Paul L. Caron

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Harvard Law Review Inducts Most Diverse Class Of Editors In History

HarvardHarvard Crimson, Law Review Inducts Most Diverse Class of Editors in History:

For the first time in the publication’s nearly 130-year history, the Harvard Law Review inducted a group of editors this year whose demographics reflect those of their wider Law School class—including the highest-ever percentages of women and students of color.

The demographic composition of the new editors—who were selected over the summer—reflects the broader makeup of the Law School’s class of 2018, according to numbers provided by Harvard Law Review President Michael L. Zuckerman ’10. Forty-six percent of the incoming editors are women, an increase of about 10 percentage points from an average of the past three years. Forty-one percent are students of color, compared to the same three-year average of 28 percent on the Law Review. Both roughly reflect the corresponding breakdown of the wider Law School class.

The Law Review includes 46 editors from each second-year and third-year class, for a total of 92.

The Harvard Law Review—one of the preeminent student organizations at the school—has faced criticism in recent years for lacking representation of women and minorities on its editorial staff. A report released last spring by the Women’s Law Association’s Shatter the Ceiling Committee highlighted the gender gap in Law Review membership. That gender disparity has persisted even after the Law Review expanded an affirmative action policy to include gender in 2013, in its editor selection process.

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Wow Harvard did something! #don'tcare

Posted by: Douglas | Sep 8, 2016 6:29:49 AM

Can you kindly explain what happened in 2013 and why the traditional grades only selection criteria (changed in the 1970s) was not merit-based? Thanks in advance.

Posted by: Mike Petrik | Sep 8, 2016 5:51:18 AM

Intellectual diversity notwithstanding.

Posted by: CE | Sep 8, 2016 5:37:31 AM

I'm skeptical of this. These are superficial differences. Do they think differently, or is it only on the surface

Posted by: mike livingston | Sep 8, 2016 4:14:06 AM

May we assume, todd, that you made a similar post in each of the 125 or so years prior to 2013 when election to the Review was not truly merit-based?

Posted by: Thomas | Sep 7, 2016 9:24:59 PM

Gee, because simply picking those people with the best combination of grades and writing sample without any regard to their "identity" would be horribly unfair, right?

Why not simply have a lottery for the positions and do away with all pretenses of merit-based selection?

Posted by: todd | Sep 7, 2016 2:24:43 PM