TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Friday, March 7, 2014

NYU's Tax Exceptionalism

NYU Logo (2013)Daniel N. Shaviro (NYU), Only at NYU Law School:

Perhaps I can be forgiven for a spasm of institutional chauvinism. There is no place like NYU Law School, in the U.S. or indeed around the world, for studying tax law and policy. A case in point today came from an event [a paper presentation by Alfons Weichenrieder (Goethe University, Department of Economics] that was organized pretty much on the fly, yet drew a strong audience response. ...

OK, onto the NYU Law School chauvinism. One point is simply that we had an event like this, and have many such in the course of a typical semester. But another point is that, despite a late start on our part in promoting the event (basically because everyone is every busy), we got more than 20 people to show up (and then engage in lively discussion), on short notice, on a Thursday night from 6 to 7 pm, with no food available (other than a Cadbury chocolate bar that Alfons whimsically brought), on a rather specialized topic, for an empirical paper by an economist who is not from the U.S. and thus is not known to most people here, and on a night when many or even most of the tax students who might have come were unavailable because they were going to Washington for a job fair. The audience included NYU students, NYU faculty, and tax people from outside the institution who are regularly participating members of our broader community.

I tend to doubt that all this could have happened at any other U.S. law school.  

NYU has been ranked #1 in tax every year by U.S. News & World Report.

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Oh my, where to begin. At least you appear to recognize that you are a NY chauvinist. But anyway, these events also could have and do happen at a fair-sized law school just a few blocks from a place called Capitol Hill. Assuming from your prose, as I must, that you are entirely ignorant of all locations, institutions, and events south or west of the Hudson River, I refer to Georgetown University.

Posted by: Publius Novus | Mar 7, 2014 1:43:20 PM

NYU is a great school, but its attachment to the NYC bar makes it difficult for it to form an independent viewpoint. Other than the author, who started at another law school, I don't think it has produced that much in terms of pathbreaking scholarship. That's not taking anything away from it, but critical work requires a certain independence of perspective, and I don't think any school that tied to a major practicing bar can develop it.

Posted by: michael livingston | Mar 8, 2014 3:32:42 AM