Paul L. Caron

Monday, November 9, 2020

Leandra Lederman: Spotter Of Silver Linings

Academic Spotlight: Leandra Lederman, Spotter of Silver Linings, 169 Tax Notes Fed. 1036 (Nov. 9, 2020):

Lederman (2020)Tax law professor Leandra Lederman — recently recognized as the seventh-most-cited tax professor in the country — didn’t let the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic thwart her aims to disseminate tax knowledge over the summer.

Lederman leads the Indiana University School of Law’s Tax Policy Colloquium during the spring semester, which she said was disrupted this year because of the pandemic.

When the 2020 colloquium shifted to online, Lederman saw an opportunity when she realized, “Oh, the geographic boundaries are gone." She told Tax Notes she opened up the colloquium and invited more people to the digital format.

Because of that, the 2020 colloquium had an increased attendance compared with previous years, and toward its end, Lederman asked around to see if there would be an interest in continuing with a brand-new online program over the summer.

That resulted in the Indiana/Leeds Summer Tax Workshop Series, co-hosted by Lederman and Leopoldo Parada of the University of Leeds School of Law in the United Kingdom.

Having publicized the workshop on Twitter and LinkedInLederman wrote on the Surly Subgroup tax blog that organizers would prioritize papers on tax topics of interest in multiple countries.

With speakers Zooming in from Boston Collegethe University of Oxford, and the University of Lisbon, among others, the workshop affirmed that with increased communication technology — applied because of the threat of COVID-19 — geographic boundaries are removed.

Lederman called the ability to include people from all over the world  a “silver lining” of the switch to an online format forced by the pandemic. ...

Lederman has enjoyed writing tax limericks since at least 2001. ... “I really like plays on words,” said Lederman, adding that because they condense information, limericks can be a useful study tool for tax law students. She noted that a colleague has used them on slides in class. Lederman also writes “tax valentines,” which are couplets. Here’s one from her Twitter account:

Roses are red
No need to feel blue
Valentines aren't income
Per Section 102.

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