, and the Journal of Legal Analysis as well as numerous law reviews. In the fall of 2012, he served as a Becker-Friedman fellow at the University of Chicago. He is the recipient of a Tilburg University grant for studies in the law and economics of innovation. Before joining the faculty in 2009, Professor Baker was a professor of law and economics at the University of North Carolina, where he served as associate dean for faculty affairs and received the McCall Award for Law School Teacher of the Year. After graduating from law school, he obtained his Ph.D. in economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Professor Baker clerked for the Hon. E. Grady Jolly, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

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  • Education
    • Ph.D., (Economics) University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2001
    • J.D., University of Chicago, 2000
    • B.A., Miami University, 1994
  • Courses
    • Contracts
    • Patents
    • Survey of Intellectual Property
    • Torts
    • Corporations
    • Law and Economics
    • Topics in law and economics
    • Game Theory and the Law
    • Financial Literacy for Lawyers
  • Areas of Expertise
    • Contracts
    • Law and Economics
    • Judicial Behavior
    • Game Theory and the Law
  • Publications

    SSRN Author Page

    • Compromising accuracy to encourage regulatory participation (with Anup Malani), forthcoming at Journal of Legal Studies.
    • A theory of claim resolution (with Lewis Kornhauser), forthcoming at Journal of Law, Economics, & Organization.
    • Comment on judicial choice among cases for certiorari, Supreme Court Economic Review, 27:155-166, 2019.
    • Reputation and Litigation: Why Costly Legal Sanctions Can Work Better Than Reputational Sanctions (with Albert Choi),Journal of Legal Studies, 47(1):45-82, 2018.
    • Harmful, Harmless, and Beneficial Uncertainty in Law (with Alex Raskolnikov), Journal of Legal Studies 46 (2017), 281-307.
    • Toward a Theory of Motion Practice and Settlement, Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics 173 (2017), 144-162.
    • Appellate Law-Making in a Judicial Hierarchy (with Adam Badawi), Journal of Law and Economics 58 (2015), 139-172.
    • Contract’s Role in Relational Contract (with Albert Choi), Virginia Law Review 101 (2015), 559-607.
    • Trial Court Budgets, The Enforcer’s Dilemma, and the Rule of Law (with Anup Malani), University of Illinois Law Review 2014, 1574-1602.
    • A Model of Cause Lawyering (with Gary Biglaiser), Journal of Legal Studies 43 (2014), 37-63.
    • A Dynamic Model of Doctrinal Choice (with Pauline Kim), Journal of Legal Analysis 4 (2012), 329-363.
    • A Theory of Rational Jurisprudence (with Claudio Mezzetti), Journal of Political Economy 120 (2012), 513-551.
    • Intellectual Property Disclosure as “Threat” (with Claudio Mezzetti and Pak Yee Lee), International Journal of Economic Theory 21 (2011), 21-38.
    • Can the Courts Rescue Us from a Patent Crisis (book review), Texas Law Review 88 (2010), 593-610.
    • Refining the Judicial Pay/Judicial Performance Debate: A Response to Professors Cross, Czarnezki, Henderson, Marks, and Zorn, Boston University Law Review 88 (2008), 855 -873.
    • Should We Pay Federal Circuit Judges More?, Boston University Law Review 88 (2008), 63-112 (Data collection memo, datasets (including some corrections) and additional robustness checks available upon request).
    • Deterrence, Lawsuits, and Litigation Outcomes under Court Errors (with Maxim Nikitin, and Claudia Landeo), Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization 57 (2007), 57-97.
    • Incomplete Contracts in a Complete Contracts World (with Kim Krawiec), Florida State University Law Review 33 (2006), 725-756.
    • The Rat Race as an Information-Forcing Device (with Stephen Choi and Mitu Gulati), Indiana Law Review 81 (2006), 53-82.
    • Disclosure as a Strategy in a Patent Race (with Claudio Mezzetti), Journal of Law and Economics, 48 (2005), 173-194.
    • Fall from Grace or Business as Usual? A Retrospective Look at Lawyers on Wall Street and Main Street (with John Conley), Law and Social Inquiry 30 (2005), 783-821.
    • The Economics of Limited Liability: An Empirical Study of New York Law Firms (with Kim Kraweic), University of Illinois Law Review 2005, 107-170.
    • A Risk-Based Approach to Mandatory Arbitration, Oregon Law Review 83 (2004), 861-898.
    • The Penalty Default Canon (with Kim Krawiec), George Washington University Law Review 72 (2004), 663-723.
    • Prosecutorial Resources, Plea Bargaining, and the Decision to Go to Trial (with Claudio Mezzetti), Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization 17 (2001), 149-167.
    • Strategic Disclosure in the Patent System (with Doug Lichtman and Kate Kraus), Vanderbilt Law Review 53 (2000), 2175-2216.


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