Law and Economics
Economics 415-002 (#81175), meets Tuesdays and Thursdays 10:30-11:45am during Fall 2015, in <! a href="http://eagle.gmu.edu/map/fairfax.php?building=blue_ridge”>Art and Design Building, Room L008.
Fall 2015 GMU Syllabus
Instructor: Robin D. Hanson, Assoc. Professor, Economics
Office Hours: Officially Tuesdays 4-7p, but I'm usually in at Carow Hall 10B. Email or call ahead (703-993-2326) if you want to be sure I'll be in, or you want to meet somewhere besides my office.
Econ 415 Law and Economics (3:3:0). Prerequisite: ECON 306 or permission of instructor.
An economic analysis of the law. Topics include an introduction to legal
institutions and legal analysis; application of economic concepts to the law of
property, contracts and torts, criminal law, and constitutional law; the economic
efficiency of the common law; and a public choice perspective on the evolution of the law.
David D. Friedman, Law's Order: What Economics Has to Do with Law and Why It Matters, Princeton Univ. Press 2001, ISBN 9780691090092.
A. Mitchell Polinsky, Introduction To Law and Economics, 4th Edition Aspen Publishers, 2011, ISBN 9780735584488.
Robert Cooter and Thomas Ulen, Law and Economics, Sixth Edition, Addison Wesley 2013, ISBN 9780132540650
Goal of Class
Gain familiarity with basic facts and issues in the economics of law, and an ability to use basic economics to argue for particular legal outcomes.
Legal Opinion Topics
- Class Participation Please contribute to class discussions.
- Quizes Three in-class quizes will given. Each quiz will emphasize the lectures and text readings since the previous quiz. Quizes are open book, open notes.
- Defended Opinions Three times you will write a defense of your opinions on a legal topic. The assigned topics will be unusual, in order to encourage you to think them through yourself, rather than looking up what others have said. Limit your writing to two pages.
- Property: What rules for space property, including how things get owned, what exactly it is that is owned, and what happens after collisions. <! Who Gets What Asteriods and Sunlight? >
- Contract: What remedy or damages for kid from cuckoldry? <! What remedy or damages for cuckold? ! What remedy and damages for breaching job contract? Enforce Voluntary No-Fault Contract On Pedestrian-Car Accident? >
- Crime: Should private bounty hunters investigate and prosecute crime? <! A punishment plan for any punishment level What remedy and damages for cuckold? Limit to 2 pages. Tort: Negative Liability for Ratting on Cheating Spouses and Signficant Others Negative Liability for Introducing Couples When punish upload copies? sneeze? insult? Crime: Death for copyright violation, and huge bounties for catching? Choose punishment types under private law (e.g., fine, torture, prison, death, prison rape) gun control? >
Grade Weights: Class Participate 5%, 13% per Quiz and paper, 17% final.
- Quizes: 24Sept,22Oct,17Nov
- Defended Opinions: 22Oct,17Nov,10Dec
- Final: Dec 15, 10:30am-1:15pm.
|Week ||Text Chapters||Lecture Topics |
| 1, 3 Sept||F1-3, P1-2, C1-2 || Law Intro, Economics Review |
| 8,10 Sept|| C3|| Law and Legal Institutions |
|15,17 Sept||F4, C4|| Coasean Analysis |
<! quiz Thurs>
|22,24 Sept||F5,10, P4, C4|| Property |
|29 Sept, 1 Oct||F11, C5|| Property Continued|
| 6, 8 Oct ||F12, P5, C6|| Contract |
| 15 Oct || Contract Continued No Class Tuesday |
<! quiz paper Thurs>
|20,22 Oct || F13, P8, C7|| Contract Continued|
|27,29 Oct ||F14, P6, C8|| Tort |
| 3, 5 Nov || || Tort Continued No Class Tuesday |
|10,12 Nov ||F14, P7, C9|| Tort and Legal Process |
<! quiz paper Tues>
|17,19 Nov ||C10, P16|| Legal Process |
| 24 Nov ||F15, P10, C11|| No Class this week |
| 1, 3 Dec ||F18, P11, C12|| Crime
<! paper Thurs >
| 8,10 Dec ||F17 || Private Law No Class Tuesday|
|15 Dec || || Final Exam, 10:30am-1:15pm. |
If you are a student with a disability and you need academic accommodations, please see me and contact the Disability Resource Center (DRC) at 703.993.2474. All academic accommodations must be arranged through that office.