About Centre :
Every lawmaker is faced with two concerns: firstly, how a specific law might affect behavior and secondly, whether this law secures its intended social goals. There is a need to move from intuitive and subjective analysis to employing a scientific theory to predict these answers; this is what economics has to do with law.
The field Law and Economics or Economic Analysis of Law is concerned with this interface between the subjects of law and economics. It permits the greater use of economics to examine the law in addition to recognizing the importance of law to an analysis of the economy. Today, the field of Law and Economics has expanded into more areas such as property, contracts, torts, criminal law and procedure, constitutional law, administrative law, environmental law, family law, etc. The inherent advantage of this field is that its objective nature permits the legal system to function rationally and more efficiently. Besides, it provides a useful normative standard for evaluating law and policy. However, despite these significant advantages, Law and Economics has not gained much recognition in India, as compared to developed countries.
The objective of the GNLU Law and Economics Committee (GLEC) is to create awareness among the general public at large about this nascent field of study, which can play a crucial role in making the Indian Legal System more efficient.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
Apart from offering the subject as part of its regular curriculum wherein students are introduced to the analysis of Tort Law, Contract Law, Property Law, Intellectual Property Rights using tools of microeconomics, the Economics Department has successfully organized three Certificate Courses on the subject (two at the basic level and one advanced).
1.Basic Certificate Courses:
The First Certificate Course organized in February 2013 saw participation from 65 students. The second edition of the Certificate Course (September 2013) saw participation from 50 students. The Courses were conducted by academicians from across the country, including:
Mr. Sunil Bedekar, Advocate, Supreme Court, Director of LAWTOCON;
Mr. Nandan Nawn, Assistant Professor, School of Liberal Studies, Ambedkar University;
Dr. Ram Singh, Associate Professor, Department of Economics, Delhi University;
Dr. T.S. Somashekar, Director (Economics), Center for Competition and Regulation, National Law School of India University, Bangalore;
Dr. Santhakumar V., Azim Premji University, Bangalore;
Dr. P Murli Prasad, Associate Professor, IIT Kanpur;
Mr. Divya Tyagi, Assistant Professor of Law, GNLU, Gandhinagar;
Dr. Ranita Nagar, Associate Professor of Economcis, GNLU, Gandhinagar;
Mr. Rohan Lavkumar, New York University School of Law.
They gave larger insights in subjects ranging from Contract Law and Economics to Corporate Law, Competition Law, Intellectual Property Rights, Property Law, Law of Torts and Criminal Law with special reference to anti-rape law (in light of the recent Delhi gang rape incident) and its study with the help of precise economic parameters.
2. Advanced Certificate Course:
Apart from organizing these two Certificate Courses, GNLU has successfully organized an Advanced Course in Law and Economics in January 2014 with Dr. Ariel Porat as the key resource personnel. He is Alain Poher Professor of Law at Tel Aviv University and Fischel-Neil Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law at the University of Chicago. He has authored a number of papers and books in the field of Law and Economics, and is also the founder of the journal Theoretical Inquiries in Law. Dr. Ariel Porat delivered lectures on the Law of Torts and the Law of Contracts and provided an entirely new perspective to the participants.
Dr. Ariel Porat delivering lectures.
Dr. Ariel Porat delivering lectures.
Besides conducting Certificate Courses, the Department of Economics, GNLU has also published a book, "Economic Analysis of Law: An Indian Perspective", in association with LexisNexis India [ISBN: 9789351430278]. Under the able guidance of Dr. Bimal N. Patel, Director, GNLU, faculty members and students of the university took up this interdisciplinary research task in an attempt to foster greater research into economic analysis of laws in India and to create a separate body of knowledge ultimately aimed at achieving the highest degree of welfare in society. The book is divided into eight parts, each of which touches upon various facets of the law, ranging from an introduction of the basic models of economic analysis of law to the specialized arenas of the constitutional law, commercial laws, torts, personal laws, crime and environmental laws. The book makes an easy read for both students and academicians, and serves as a basic guide to laypersons.
4. Summer Institute at the University of Chicago:
Six students of Gujarat National Law University - Amudavalli Kannan (2011 Batch), Kaustubh Rastogi (2011 Batch), Kundhavi Suresh (2010 Batch), Rumani Sheth (2010 Batch), Shubhangi (2011 Batch) and Supratim Guha (2011 Batch) – had the delightful opportunity of attending the Summer Institute 2014, a two-week long course in Law and Economics offered by the University of Chicago, the birthplace of law and economics, to scholars and professionals. It is pertinent to note that they were the only undergraduate students taken in for this prestigious course. Besides, they were the only participants who were accepted from India; Indians were never a part of the course in the previous editions of the Summer Institute.
The Summer Institute 2014 covered the areas of Law & Property Markets, Law & Capital Markets, Economic Analysis of Intellectual Property, Economic Analysis of Consumer Contracts and Antitrust Law & Competitive Markets from July 7, 2014 to July 18, 2014. These subjects were discussed by some of the most prominent faculty in the Institute for Law & Economics, namely, Professor Lee Anne Fennell (Max Pam Professor of Law), Professor Douglas G. Baird (Harry A. Bigelow Distinguished Service Professor of Law), Professor Jonathan Masur (John P. Wilson Professor of Law and David and Celia Hilliard Research Scholar), Professor Omri Ben-Shahar (Leo and Eileen Herzel Professor of Law and Kearney Director of the Institute for Law & Economics), and Professor Randal C. Picker (James Parker Hall Distinguished Service Professor of Law). Aside from the regular lectures, the organisers of the course also arranged for special guest lectures by several distinguished and eminent personalities in the field including Professor Saul Levmore (William B. Graham Distinguished Service Professor of Law), Judge Richard A. Posner (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and Senior Lecturer in Law), Professor Eric Posner (Kirkland & Ellis Distinguished Service Professor of Law), Professor Tom Ginsburg (Leo Spitz Professor of International Law, Ludwig and Hilde Wolf Research Scholar and Professor of Political Science) and Martha Nussbaum (Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics). The course exposed the participants to yet unexplored dimensions on which economics traverses through the discipline of law. They had the opportunity to think out of the box, discover several different ways to tackle a problem and interact with co-participants and lecturers.
One of the central goals of the summer institute was to promote Law and Economics in the respective host countries of the participants and the University of Chicago intends to further support the advancement of the same. Further, many of the other participants were scholars and professors from across the globe and most have expressed a desire to visit GNLU for a conference or seminar discussing the myriad range of topics under the umbrella of Law and Economics.
The tireless efforts of the Economics Department of Gujarat National Law University made the above activities possible and inspired the formation of the GNLU Law and Economics Committee, to provide a better structure to the Department’s endeavours. The Committee believes that GNLU can spear-head an Asian Law and Economics Movement in collaboration with premier institutes within and outside India, and bring about a revolution in the Indian Legal System.
1. “Advanced Certificate Course on Economic Analysis of Constitutional Law”:
GNLU initiated the first of its kind in India Certificate Course on Economics of Constitutional Law under its flagship Centre of Law and Economics on 1st August, 2015. The Guest Faculty for the Course was Prof. Dr. Regis Lanneau. He is a respected French academician and Director of undergraduate program in Law and Economics as well as co-director of the Master’s Program in Economic Regulation at University Paris West Nanterre la Defense.
The duration of the Course was from 1st to 6th of August, 2015. With over 50 participants from various Universities, the course aimed at enabling students to critically analyze constitutional and public laws using economic tools. The course was spread over 16 hours and divided into 6 modules to provide students with working knowledge of the concept of Public Choice and culminated with the students writing a research paper applying the concepts to a contemporary Indian situation and a group discussion exercise.
Prof. Lanneau talked about the need for Impact assessment and evidence based policies. Impact Assessment is a technique to quantify and identify the public interest based on the best data available. He talked about an ideal mechanism to practice it which has various stages including the assessment of the need of the policy, various alternatives, quantifying such regulatory and non-regulatory alternatives and identifying risks and uncertainties which may arise. Such assessment techniques signal towards the need to pay attention to the functional efficacy of law. Furthermore, the put the burden of proof on those who seek new regulations and make data public which can always be used to assess implementation and improvements in a policy.
2. "Advanced Certificate Course on Principles of Law and Economics applied to Construction Contracts":
Lawyers are increasingly called upon to devise contracts and contract relationships that can enable the best possible cooperation between the parties. This requires an understanding of the economic role served by contract clauses. The course provides an introduction to the economic theory of contract and contract law, and illustrates the application of economic theory to remedies for breach of contract, change orders and conflict resolution schemes, and the allocation of risk of changed circumstances. A case study of the contract for the construction of a bridge between Denmark and Sweden illustrates how law and economics can inform contract drafting and contract management.
Keeping in mind the immense possibilities of integration of law and economics principles with construction contracts, CLE organized a week long course from January 11 to January 15, 2015 on Principles of Law and Economics which could be applied to Construction Contracts.
The course was designed to give the recipients both a holistic view of Law & Economics as a discipline and all the same provide opportunities to explore specific areas that are affected by its application. The resource person for the Course was Dr. Henrik Lando, Professor of Law and Economics, Copenhagen Business School in the Department of Law, CBS, Department of Private Law, University of Oslo. He has specialization in Law and Economics, tort and contract law, criminal law, theory of evidence, contract theory and organizational economics. Over 16 hours of intensive sessions, Prof. Lando introduced the participants to basic concepts of game theory and to basic concepts of contract theory, Basic Law and Economics of Contracts, Remedies for breach of contract, Change orders (Variations) and Risk allocation and changed circumstances.
6. 2nd International Conference on Law and Economics (To be organized at IIT-Kanpur on 3rd and 4th September, 2016):
The continuing challenges to society are of a techno-economic and management in nature. Hence, there is a need for formulating efficient policies with the consolidated inputs from technocrats, professionals and practitioners. The conference will emphasize not only the efficacy of prevailing legislation on individual behaviour, societal structure and trends; but also to formulation of workable least cost rules and regulations to promote societal welfare.
The consortium of IIT Kanpur, IIM Ahmadabad and Gujarat National Law University organizes the Second International Conference on Law and Economics to discuss procedural and substantive rules and regulations of market, non-market and network transactions.
The academic endeavour, by catering to proposals of improved and efficient tools and systems, will aid in mitigating the problems and enhancing well-being. The partnership brings under one roof brilliant minds and ideas for the support of three robust institutions, paving the way towards establishing long-term development and expertise in not just Law & Economics but all the fields, organisations and communities.
The Conference, which is to be held on the 3rd and 4th of September 2016 at IIT Kanpur, aims at:
- Establishing a platform to have an interaction with international and national law and economics intellectuals;
- Promotion of interdisciplinary comparative policy oriented academic activities by organizing interaction between scientists, professionals and policy makers which will enhance empirical research on law and economics;
- Publish the Proceedings of the Conference.
Themes of the Conference:
There is a need for efficient legal rules to change the behaviour of individuals of societies, and basic social structures and trends to achieve societal well-being. theoretical, methodogical, empirical, comparative, and substantial and procedural rules oriented law and economics. It also emphasizes on the institutional conditions that might promote efficient legal norms. The broad themes of this conference are:
- Law and Economics of Private and Public Laws: Law and Economics of Property law, Contract law, Tort law, Corporation law, Competition law, Labour Law, Administrative law with special emphasis on Developing Countries;
- Environmental Challenges: The Paris Agreement on Climate Change will initiate institutional climate change. It will also bring to the fore issues like land use policy, environmental regulation, trade and the environment, environmental refugees, and global governance;
- Consumer Contracts: J K Galbraith’s revised sequence prevails over goods and services. The standard form of contracts by the industrial empires forces consumers to take-it or leave-it in the sectors such as e-commerce, Housing, Insurance, Medical Services, and the Market for Human Organs;
- Crime against Women: Atrocities against women, gender discrimination at home or workplace or both;
- IPRs: Policy framework on Innovation and Invention, Patenting controversies in the Indian Pharmaceutical Industry, and Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights;
- Law and Finance: Financial reforms in India relating to issues such as Financial inclusion, the supremacy of the Reserve Bank of India regarding monetary policy, Cyber Crimes, Stock Regulating Exchanges and Trading thereon including High Frequency Trading, Sovereign Bankruptcy, Tax Evasion, Black Money, Basel and Financial Stability Board norms, WTO and the Financial Services;
- Constitutional functionaries and the Public Trust: The Constitutional issues such as Judicial Appointments, Judicial Overreach, Disqualification of Convicted Representatives, and Fixed Tenure for Bureaucrats.
The conference provides an opportunity to discuss interdisciplinary transformational research that will promote institutional scholarship on market, nonmarket and network transactions.
Website can be accessed at http://www.iitk.ac.in/ICLE2016/index.html
7. Coase's Army:
Under the aegis of the Student Research Development Council (SRDC), GNLU's Law & Economics Interest Group, Coase's Army, was established in March 2015. Coase's Army is a student research interest group that aims to raise awareness of and knowledge in Law & Economics as well as engage in research to create new insights into legal principles, especially in Indian law. It is named after Ronald Coase, who was an economist and professor at the University of Chicago Law School.
Coase's Army organizes activities like capacity building exercises, discussion forums and so on. The members of the groups are offered research opportunities for various events and projects. There is a world of activities that the group plans to engage in. From capacity-building and knowledge-sharing to project proposals and presentations, from lectures on introductory concepts to connecting within the groups with people who share interests, from policy papers for government departments to blog posts for laymen.
By guiding students through the basic tools and the unique concepts in the subject (including applications in property, tort, contract and criminal law), the group hopes to show how economic perspectives can provide astonishingly clear rationales for common legal rules and how there is much that can yet be done in the field.
8. Press Note Summer School Hamburg:
Three students of Gujarat National Law University – Shivansh Agarwal (2013 Batch), Tanvi Singh (2014 Batch) and Yamini Tyagi (2014 Batch) - had the opportunity of attending the Summer School in Law and Economics, at the University of Hamburg, Germany. It is a 6-week course that takes place in June-July each year. This summer school is a part of the curriculum of the well-established European Doctorate in Law and Economics (EDLE), which is partnered by University of Hamburg, Germany, University of Bologna, Italy and University of Rotterdam, The Netherlands; and also jointly organised by Graduate School ‘The Economics of the Internationalisation of the Law’.
GNLU students were the only under graduate pupils at the course, which mainly consisted of Doctorate students in Law and Economics from around the world, and those belonging to the EDLE program.
The EDLE is an Erasmus Mundus programme of excellence sponsored by the European Commission and by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (DAAD IPID line).
The Graduate School Programme ‘The Economics of the Internationalisation of the Law’ is an academic initiative that is sponsored by the German Science Foundation (DFG), led by the Institute of Law and Economics in Hamburg and chaired by Prof. Dr. Thomas Eger and Prof. Dr. Stefan Voigt.
Prof. Dr. Thomas Eger from Institute of Law and Economics, University of Hamburg who was a distinguished guest at the International Conference on Law and Economics held at GNLU in March 2015, provided this opportunity. It was a unique exposure for the students who got to interact with the faculty from around the world, and the doctorate students in the field of Law and Economics, many of whom have expressed interest to come to India and contribute to the development of Law and Economics here as resource persons.
The courses that were taught included Comparative Constitutional Law, Replication, Political Economy of International Law and Organizations, Robustness, Law of Social Choice and Introduction to German Law.
These courses were taken by some of the internationally well-known personalities in Law and Economics, including Prof. Mila Versteeg from University of Virginia, USA; Prof. Thomas Plümper from University of Essex, UK; Prof. Hannes Rösler, University of Siegen; Prof. Thomas Stratmann, George Mason University, USA; Prof. Peter Rosendorff, New York University, USA and Prof. Alan D. Miller from University of Haifa, Israel.
After the Summer School at University of Chicago in 2014, this is yet another example of the tireless efforts of the Centre for Law and Economics at GNLU. This is in line with the vision of the Centre that GNLU can spearhead an Asian Law and Economics Movement in collaboration with premier institutes within and outside India, and bring about a revolution in the Indian Legal System.
Last Updated : 07-10-2016