ABOUT LSA

Prizes and Awards

Every year, the LSA recognizes great achievements in the field of Law and Society. Each award has a Prize Committee that reviews nominations and selects winners. An LSA membership is required to submit an awards nomination. Nominations for 2023 awards will open in December.

PRIZE

Harry J. Kalven, Jr. Prize

The Harry J. Kalven, Jr. Prize is awarded annually (biennially prior to 1999) for “empirical scholarship that has contributed most effectively to the advancement of research in law and society.” It is not a book prize, but is instead given in recognition of a body of scholarly work.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winners

Herbert M. Kritzer
University of Minnesota

Herbert (Bert) Kritzer has made extraordinary contributions to empirical sociolegal scholarship and the application of empirical knowledge to real-world legal problems. 

Trained as a political scientist, Professor Kritzer joined the University of Wisconsin faculty in 1977, spending three decades there, with affiliations in Political Science and the Law School, and with stints as director of the Legal Studies Program, director of the Data and Computation Center, and chair of the Department of Political Science. Following two years as Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Empirical Study of Legal Practice at the William Mitchell College of Law, Kritzer moved to the University of Minnesota where he was the Marvin J. Sonosky Professor of Law and Public Policy in the Law School and was an affiliated professor in Political Science. Kritzer is author, coauthor, or coeditor of 12 books and over 100 research articles. He also served as general editor of a remarkable resource for comparative and international study, the four-volume encyclopedia Legal Systems of the World, which includes detailed overviews of legal topics and summaries of the diverse legal systems of the world’s countries.  

Early in his professional life, Kritzer brought his empirical research strengths to issues that he has continued to examine throughout his career: civil litigation, the work of lawyers, judicial selection and the role of politics in law. His research often combines quantitative and qualitative methodologies, such as archival research, surveys, interviews, and observational studies.  

He was one of the contributors to the Civil Litigation Research Project (CLRP) at the University of Wisconsin that jump-started multi-methodological research in dispute resolution. CLRP examined how individuals reacted to and attempted to resolve their grievances, and analyzed the impact of lawyers and the courts on the resolution of disputes. Kritzer followed that influential work with additional fruitful collaborations comparing claiming and disputing processes in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.   

His award-winning scholarship on the work lives of lawyers has included Let’s Make a Deal: Negotiation and Settlement in Ordinary Litigation (co-winner of the 1993 C. Herman Pritchett Award for the best book on law and the courts, from the Law and Courts section, American Political Science Association) as well as empirical projects on legal advocacy, contingency fee legal practice and legal malpractice.  

His research and writing on judicial selection, including important studies of the elections of state supreme court justices and systematic analyses of other judicial selection approaches, have underscored the ubiquitous and powerful role of politics in determining who will decide legal disputes in the nation’s courts. 

Finally, Kritzer’s deployment of empirical methods in his own work, and his reflections on the benefits and limitations of empirical approaches to the study of law and legal processes, have guided so many other sociolegal scholars embarking on empirical study of law.  

He edited LSA’s flagship journal, the Law & Society Review, for four years (2004-2007). His stellar service as LSR editor and in other roles, along with his significant contributions to the development of the field of law and society, were acknowledged with a well-deserved Legacy Award in 2019. He was also LSA’s 2015 Ronald Pipkin Service Award winner.

Elizabeth Mertz
American Bar Foundation & University of Wisconsin

Empirical legal scholarship owes an enormous debt to Elizabeth Mertz, a groundbreaking anthropologist whose vast oeuvre makes a compelling case that the key to law is, above all, language. Her ethnographic research, including a landmark study of the first-year law school classroom, has modeled an invaluable approach to the social dynamics of legal pedagogy, bringing the texture of everyday speech to the complex and abstract process of learning to “think like a lawyer.” This study, The Language of Law School: Learning to “Think Like a Lawyer” (Oxford University Press, 2007) was co-winner of the Law & Society Association’s Herbert Jacob Book Prize and drew national attention to problems of privilege in legal pedagogy.

Across her articles and books, Mertz shows convincingly that qualitative research is an essential part of sociolegal scholarship. In her work, she shifts between the macro- and micro- to enhance our understanding of how practices of social discrimination not only affect legal actors but indeed shape them as such from the earliest stages of a legal education. Her research also examines the challenges that attend interdisciplinary translation, as well as the unique opportunities that lie in using social science to inform and improve legal processes. Again and again, Mertz has shown how fine-grained contextual analysis attuned to social context can inform the generalizations scholars can make in quantitative empirical work.

Beyond winning a broad readership for her innovative research, Mertz has created countless opportunities for sociolegal scholars through the establishment of a “New Legal Realism” movement and associated Collaborative Research Network. This initiative has generated edited volumes and symposia, and created a wonderful community for sociolegal scholars. With a view to the wider world, she also co-organized LSA’s International Research Collaborative on International Legal Education.

Mertz has been recognized for her mentorship of junior scholars. In 2015, she became the first professor from the University of Wisconsin Law School to receive the Doris Slesinger Award for Excellence in Mentoring. Mertz’s support of early career scholars has been a hallmark of her imprint on LSA, where she has held leadership positions at every level.

Her impact on law schools has been no less significant. Mertz has made important contributions to the debate over whether and how interdisciplinary sociolegal studies can be recognized in the metrics that affect law school rankings and in law school hiring and promotion. This effort, as well as her broader commitment to ethnographic legal research, has made her indispensable not only to LSA but also the American Association of Law Schools and Association for Political and Legal Anthropology within the American Anthropological Association. Here too she has offered guidance and support to a growing group of junior colleagues making incredible contributions to legal academia.

In recognition of Mertz’s work on law and language, she was elected a Fellow of the American Anthropological Association and selected as a Fellow of Princeton University’s Program in Law & Public Affairs. She has also served as Editor of Law & Social Inquiry and the Political and Legal Anthropology Review.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
2021
Joachim J. Savelsberg
University of Minnesota
2020
Terence C. Halliday
American Bar Foundation
Margaret Kwoka
University of Denver-Sturm College of Law
2019
Bryant Garth
University of California, Irvine, Law
2018
Lauren B. Edelman
University of California, Berkeley
2017
David Engel
SUNY, Buffalo
Neil Vidmar
Duke University
2016
Mariana Valverde
University of Toronto
2015
Malcolm Feeley
University of California, Berkeley
Kitty Calavita
University of California, Irvine
2014
Theodore Eisenberg
Cornell University
Kim Lane Scheppele
Princeton University
2013
Donald Black
University of Virginia
Franklin Zimring
University of California, Berkeley
2012
John Hagan
2011
Carol J. Greenhouse
Boaventura de Sousa Santos
2010
Shari Seidman Diamond
2009
Susan S. Silbey
2008
Jean Comaroff, John Comaroff
2007
Sally Engle Merry
2006
Robert A. Kagan
2005
Sally Falk Moore
2004
John Braithwaite
2003
Philip Selznick
2002
Jane Collier
David Trubek
2001
Stuart Scheingold
2000
E. Allan Lind, Tom R. Tyler
1999
Martha L. Fineman
Joel F. Handler
1997
Richard Lempert
Austin Sarat
1995
Stewart Macaulay, Laura Nader
1993
Marc Galanter
1992
Lawrence Friedman
1989
Richard Abel
1987
John Heinz and Edward Lauman
David Baldus, Charles Pulaski, George Woodworth
1983
Hans Ziesel

Nominations Require:

  • A letter of support from the nominator
  • The candidate’s curriculum vitae
  • 1 of 2 additional letters of support will be accepted, but are not required.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

Herbert Jacob Book Prize

The Herbert Jacob Book Prize annual competition is open to books from all fields of, and approaches to, law and society scholarship published in the previous year (excluding works of legal history, which are considered for the Hurst Prize).

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winner

Reuben Jonathan Miller
University of Chicago & the American Bar Foundation

Taking home the Herbert Jacob Book Prize for new, outstanding work in law and society scholarship was Reuben Jonathan Miller of the University of Chicago and the American Bar Foundation. His book, Halfway Home: Race, Punishment, and the Afterlife of Mass Incarceration (Little, Brown and Company, 2022) is a trenchant analysis of the long shadow of the criminal legal system in America. It provides an account of the afterlife of imprisonment. Miller draws on his experience as a volunteer chaplain at Chicago’s Cook county jail, as well as interviews and observations with incarcerated and formerly incarcerated people and their loved ones, and his personal family experience to paint a moving portrait of the enduring effects of incarceration, long after individuals are physically released from prison.

Honorable Mention

Poulami Roychowdhury – McGill University

Capable Women, Incapable States: Negotiating Violence and Rights in India (Oxford University Press, 2020)

Spencer Headworth – Purdue University

Policing Welfare: Punitive Adversarialism in Public Assistance (University of Chicago Press, 2021)

Swethaa S. Ballakrishnen – University of California, Irvine

Accidental Feminism: Gender Parity and Selective Mobility (Princeton University Press, 2021)

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
Book
2021
Arzoo Osanloo
University of Washington
Forgiveness Work: Mercy, Law, and Victims’ Rights in Iran Princeton University Press ; 2020
Honorable Mention
Sarah Brayne
University of Texas at Austin
Predict and Surveil: Data, Discretion, and the Future of Policing Oxford University Press; 2020
Honorable Mention
Sarah Esther Lageson
Rutgers University
Digital Punishment: Privacy, Stigma, and the Harms of Data-Driven Criminal Justice Oxford University Press; 2020
2020
Jeffrey S. Kahn
University of California-Davis
Islands of Sovereignty: Haitian Migration and the Borders of Empire (University of Chicago Press 2019)
2019
Issa Kohler-Hausmann
Yale Law School
Misdemeanorland: Criminal Courts and Social Control in an Age of Broken Windows Policing (Princeton University Press)
2018
Daphna Hacker
Cambridge, UK
Legalized Families in the Era of Bordered Globalization Cambridge University Press ; 2017
Alisha C. Holland
Cambridge, UK
Forbearance as Redistribution. The Politics of Informal Welfare in Latin America Cambridge University Press, 2017
Honorable Mention
Amada Armenta
University of Pennsylvania
Protect, Serve, and Deport: The Rise of Policing as Immigration Enforcement
Honorable Mention
Jeffrey R. Dudas
University of Connecticut
Raised Right: Fatherhood in Modern American Conservatism
2017
Roberto Gonzalez
Harvard University
Lives in Limbo: Undocumented and Coming of Age in America University of CA Press 2016
Tianna Paschel
University of California - Berkeley
Becoming Black Political Subjects: Movements and Ethno-Racial Rights in Colombia and Brazil Princeton University Press; 2016
2016
Ellen Berrey
University of Denver
The Enigma of Diversity: The Language of Race and the Limits of Racial Justice University of Chicago Press, 2015
Leila Kawar
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Contesting Immigration Policy in Court: Legal Activism and Its Radiating Effects in the United States and France Law and Society Series of Cambridge University Press in June 2015
2015
Osagie Obasogie
University of California, Hastings
Blinded by Sight: Seeing Race through the Eyes of the Blind Stanford University Press, 2014
2014
Mark Fathi Massoud
University of California, Santa Cruz
Law's Fragile State Colonial, Authoritarian, and Humanitarian Legacies in Sudan Cambridge University Press May 2013
2013
Mariana Valverde
University of Toronto
Everyday Law on the Streets: City Governance in an Age of Diversity University of Chicago Press (2012)
2012
Kaaryn S. Gustafson
Cheating Welfare: Public Assistance and the Criminalization of Poverty, New York University Press
Joshua Page
The Toughest Beat: Politics, Punishment, and the Prison Officers Union in California, Oxford University Press
2011
Yves Dezalay, Bryant Garth
Asian Legal Revivals: Lawyers in the Shadow of Empire, University of Chicago Press
2010
Jeannie Suk
At Home in the Law: How the Domestic Violence Revolution is Transforming Privacy, Yale University Press
2009
Steven M. Teles
The Rise of the Conservative Legal Movement, Princeton University Press
Richard A. Leo
Police Interrogation and American Justice, Harvard University Press
2008
Lisa Hilbink
Judges beyond Politics in Democracy and Dictatorship: Lessons from Chile, Cambridge University Press
Elizabeth Mertz
The Language of Law School: Learning to “Think Like a Lawyer”, Oxford University Press
2007
Susan F. Hirsch
In the Moment of Greatest Calamity: Terrorism, Grief,and a Victim's Quest for Justice, Princeton University Press
2006
Jon B. Gould
Speak No Evil: The Triumph of Hate Speech Regulation, University of Chicago
Craig Haney
Death by Design: Capital Punishment as a Social Psychological System, Oxford University Press
2005
William Haltom, Michael McCann
Distorting the Law: Politics, Media and the Litigation Crisis, University of Chicago Press
2004
John R. Bowen
Islam, Law, and Equality in Indonesia: An Anthropology of Public Reasoning, Cambridge University Press
2003
Keith Hawkins
Law as Last Resort: Prosecution Decision-Making in a Regulatory Agency, Oxford University Press
2002
Brian Tamanaha
A General Jurisprudence of Law and Society, Oxford University Press
2000
Eve Darian-Smith
Bridging Divides: The Channel Tunnel and English Legal Identity in the New Europe, University of California Press
Mariana Valverde
Diseases of the Will: Alcohol and the Dilemmas of Freedom, Cambridge University Press
1998
Bryant Garth, Yves Dezalay
Dealing in Virtue: International commercial Arbitration and the Construction of a Transnational Legal Order, University of Chicago Press
1996
Michael McCann
Rights at Work: Pay Equity Reform and the Politics of Legal Mobilization, University of Chicago Press
Carol J. Greenhouse, Barbara Yngvesson and David M. Engel
Law and Community in Three American Towns, Cornell University Press

Nominations Require:

  • Nominators must be current LSA members.
  • To stress the restriction stated above, books eligible for the Jacob Prize may be from any field of socio-legal scholarship except history; books with a significant historical focus should be submitted instead to the Association’s Hurst Prize. 
  • Only one single-authored work by the same author in a given year will be accepted. Two works by the same author will be accepted if one or both works are jointly authored.
  • Books must be published in English, or be English translations of original works. 
  • Books submitted must have a copyright date (regardless of actual publication dates) during the calendar year prior to the award ceremony.
  • Page proofs may be sent if the book will be published soon with the proper year’s date.
  • Self-nominations are accepted.
  • Copies of the book are required to be sent directly to the Herbert Jacob Book Prize Committee Members. We will reach out to the publishers of the nominated books and provide them with the addresses for the prize committees directly.
  • OPTIONAL – A letter of support from the nominator, including a synopsis of the book.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

James Willard Hurst Book Prize

The James Willard Hurst Prize is awarded annually (biennially prior to 2002) for the best work in sociolegal history (broadly defined) published in the previous year.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winner

Gregory Ablavsky
Stanford University

Gregory Ablavsky’s Federal Ground: Governing Property and Violence in the First U.S. Territories (Oxford University Press, 2021) is a substantial and consequential work of legal history. Its task is monumental: to explain the growth of federal authority in the first two U.S. federal territories, the Northwest and Southwest Territories. The book is ambitious: the geography it covers is massive; the source-base, which ranges from congressional debates and federal statutes to the paperwork of everyday governance such as deeds and surveys, is expansive. But it is its underlying questions that are most ambitious: what exactly is federal power, and who are its architects? His answer is surprising.

This is a story of practical governance; while the Washington administration, Congress, federal officials, land office administrators, and other federal bureaucrats sought to assert their vision of federal power over the West, the land they sought to govern and transform was far from empty. Those residents, including a wide range of Native peoples, French fur traders and villagers, and Anglo-American settlers and land speculators had conflicting views about how this vast land should be owned, organized, protected, and governed. And in their conflicts and negotiations with federal officials, each exploited federal power for their own gain and in the process influenced the shape governmental power would take. Governance, then, was not always predicable or straightforward, and federal authority was as much the product of the claims and actions of the diverse territorial inhabitants as it was the product of a well-laid out plan. Ablavsky, therefore, forces us to reconsider what we mean by “federal” and what we mean by “power.” The committee found the book particularly admirable for showing how the federal government can be studied, not as a monolith, but as the outcome of many different struggles playing out at grass-roots levels.  

Honorable Mention

Nada Moumtaz  – University of Toronto

God’s Property: Islam, Charity and the Modern State (University of California Press, 2021)

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
Book
2021
Samuel Fury Childs Daly
Duke University
A History of the Republic of Biafra: Law, Crime, and the Nigerian Civil War (Cambridge University Press, 2020)
Honorable Mention
Durba Mitra
Harvard University
Indian Sex Life: Sexuality and the Origins of Modern Social Thought (Princeton University Press, 2020))
2020
Leor Halevi
Vanderbilt University
Modern Things on Trial: Islam’s Global and Material Reformation in the Age of Rida 1865-1935 (Columbia University Press, 2019)
Honorable Mention
Sarah Seo
University of Iowa
Policing the Open Road (Harvard University Press, 2019)
2019
Rohit De
Yale University
A People’s Constitution: The Everyday Life of Law in the Indian Republic (Princeton University Press)
Kimberly M. Welch
Vanderbilt University
Black Litigants in Antebellum America (UNC Press)
2018
Fahad Ahmad Bishara
Cambridge University Press 2017
A Sea of Debt: Law and Economic Life in the Western Indian Ocean Cambridge A Sea of Debt: Law and Economic Life in the Western Indian Ocean Cambridge
2017
Heather Thompson
University of Michigan
Blood in the Water: The Attica Prison Uprising of 1971 and Its Legacy Pantheon Books, 2016
2016
Felice Batlan
Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago-Kent College of Law
Women and Justice for the Poor: A History of Legal Aid, 1863–1945 Cambridge University Press 2015
2015
Mitra Sharafi
University of Wisconsin
Law and Identity in Colonial South Asia: Parsi Legal Culture, 1772–1947 Cambridge University Press, 2014
2014
Nicholas Parrillo
Yale Law School
Against the Profit Motive: The Salary Revolution in American Government, 1780-1940 Yale University Press 2013
2013
John Witt
Yale University
Lincoln’s Code: The Laws of War in American History The Free Press
2012
Amy Chazkel
Laws of Chance: Brazil’s Clandestine Lottery and the Making of Urban Public Life, Duke University Press
Daniel J. Sharfstein
The Invisible Line: Three American Families and the Secret Journey From Black to White, Penguin Press
2011
Inga Markovits
Justice in Luritz: Experiencing Socialist Law in East Germany, Princeton University Press
Christopher Tomlins
Freedom Bound: Law, Labor, and Civic Identity in Colonizing English America, 1580-1865, Cambridge University Press
2010
Peggy Pascoe
What Comes Naturally: Miscegenation Law and the Making of Race in America, Oxford University Press
2009
James A. Brundage
The Medieval Origins of the Legal Profession: Canonists, Civilians, and Courts, University of Chicago Press
Ariela J. Gross
What Blood Won't Tell: A History of Race on Trial in America, Harvard University Press
2008
Risa L. Goluboff
The Lost Promise of Civil Rights, Harvard University Press
Mary Dewhurst Lewis
The Boundaries of the Republic: Migrant Rights and the Limits of Universalism in France, 1918 1940, Stanford University Press
2007
Nancy McLean
Freedom Is Not Enough, The Opening Up of the American Workplace, Harvard University Press
2006
Holly Brewer
By Birth or Consent: Children, Law, and the Anglo-American Revolution in Authority, Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia, by the University of North Carolina Press
2005
John Fabian Witt
The Accidental Republic: Crippled Workingmen, Destitute Widows, and the Remaking of American Law Harvard University Press, 2004
2004
Bruce H. Mann
Republic of Debtors: Bankruptcy in the Age of American Independence, Harvard University Press
Daniel Lord Smail
The Consumption of Justice: Emotions, Publicity, and Legal Culture in Marseille, 1264-1423, Cornell University Press
2003
Lauren Benton
Law and Colonial Cultures, Cambridge University Press
2002
Sally Engle Merry
Colonizing Hawai'i: The Cultural Power of Law, Princeton University Press
2000
Victoria Saker Woeste
The Farmer's Benevolent Trust: Law and Agricultural Cooperation in Industrial America, 1865-1945, University of North Carolina Press
1998
Leslie J. Reagan
When Abortion Was a Crime: Women, Medicine and Law in the United States, 1867-1973, University of California Press
1996
Marianne Constable
The Law of the Other: The Mixed Jury and the Changing Conceptions of Citizenship, Law and Knowledge, University of Chicago Press
1994
Christopher L. Tomlins
Law, Labor, and Ideology in the Early American Republic, Cambridge University Press
1992
Theodore L. Steinberg
Nature Incorporated: Industrialization and the Waters of New England, Cambridge University Press
Constance B. Backhouse
Petticoats and Prejudice: Woman and Law in Nineteenth Century Canada, Osgoode Society of Women's Press
1990
Martin J. Sklar
Corporate Reconstruction of American Capitalism, 1890-1916, Cambridge University Press
G. Edward White
The Marshall Court and Cultural Change, 1815-35, MacMillan Press
1988
David Langum
Law and Community on the Mexican-California Frontier, University of Oklahoma Press
Arthur McEvoy
The Fisherman's Problem, Cambridge University Press
1986
Edward Ayers
Vengeance and Justice, Oxford University Press
Richard Ferguson
Law and Letters in American Culture, Harvard University Press
1984
Peter H. Irons
New Deal Lawyers, Princeton University Press
1982
Lawrence Friedman and Robert Percival
The Roots of Justice : Crime and Punishment in Alameda County, California, 1870-1910. University of North Carolina Press
1980
Joseph H. Smith and Julius H. Goebel
The Law Practice of Alexander Hamilton: Documents and Commentary. Columbia University Press

Nominations Require:

  • Nominators must be current LSA members.
  • Books must be published in English, or be English translations of original works. 
  • Books submitted must have a copyright date (regardless of actual publication dates) during the calendar year prior to the award ceremony.
  • Only one single-authored work by the same author in a given year will be accepted. Two works by the same author will be accepted if one or both works are jointly authored.
  • Self-nominations are accepted.
  • Copies of the book are required to be sent directly to the J. Willard Hurst Book Prize Committee Members. We will reach out to the publishers of the nominated books and provide them with the addresses for the prize committees directly.
  • Page proofs may be sent if the book will be published soon with the proper year’s date.
  • OPTIONAL – A letter of support from the nominator, including a synopsis of the book.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

Article Prize

The Law and Society Association Article Prize recognizes exceptional scholarship in the field of sociolegal studies for an article published in English in the previous two years.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winners

Rachel E. López
Drexel University

Terrell Carter
Social Justice Activist

Kempis “Ghani” Songster
Healing Futures Restorative Justice Diversion Program

The LSA Article Prize was awarded to Terrell Carter, Rachel López & Kempis “Ghani” Songster for their article, “Redeeming Justice,” which appeared in the Northwestern University Law Review in 2021. The article explores life sentences without parole (LWOP) through the lens of a legal right to redemption, arguing that this right is embedded in the Eighth Amendment through the concept of human dignity. The article is a collaboration between human rights scholar Professor López and activists Carter, who is currently on his 29th year of a LWOP prison sentence and Songster, who was sentenced to LWOP as a juvenile and served 30 years in prison before being resentenced and released pursuant to the Supreme Court’s decision in Miller v. Alabama. “Redeeming Justice” analyzes both the legal contradictions and human toll of LWOP sentences and foregrounds voices that are frequently marginalized, not just in society, but in scholarship as well.

Honorable Mention

Ya-Wen Lei – Harvard University

Delivering Solidarity: Platform Architecture and Collective Contention in China’s Platform Economy” Ya-Wen Lei. American Sociological Review (2021)

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
Article
2021
Rachel E. Stern & Lawrence J. Liu
University of California-Berkeley & Yale Law School
“The Good Lawyer: State-Led Professional Socialization in Contemporary China,” (Law & Social Inquiry, 2020)
2020
Mitra Sharafi
University of Wisconsin
The Imperial Serologist and Punitive Self-Harm: Bloodstains and Legal Pluralism in British India, in Global Forensic Cultures: Making Fact and Justice in the Modern Era 60 (Ian Burney & Christopher Hamlin eds., 2019).
Honorable Mention
Niina Vuolajarvi
Rutgers University
“Governing in the Name of Caring—the Nordic Model of Prostitution and its Punitive Consequences for Migrants Who Sell Sex” Sexuality Research and Social Policy 16:151-165 (2019)
2019
Michael Yarbrough
John Jay College of Criminal Justice (CUNY)
Very Long Engagements: The Persistent Authority of Bridewealth in a Post‐Apartheid South African Community Law and Social Inquiry, 43(3): 647-677
2018
Sarah Brayne
University of Texas at Austin
Big Data Surveillance: The Case of Policing, American Sociological Review, 2017, Vol. 82(5) 977–1008
Honorable Mention
Hidetaka Hirota
City University of New York-City College
Exclusion on the Ground: Racism, Official Discretion, and the Quotidian Enforcement of General Immigration Law in the Pacific Northwest Borderland,” 2017, American Quarterly, Volume 69, Number 2, June 2017, pp. 347-370
2017
Forrest Stuart
University of Chicago
Becoming Copwise: Policing, Culture, and the Collateral Consequences of Street Level Criminalization, Law & Society Review 50(2) (2016): 279-313
2016
Ashley T. Rubin
University of Toronto
Law & Society Review 2015
2015
Kathryne Young
Stanford University
Everyone Knows the Game: Legal Consciousness in the Hawaiian Cockfight Law & Society Review, 2014
2014
Issa Kohler-Hausmann
New York University
Managerial Justice and Mass Misdemeanor published in the September 2013 volume of The American Journal of Sociology
2013
Alexandra Natapoff
Loyola Law School, Los Angeles
Misdemeanors, Southern California Law Review 85: 1313-1375
2012
Lauren B. Edelman, Linda H. Krieger, Scott R. Eliason, Catherine Albiston, and Virginia Mellema
“When Organizations Rule: Judicial Deference to Institutionalized Employment Structures” American Journal of Sociology 117: 888-954 (2011)
2011
Joseph A. Conti
“Learning to Dispute: Repeat Participation, Expertise, and Reputation at the World Trade Organization” Law & Social Inquiry 35:1, 625-62 (2010)
2010
Anders Walker
“The Violent Bear It Away: Emmett Till and the Modernization of Law Enforcement in Mississippi” 46 San Diego Law Review 459, 2009
2009
Terence C. Halliday and Bruce G. Carruthers
“The Recursivity of Law: Global Norm Making and National Lawmaking in the Globalization of Corporate Insolvency Regimes" American Journal of Sociology 112(January): 1135-1202 (2007)
John Hagan, Gabrielle Ferrales, and Guillermina Jasso
"How Law Rules: Torture, Terror, and the Normative Judgments of Iraqi Judges," Law & Society Review 42(3): 605-643 (2008)
2008
James J. Willis, Stephen D. Mastrofski, and David Weisburd
“Making Sense of COMPSTAT: A Theory‑Based Analysis of Organizational Change in Three Police Departments” Law and Society Review 41(1): 147‑188 (2007)
2007
Eric Feldman
“The Tuna Court: Law and Norms in the World’s Premier Fish Market” California Law Review 94: 313-69. (2007)
2006
Joachim J. Savelsberg and Ryan D. King
"Institutionalizing Collective Memories of Hate: Law and Law Enforcement in Germany and the United States" American Journal of Sociology, 111, 2 (2005) 579-616.
2005
Lucy E. Salyer
"Baptism by Fire: Race, Military Service, and U.S. Citizenship Policy, 1918B1935" The Journal of American History, Vol. 91, No. 3, December 2004: 847 876
2004
Paul Frymer
"Acting When Elected Officials Won't: Federal Courts and Civil Rights Enforcements in U.S. Labor Unions, 1935-95," 97(3) American Political Science Review, 1-17 (2003)
2003
Susan Bibler Coutin, Bill Maurer, and Barbara Yngvesson
"In the Mirror: The Legitimation Work of Globalization," 27 Law & Social Inquiry, 801 (2002)
2002
James Liebman
"The Overproduction of Death," Columbia Law Review 100 (2000) 2030-2156
Laura Beth Nielsen
"Situating Legal Consciousness: Experiences and Attitudes of Ordinary Citizens about Law and Street Harassment, Law & Society Review, (2000), 1055-1090
2001
Scott Phillips and Ryken Grattett
"Judicial Rhetoric: Meaning Making and the Institutionalization of Hate Crime Law," 34 Law & Society Review 567-606
2000
Mary Vogel, Bruce Western and Katherine Becket
"The Social Origins of Plea Bargaining: Conflict and the Law in the Process of State Formation, 1830-1860," 33 Law & Society Review 161-246"How Unregulated Is the U.S. Labor Market? The Penal System as a Labor Market Institution," 104 American Journal of Sociology, 1030-1060.
1999
Gregory C. Sisk, Michael Heise, and Andrew P. Morriss
"Charting the Influence of the Judicial Mind" New York University Law Review, 73(5):1377-1499
1998
David M. Engel and Frank W. Munger
"Rights, Remembrance, and the Reconciliation of Difference" Law & Society Review 30:1, pp 7-54

Nominations Require:

  • Nominators must be current LSA members.
  • Article copies submitted to the committee must be in English.
  • Only one single-authored work by the same author in a given year will be accepted. Two works by the same author will be accepted if one or both works are jointly authored.
  • The article must have a publication date within the two calendar years prior to the awards ceremony. Articles will only be considered once within the two-year period of eligibility.
  • The full article, including full bibliographic citation.
  • OPTIONAL – A letter of support from the nominator, including an abstract of the article.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

John Hope Franklin Prize

The John Hope Franklin Prize is awarded annually by the Law and Society Association to recognize exceptional scholarship in the field of Race, Racism and the Law.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winners

Frank Edwards
Rutgers University

Theresa Rocha Beardall
University of Washington

Theresa Rocha Beardall (University of Washington) and Frank R. Edwards (Rutgers University) are Assistant Professors of Sociology. Their paper, “Abolition, Settler Colonialism, and the Persistent Threat of Indian Child Welfare” is an empirical study of forced separation of Native children and the failed legacy of the landmark Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (ICWA). Drawing on theories of settler colonialism, the authors skillfully illuminate the legal separation of Native children as a perniciously ongoingracial project of a white supremacist settler-state. By empirically documenting ongoing dissolution of Native families and communities, Beardall and Edwards’ research presents a persuasive case for the abolition of the post-ICWA child welfare system. Such transformative action, the authors show, also requires the immediate redirection of financial resources to Native families and tribal nations. This article is a novel contribution to important sociolegal debates in race and law and demonstrates the importance of scholarship focused on an understudied group, the subordination of which has not always been considered through the lens of racialization.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
Publication
2021
Kara W. Swanson
Northeastern University
“Race and Selective Legal Memory: Reflections on Invention of a Slave”
Honorable Mention
I. India Thusi
Delaware Law School
“On Beauty and Policing,” 114 Northwestern University L.Rev. 1335 (2020)
Honorable Mention
Deborah N. Archer
NYU School of Law
“White Men’s Roads through Black Men’s Homes: Advancing Racial Equity through Highway Construction” 73 Vanderbilt L. Rev. 1259 (2020)
2020
Bernadette Atuahene
Chicago-Kent College of Law
Bernadette Atuahene. "Predatory Cities" California Law Review Vol. 108 Iss. 1 (2020) p. 107 - 182 ISSN: 0008-1221 Available at: http://works.bepress.com/bernadette_atuahene/52/
Honorable Mention
Michele Goodwin
University of California-Irvine
“The Thirteenth Amendment: Modern Slavery, Capitalism, and Mass Incarceration” 104 Cornell Law Review 899 (2019)
Honorable Mention
César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández
University of Denver Sturm
“Deconstructing Crimmigration” 52 UC Davis Law Review 197 (2018-2019)
2019
Kimani Paul-Emile
Fordham University School of Law
Blackness as Disability?
2018
Angela Onwuachi-Willig
University of California at Berkeley
Policing the Boundaries of Whiteness: The Tragedy of Being ‘Out of Place’ from Emmett Till to Trayvon Martin
2017
Matthew Clair and Alix S.Winter
Harvard University
How Judges Think About Racial Disparities: Situational Decision-Making in the Criminal Justice System Criminology 54 (2):332-359 Nominated by Lawrence D. Bobo, Harvard University
2016
Len Albright, Douglas S. Massey, Jacob S. Rugh
Northeastern University, Princeton University, Brigham Young University
Race, Space, and Cumulative Disadvantage: A Case Study of the Subprime Lending Collapse May 2015 issue of Social Problems (Volume 62, Issue 2, Pages 186-218)
2015
D. Wendy Greene
Samford University-Cumberland School of Law
Categorically Black, White, or Wrong: ‘Misperception Discrimination’ and the State of Title VII Protection, University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform, 2013
2014
Matthew Desmond
Sociology and Social Studies, Harvard University
Eviction and the Reproduction of Urban Poverty American Journal of Sociology 118 (2012): 88-133
2013
Ada Ferrer
New York University
Haiti, Free Soil, and Antislavery in the Revolutionary Atlantic 117 American Historical Review 40 (2012)
2012
Elise C. Boddie
"Racial Territoriality"” 58 U.C.L.A. L. Rev. 401 (2010)
2011
Osagie K. Obasogie
In “Do Blind People See Race? Social, Legal and Theoretical Considerations,” 44 L. & SOC. REV. 585 (2010)

Nominations Require:

  • Nominators must be current LSA members.
  • Article copies submitted to the committee must be in English.
  • The article must have a publication date within the two calendar years prior to the awards ceremony. Articles will be considered only once during the two-year period of eligibility.
  • Only one single-authored work by the same author in a given year will be accepted. Two works by the same author will be accepted if one or both works are jointly authored.
  • The full article, including full bibliographic citation.
  • OPTIONAL – A letter of support from the nominator, including an abstract of the article.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

Dissertation Prize

The LSA Dissertation Prize is awarded annually to a dissertation written within 12 months of the prize year that best represents outstanding law and society scholarship.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winner

Steven Schaaf
University of Mississippi

This year’s Dissertation Prize went to Steven Schaaf of University of Mississippi. His paper, “Litigating the Authoritarian State: Legal Mobilization and Judicial Politics in the Middle East,” uses a theory of “lawful resistance” to explain when, how, and to what effect citizens access legal institutions and seek to hold authoritarian states accountable to the rule of law. The dissertation offers an impressive mixed-methods study of lawful resistance that includes multiple, novel data sources, and it offers several theoretical contributions to the literature. It takes on an important, timely topic about why and how people mobilize the law to resist authoritarian states. It advances the argument with wide-ranging implications for studies of courts and judicial politics that go well-beyond the study and the discipline in which it is situated.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
Paper
2021
Tobias Smith
University of California-Berkeley
“The Contradictions of Chinese Capital Punishment”
Edward van Daalen
University of Genève
“Decolonizing the Global Child Labor Regime: The ILO, Trade Unions, and Organized Working Children”
2020
Emily Prifogle
University of Michigan
“Cows, Cars, and Criminals: The Legal Landscape of the Rural Midwest, 1920-1975”
Tommaso Pavone
PluriCourts Centre at the University of Oslo
“The Ghostwriters: Lawyers and the Politics behind the Judicial Construction of Europe”
Honorable Mention
Michael Gibson-Light
University of Denver
“The Prison as Market: How Penal Labor Systems Reproduce Inequality”
2019
Egor Lazarev
University of Toronto
Laws in Conflict: Legacies of War and Legal Pluralism in Chechnya Honorable Mention
Honorable Mention
Viviane Weitzner
McGill University
Raw Economy/Raw Law: Ancestral Peoples, Mining, Law and Violence in Colombia
2018
Amanda Hughett
Baldy Center for Law & Social Policy, SUNY-Buffalo
Silencing the Cell Block: The Making of Modern Prison Policy in North Carolina and the Nation
2017
Sarah Seo
Princeton University
The Fourth Amendment, Cars, and Freedom in Twentieth Century America
2016
Sandra Botero Cabrera
University of Notre Dame
Courts that Matter: Judges, Litigants and the Politics of Rights Enforcement in Latin America
2015
Gwendolyn Leachman
University of Wisconsin
Institutions and Dominance within Social Movements: How Legal Strategies Shape the Agendas of Movements for Social Change, Jurisprudence and Social Policy, University of California, Berkeley
2014
Hillary Berk
Jurisprudence and Social Policy, University of California, Berkeley
The Legalization of Emotion: Risk, Gender, and the Management of Feeling in Contracts for Surrogate Labor
Rohit De
Department of History, Princeton University
The Republic of Writs: Litigious Citizens, Constitutional Law, and Everyday Life in India (1947-1964)
2013
Benjamin Schonthal
Ruling Religion: Buddhism, Politics and Law in Contemporary Sri Lanka University of Chicago
2012
John W. Compton
A Moral Revolution: Evangelical Reform and the Transformation of American Constitutionalism, 1830‐1937, University of California at Los Angeles
2011
Chaitanya Lakkimsetti
Governing Sexualities: Globalization, Biopower, And Citizenship in Postcolonial India, University of Wisconsin, Madison
2010
Heather Schoenfeld
The Politics of Prison Growth: From Chain Gangs to Work Release Centers and Supermax Prisons, Florida, 1955-2000, Northwestern University
2009
Ceren Belge
Whose Law?: Clans, Honor Killings, and State-Minority Relations in Turkey and Israel, University of Washington Who Rules the Law?
Mark Fathi Massoud
How Government, Civil Society, and Aid Agencies Manipulate Law in Sudan, University of California, Berkeley
2008
Manuel A. Gómez
All in the Family: The Influence of Social Networks on Dispute Processing, Stanford University
2007
Sandra R. Levitsky
Private Dilemmas of Public Provision: The Formation of Political Demand for State Entitlements to Long-Term Care, University of Wisconsin
2006
Naomi Murakawa
Electing to Punish: Congress, Race, and the American Criminal Justice State, Yale University
2005
Margot Canaday
The Straight State: Sexuality and American Citizenship, 1900 1969, University of Minnesota
2004
Risa L. Goluboff
The Work of Civil Rights in the 1940s: The Department of Justice, the NAACP, and African American Agricultural Labor, Princeton University
2003
Katharina Heyer
Rights on the Road: Disability Politics in Japan and Germany, University of Hawaii
Barbara Oomen
Chiefs! Law, Power and Culture in Contemporary South Africa, University of Leiden
2002
Catherine Ruth Albiston
The Institutional Context of Civil Rights: Mobilizing the Family and Medical Leave Act in the Courts and in the Workplace, University of California, Berkeley
2001
Sara Manaugh
Without Reason: Drug War Politics in the United States, University of California, Berkeley
2000
Laura Beth Nielson
License to Harass: Offensive Speech, Legal Consciousness, and Hierarchies of Race, Gender, and Class, University of California, Berkeley
1999
Beth Kiyoko Jamieson
Toward a Feminist Theory of Liberty, Rutgers University

Nominations Require:

  • The dissertation must have been filed with the institution of higher education (U.S or non-U.S) during the calendar year prior to the award ceremony.
  • The full dissertation in English; translations from other languages into English are welcome.
  • An abstract of the dissertation, also in English.
  • OPTIONAL – One letter of nomination from a regular member of the Law and Society Association.
  • No self-nominations or student-member nominations are accepted.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

Graduate Student Paper Prize

The LSA Graduate Student Paper Prizes are awarded annually to a graduate student whose nominated papers, written within 18 months of the prize year, best represent outstanding law and society research.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winner (from 2021)

Nafay Choudhury
Harvard Law School & University of Cambridge

Nafay Choudhury’s paper “Order in the Bazaar: The Transformation of Nonstate Law in Afghanistan’s Premier Money Exchange Market” (written as a PhD student at King’s College London Dickson Poon School of Law) is based on his previous experience of living and teaching law in Afghanistan for five years. This paper demonstrates that even in Afghanistan under circumstances of immense uncertainty and insecurity, remarkable legal transformation can be found at the interface of state and nonstate legal systems. The study shows a unique situation where money exchangers have been able to maintain an independent nonstate legal system in their market by borrowing legal structures from the state and formalizing their affairs. The paper is conceptually refined, ethnographically informed and methodologically distinctive. Moreover, its findings are likely to add to a growing body of law and society research that seeks to understand how communities in different contexts are able to regulate their affairs with little reliance on the law.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
Paper
2021
Nafay Choudhury
Harvard Law School & University of Cambridge
“Order in the Bazaar: The Transformation of Nonstate Law in Afghanistan’s Premier Money Exchange Market”
2020
Tony Cheng
Yale University
“Social Media and Shaping the Social Memory of Police (Mis)Conduct"
2019
Stefan Vogler
University of California, Irvine
Constituting the ‘Sexually Violent Predator’: Law, Forensic Psychology, and the Adjudication of Risk
2018
Ayobami Laniyonu
UCLA
Coffee Shops and Street Stops: Policing Practices in Gentrifying Neighborhoods
2017
Erin Adam
University of Washington
Intersectional Coalitions: The Paradoxes of Rights-Based Movement Building in LGBTQ and Immigrant Communities
2016
Ayako Hirata
Kyoto University
Regulation In-Between: How Does Inter-Office Interaction Matter for Street-Level Regulatory Enforcement?
2015
Hassan El Menyawi
New York University
The Great Reversal
2014
Issa Kohler-Hausmann
New York University
Misdemeanor Justice: Control without Conviction
2013
Amy Myrick
Northwestern University
Facing Your Criminal Record: Expungement and the Collateral Problem of Wrongfully Represented Self
2012
Ben Grunwald
University of Pennsylvania
Questioning Blackmun's Thesis: Does Uniformity in Sentencing Entail Unfairness?
2011
Shauhin A. Talesh
University of California, Berkeley
How Organizations Shape the Meaning of Law: A Comparative Analysis of Dispute Resolution Structures and Consumer Lemon Laws
2010
Ashley T. Rubin
University of California, Berkeley
Race, Ethnicity, and Nativity at Eastern State Penitentiary: A Study of the Variation in Sentence Length, 1829-1871
2009
Gwendolyn Leachman
University of California, Berkeley
Who Frames the Message? Counter Movements and Public Perception of Social Movements' Legal Agendas
2008
Mark Fathi Massoud
University of California, Berkeley
Myth‑making and the Collision of Rights in Sudan
2007
Philip Goodman
University of California, Irvine
It's Just Black, White or Hispanic": An Ethno- graphic Examination of Racializing Moves in California's Segregated Prison Reception Centers
2006
Ariel Meyerstein
University of California, Berkeley
Between Law and Culture: Rwanda's Gacaca and Postcolonial Legality
Scott Leon
Washington Princeton University
The Killing Fields Revisited: Lynching and Anti- Miscegenation Legislation in the Jim Crow South, 1882-1930
2005
Daniel LaChance
University of Minnesota
Last Words, Last Meals, and Last Stands: The Illusion of Agency in the Modern Execution Process
2004
Bruce Michael Price
New York University
How Green Was My Valley? An Examination of Tournament Theory as a Governance Mechanism in Silicon Valley Law Firms
2003
Vanessa Barker
New York University
The Politics of Punishing: How the Routine Activities of Governance Impact Reliance on Confinement
2002
Aaron Kupchik
New York University
Making Some Noise: Degradation as Tension Reduction for the Criminal Court Prosecution of Adolescents
2001
Brian Glenn
University of Connecticut
The Shifting Rhetoric of Insurance Denial
2000
John Krinsky
Columbia University
Organizing Stories: Counter-hegemony, Legal Advocacy, and Anti-Workforce Activism in New York City
1999
Michele Landis
Northwestern University
Fate,Responsibility, and "Natural" Disaster Relief: Narrating the American Welfare State
1998
Liliana Suarez-Navaz
Stanford University
The Symbolic and Political Manufacturing of the Legitimation of Legality
Laura Beth Nielsen
University of California, Berkeley
Paying Workers or Paying Lawyers: Employee Termination Practices in the United States and Canada
1997
David T. Johnson
University of California, Berkeley
The Organization of Prosecution and the Possibility of Order
1996
Susan S. Gooding
University of Chicago
Race,Place and Names: Layered Identities in United States v. Oregon, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Plaintiff-Intervenor
1995
Cynthia R. Poe
University of Wisconsin
Those Wondrous Structures Found: The Antiquities Act of 1906 and Federal Indian Policy
1994
Paul J. Neiberg
University of California, Berkeley
Endangered Species Protection in the United States and Canada: A Comparison of Policy Styles
1993
Avi Tannenbaum
University of Maryland
Deadly Force: The Influence of a Supreme Court Decision on Police Behavior
1992
Michele DeMary
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
The New Federalism in Massachusetts
1991
John Gilliom
University of Washington
Rights and Discipline: competing Modes of Social Control in the Fight over Drug Testing
1990
Rebecca Eisner uth Zimmerman
University of Michigan
Individual Entitlement to the Financial Benefits of a Professional Degree
Tom Durkin
University of Chicago
The Meaning of Propensity to Sue Rates
1989
Kevin Delaney
SUNY Stony Brook
Power, Intercorporate Networks and ‘Strategic Bankruptcy’
Jennifer Jackman
Brandeis University
The Emergence and Subversion of Comparable Worth in the 1940's: A Study of the Massachusetts Equal Pay Act

Nominations Require:

  • Only non-student members of the Law and Society Association may make nominations for the Graduate Student Award. No self-nominations are accepted.
  • The paper must have been submitted within the two calendar years prior to the awards ceremony by a matriculated graduate or graduate professional student at any U.S. or non-U.S. institution of higher education. Papers originally written for coursework within this same time period and subsequently published are still eligible for nomination. Papers are only considered once within the two-year period of eligibility.
  • No instructor may nominate more than two student papers for the award.
  • Only one single-authored work by the same author in a given year will be accepted. Two works by the same author will be accepted if one or both works are jointly authored.
  • In submitting the paper for award consideration, the nominator must include the date and title of the course for which the paper was written.
  • Submissions must be in English; translations from other languages into English are welcome.
  • The paper must be double-spaced; may not exceed 18,000 words in length, including notes and references; and must be in a minimum of 12 point font.
  • OPTIONAL – Nominators can include a letter of support describing the merits of the student paper they are submitting.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

Undergraduate Student Paper Prize

The LSA Undergraduate Student Paper Prizes are awarded annually to an undergraduate student whose nominated papers, written within 18 months of the prize year, best represent outstanding law and society research.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winner

Abbey Hackleman
Purdue University

Abbey Hackleman’s paper, “Functional Confinement,” takes the reader through a sociolegal analysis of two major transitions in mental health policy in the United States. First, Hacklman summarizes the transition from the neglect of those with mental illness in prisons and almshouses at the turn of the 19th century to open psychiatric hospitals. Detailing the mistreatment in these hospitals and the profound restrictions on civil liberties, the author goes on to analyze the closing of these institutions in conjunction with President Johnson’s “war on crime” starting in 1963. Hackelman’s paper is a careful analysis of federal policy makers between the 1960s and 1980s demonstrating how public demand and fiscal austerity worked to confine the mentally ill to prisons. Using both primary and secondary historical sources of the time period, the paper shows that deinstitutionalization and mass incarceration are co-constituted. The author concludes with a convincing argument that failure to apply a sociolegal historical analysis to these problems will lead to continued failure to address the problems of mental illness in the United States.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
Paper
2021
Raika Kim
University of California-Berkeley
“The Ability to Work: Perspectives of Workers with Disabilities”
2020
Anthony Carrasco
University of California-Berkeley
“Unconscionability, Vulnerability, and Other Sociopolitical Constructions of the Judicial Imagination”
2019
Catherine Mansur
Northwestern University
All Bets Are off in the Climate Casino: Federalism and U.S. Power Sector Greenhouse Gas Regulation
Honorable Mention
Haley Glazer
Northwestern University
Demographic and Case-Related Factors Affecting Quantity of News Media Coverage in Texas Death Penalty Cases: An Exploration
2018
J. Y. Chua
Yale College
The Strange Career of Gross Indecency: Racial Anxiety and Sexual Politics in Pre-World War II Singapore
Honorable Mention
Melissa Barragan
University of California, Irvine
Guns and Injustice: Examining Gun Offender Perceptions of Gun Law and Gun Policing in Los Angeles
2017
Mitchell Santos Toledo
University of California, Berkeley
Liminal Legality and Legal Consciousness: Undocumented Student Responses to DACA
2016
Allison Cano
Simon Fraser University
A Matter of Personal Status: Women’s Legal Rights and the Making of Family Law in Post-2003 Iraq
2015
Matthew Mitchell
University of Melbourne
Producing Black Collar Crime Through Discourse: The Changing Relationship Between State Law and the Catholic Church
2014
Alison Gocke
Princeton University
Visions of the Land: Cartography and Environmental Philosophy in the Old Northwest
2013
Carter Greenbaum
Princeton University
Stories to Monies: Sociological Perspectives on the Meaning of Money In International Commercial Mediation
2012
Chase S. Burton
University of California, Berkeley
Spare the Cell, Spoil the Child: Early History and Philosophy of American Juvenile Justice
2011
Kory Redding
University of North Texas
When the Chief Dissents: Examining the Institutional Consequences of Administrative Responsibilities, 1946-2008
2010
Erin Mitchell
Drake University
Dangerous, Dirty and Disgusting: An Exploration of the American Narrative of Birth
2009
Clare F. Ryan
Macalester College
Confronting Childhood: Courts and the Contradictions of Juvenile Justice
2008
Patricia Bass
Macalester College
Regulating the ‘Social Mix:’ How and Why Do France and the U.S. Desegregate Housing
2007
Rebecca Sheff
Macalester College
Strategic Choices in Diverse Contexts: The Maasai Indigenous Rights Movement
2006
Ian Richardson
University of California, Berkeley
From Institutional Change to Customer Service: The Development of the Practical Meaning of Title VI
2005
Rachel Lynn, Ballard McCracken
Amherst College
Inside Out and Upside Down in Indian Country: Law's Colonization of the Native Nations
2004
John Graham Kimble
Princeton University
Insuring Inequality: The Role of the Federal Housing Administration in the Urban Ghettoization of African-Americans
2003
Yen P. Nguyen
University of California, Santa Barbara
Creating Computer Crimes Unites to Take a Byte Out of Computer Crime
2002
Matthew Cannon
University of Michigan
Kulturkampf and the Courts: The Relationship between Judicial Pronouncements on and Cultural Impressions of Gay Rights in America, From Bowers to Baker
2001
Rachael Burson
Amherst College
A Tale of Voice, Justice, and Power: Reading the Representation of Legal Storytelling in "The Accused"
2000
Shushanie Isaacson
University of Minnesota
Diffusion of Sex Offender Registration Laws and Public Access Provisions Therein Across Fifty American States
1999
Emily Samantha Glasgow
Amherst College
Taking Children Seriously: Reconceiving Childhood, Imagining Rights, and Respecting the Voice of Youth
1998
Vicki J. Running
Wellesley College
Political Rights and Goals: Ananlying the Consituttional Challenges and Policy Considerations Facing Megan’s Law, the Community Notification Provision Regarding Released Sex Offenders
1997
Clifford J. Rosky
Amherst College
A View to a Kill: Democracy, Television, and Capital Punishment
1996
Alexa Klimas
Princeton University
Why Did We Believe the Children?: A Closer Look at Allegations of Sexual Abuse in Day Care Centers in the 1980's
1995
Clare Melissa Gilbert
Vassar College
Pornography v. the First Amendment
1994
Elizabeth A. Myrick
Bates College
What’s Rights Got to Do With It?: Intimate Violence and the Potential of Postmodern Rights Theory
1992
Marilyn Brown
Wellesley College
The Meanings of Intoxication: Alcohol, Power and Colonialism in Nineteenth-Century Hawaii
1991
John White
Santa Clara University
Styles of Mediation and Society: An Analysis of a ‘Hybrid’ Approach to Mediation
1989
Timothy Pohl
Amherst College
The Right to Health Care: Moral Arguments and Legal Recognition
Sagariki Molly Chaudhuri
Yale University
The Efficacy of the Temporary Restraining Order from the Victim’s Perspective

Nominations Require:

  • Only regular LSA members and graduate student LSA members who have received the nominated papers while working as lecturers or teaching assistants may nominate papers for the Undergraduate Student Award. No self-nominations are accepted.
  • No instructor may nominate more than two student papers for the award.
  • Only one single-authored work by the same author in a given year will be accepted. Two works by the same author will be accepted if one or both works are jointly authored.
  • The paper must have been submitted within the two calendar years prior to the awards ceremony by a matriculated undergraduate student at any U.S. or non-U.S. institution of higher education including two-year community colleges. Papers originally written for a class within this same time period and subsequently published are still eligible. Papers are only considered once within the two-year period of eligibility.
  • In submitting the paper for award consideration, the nominator must include the date and title of the course for which the paper was written.
  • Submissions must be in English; translations from other languages into English are welcome.
  • The paper must be double-spaced; may not exceed 18,000 words in length, including notes and references; and must be in a minimum of 12 point font.
  • OPTIONAL – Nominators can include a letter of support describing the merits of the student paper they are submitting.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

PRIZE

International Prize

The Law and Society Association International Prize is awarded annually to a scholar, normally resident outside the United States, in recognition of scholarship that has contributed significantly to the advancement of knowledge in the field of law and society. It is not a book prize, but is instead given in recognition of a body of scholarly work.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winner

Nicola Lacey
London School of Economics

This year’s International Prize was awarded to Nicola Lacey of the London School of Economics. Professor Lacey transformed the fields of critical criminology and penology and opened up new areas of inquiry and advocacy for reforming criminal justice systems around the globe. Her work advanced sociolegal scholarship in these key areas. Professor Lacey has also made significant contributions to feminist legal-thought and has written/co-edited 11 books.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
2021
Rachel Sieder
Centre for Research and Advanced Study in Social Anthropology
2020
Ulrike Schultz
Fernuniversität in Hagen
Honorable Mention
Stefan Machura
Bangor University
2019
Kelly Hannah-Moffat
University of Toronto
2018
Fiona Haines
University of Melbourne
2017
John Braithwaite
Australian National University
Nachman Ben-Yehuda
Hebrew University
2016
Susanne Karstedt
Griffith University
2015
Ronen Shamir
Tel Aviv University
2014
Setsuo Miyazawa
Aoyama Gakuin University Law School
2013
David Nelken
University of Macerata and University of Wales, Cardiff
2012
Upendra Baxi
2009
Yves Dezelay
2007
Xingliang Chen
Dario Melossi
2005
Hazel Genn
2003
Masaji Chiba
2001
Neelan Tiruchelvam (posthumously)

Nominations Require:

  • Nominators must be current LSA members
  • Normally offered to a scholar in residence outside the United States
  • A letter of support from the nominator
  • The candidate’s curriculum vitae
  • 1 or 2 additional letters of support will be accepted, but are not required.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

AWARD

Stan Wheeler Mentorship

The Stan Wheeler Mentorship is given each year to a member of the Law and Society community who is regarded by their peers and students as an outstanding mentor for graduate, professional, or undergraduate students working on issues of law and society.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winners

Calvin Morrill
University of California, Berkeley

Calvin Morrill is Stefan A. Riesenfeld Professor of Law and Sociology in Jurisprudence and Social Policy at UC Berkeley, following positions in Sociology departments at University of the Arizona and University of California, Irvine. Professor Morrill has served as Associate Dean and Chair of JSP and Legal Studies since 2013, which means that he has long been an institutional leader in graduate sociolegal studies. He teaches research methods along with other courses on legal sociology, for which he has won numerous teaching awards. He was a collaborative leader in making the West Coast Law and Society Retreat a forum for sociolegal graduate students for a number of years. Dr. Morrill has served on an astounding 44 Ph.D. supervisory committees and chaired over half (24) of them–many of these also entailed MA level supervision. Many of the PhDs he has supervised have co-authored publications with him, and many have gone on to become leading researchers, teachers, and public intellectuals affiliated with the Law and Society Association.

Students and colleagues of Dr. Morrill have been effusive in their praise of his commitments to and achievements in mentoring. Many features of these letters deserve attention for how they capture the outstanding involvement of him as a mentor. For one thing, former students extol Cal’s “uncanny ability to push each of us beyond our current thinking and help us find the hidden capacity we each have within.” He is known for his advice in helping students to overcome the familiar “imposter’s syndrome” and to gain confidence to move forward. Testimonies on this point include many examples of him assisting students in times of crisis.

Elizabeth Mertz
American Bar Foundation & University of Wisconsin

Elizabeth Mertz is very well known among sociolegal scholars for her commitment to legal education. She is a Senior Research Faculty member at the American Bar Foundation and Professor of Law Emerita at the University of Wisconsin. Even though she has not worked for most of her career in a PhD generating institution, she has distinguished herself by mentoring a long line of students working on Ph.D., SJD, LLM, and senior honors theses at multiple universities along with a host of post-doctoral fellows and visiting scholars at the ABF. Notably, she has championed the contributions of women, Black, Indigenous and scholars of color while maintaining a vigorous agenda of her own award-winning scholarship. Her distinctive research addresses a variety of issues in law school education, with a focus on law, language, and qualitative social science.

Professor Mertz is a leader of the innovative New Legal Realism project, which has profoundly reshaped interdisciplinary sociolegal research and influenced increasing numbers of scholars at all levels, including graduate and junior as well as senior scholars. She also has generated a number of large grants aiming to fund research and support creative law school education. All these efforts won her the Association for Women Lawyers Mentoring Award in 2016 as well as the Doris Slesinger Award for Excellence in Mentoring at the University of Wisconsin. Her students describe her as an “inspiring” and “proactive” mentor who encourages innovative sociolegal research, assists her mentees at every level of research development and publication, and employs her extensive professional networks to amplify the impact of their scholarship. Many letters note that Mertz is a long-term mentor who continues to provide support for many years during the professional lives of once-students.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
2021
Setsuo Miyazawa
UC Hastings Law
2020
Dee Smythe and Kelley Moult
University of Cape Town
2019
Renée Ann Cramer
Drake University
2018
Robert Gordon
Stanford University
Laura Beth Nielsen
American Bar Foundation/Northwestern U
2017
Lauren Edelman
University of California, Berkeley
Michael McCann
University of Washington
2016
Mona Lynch
University of California, Irvine
2015
Susan Silbey
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2014
Jacques Commaille
Ecole Normale Superieure de Cachan
2013
Lawrence M. Friedman
Stanford University
2012
Valerie Hans
2011
Kiyoshi Ikeda
2010
Howard S. Erlanger
2009
Robert A. Kagan, Austin Sarat

Nominations Require:

  • Nominators must be current LSA members
  • A letter of support from the nominator, describing the nominee’s mentoring skills and his/her record as a “member of the Law and Society community”.
  • The candidate’s curriculum vitae.
  • 2 – 4 additional letters of support from former students, colleagues, collaborators, or others who have experienced the nominee’s skills as a mentor.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

AWARD

Ronald Pipkin Service Award

The Ronald Pipkin Service Award is awarded to the Law and Society Association member who has demonstrated sustained and extraordinary service to the Association. Forms of service that will be awarded should be independent of elected office and appointed roles, although those roles can be considered as part of a larger record.

The award carries a cash prize of $500.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winners

Annie Bunting
York University

Annie Bunting is Professor of Law & Society at York University in Toronto, Canada, researching and teaching in the areas of social justice and human rights. Her service to LSA over many years has been nothing less than extraordinary. Professor Bunting was elected to the Board of Trustees in 2013-2016. In addition to helping steer LSA through difficult times of administrative transition, she has served tirelessly on many committees championing the leadership and participation of women and minority scholars in the Association. She served as Chair of the Local Arrangements Committee for the 2018 joint meeting of LSA and the Canadian Law and Society Association. Other committee service includes the Program Committee (2002, 2008, 2012), 50th Anniversary Committee, International Scholarship Prize Committee, Stan Wheeler Prize Committee, Co-Chair of the Governance Committee, and most recently she served on the International Activities Committee.

Javier A. Couso
Universidad Diego Portales & Utrecht University

Javier A. Couso is Professor of Public Law at Universidad Diego Portales (Chile) and Professor of Law at Utrecht University (The Netherlands), with research and teaching expertise in constitutional law. In his service for LSA, he has been a leading member working for many years to promote international scholars and the global field of sociolegal scholarship more generally. He has served on numerous committees, including the International Activities Committee (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006), the Graduate Student Workshop Committee, Nominating Committee, CRN Committee, and Co-chair or member of the Program Committee (2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2018, 2020). In all these efforts Professor Couso has served with gracious generosity and been attentive to scholars and their intellectual contributions from beyond the Euro-American academy.

Past Winners

Year
Individual(s)
Affiliation
2021
Nancy Reichman
University of Denver
2020
Kim Lane Scheppele
Princeton University
Howard Erlanger
University of Wisconsin
2019
David Trubek
University of Wisconsin Madison
2018
Susan M. Olson
University of Utah
2017
Doris Marie Provine
Arizona State University
2016
Shari Diamond
Northwestern University and American Bar Foundation
2015
Bert Kritzer
University of Minnesota
2014
Austin Sarat
Amherst College
Samuel Krislov
University of Minnesota
2013
Richard D. “Red” Schwartz
Yale University and Syracuse University
2012
Lissa Ganter

Nominations Require:

  • Nominees must be current members of the Law and Society Association, however, nominators are not required to be members.
  • A letter of support describing the nominee’s demonstrated, sustained and extraordinary service to the Association.
  • 1 or 2 additional letters of support will be accepted, but are not required.

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

AWARD

Legacy Award

The LSA Legacy Award honors people whose contributions significantly helped to develop the Association through sustained commitment to the Association’s mission and legacy, extensive service, or scholarly publications that made a lasting contribution to the Association.

Current membership in the Association is not necessary.
Nominations for 2023 Awards will Open in December!

Click Here to Read the 2022 Awards Release!

Current Winners (from 2021)

Rosann Greenspan
University of California-Berkeley

Rosann Greenspan is the former executive director of Berkeley’s Center for the Study of Law and Society, with which she was affiliated for 20 years until her retirement in 2019. She has also held positions as research officer at the Law Reform Commission of Canada, postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University, US Supreme Court fellow, research director at the Police Foundation in Washington, DC, and lecturer in Legal Studies at U.C. Berkeley, inter alia. Her most recent publication is the edited volume, The Legal Process and the Promise of Justice: Studies Inspired by the Work of Malcolm Feeley, edited by Rosann Greenspan, Hadar Aviram and Jonathan Simon (Cambridge University Press, 2019).

Born and raised in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Dr. Greenspan graduated with her B.A. magna cum laude in Yale University’s first class of undergraduate women. She earned an M.A. from the Centre for Criminology at the University of Toronto, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in the interdisciplinary Jurisprudence & Social Policy Program in U.C. Berkeley School of Law. Besides Ontario, where she returns regularly, she has also lived in Quebec and British Columbia, and briefly in the Yukon.

Mari Matsuda
University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

From her earliest academic publications, Professor Matsuda has spoken from the perspective and increasingly used the method that has come to be known as critical race theory. She is not only one of its most powerful practitioners, but is among a handful of legal scholars credited with its origin. Her first article, “Liberal Jurisprudence and Abstracted Visions of Human Nature,” published in 1986, boldly—albeit respectfully—took on liberal legal philosopher John Rawls’ theory of justice and in doing so announced her own philosophical orientation. Matsuda concludes her piece with an idea that informs much of her work in subsequent years: “There is, as Rawls suggests, a place called Justice, and it will take many voices to get there.” The voices she has in mind are the voices that have been left out, “outsider” voices speaking as individuals and as members of their communities of origin, voices of subordinate peoples. Voices from the bottom, Matsuda believes—and critical race theory posits—have the power to open up new legal concepts of even constitutional dimension. Paradoxically, bringing in the voices of outsiders has helped to make Matsuda’s work central to the legal canon. A Yale Law School librarian ranked three of her publications as among the “top 10 most cited law review articles” for their year of publication. Judges and scholars regularly quote her work.

Louise Trubek
University of Wisconsin Law School

Louise G. Trubek is an Emerita Professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin and the Yale Law School, Louise is an active scholar in the fields of public interest law around the world, social justice advocacy, clinical legal education and the legal profession. Her scholarship and teaching also includes studies of regulation and governance in the European Union and the United States. Louise’s current research includes co-editing with Scott Cummings and Fabio Sa e Silva a book on the pro-bono movement worldwide: Global Pro Bono: Causes, Consequences and Contestation (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2020). She also co-authored with Prof. Luz Herrera “The Emerging Legal Architecture for Social Justice” published in 44 NYU Rev. L & Soc. Change 355 (2020). Other publications in the field include “Social Justice Advocacy and Innovation: The Wisconsin Center for Public Representation 1974-Present” and “Transformations in Health Law Practice: The Intersection of Changes in Healthcare and Legal Workplaces” (with Barbara Zabawa and Paula Galowitz).

Charles Lawrence 
University of Hawai’i at Mānoa

Professor Lawrence joined the William S. Richardson School of Law in 2008 from Georgetown. He began his teaching career at the University of San Francisco in 1974, was a tenured professor at Stanford and Georgetown, and has visited several other schools, including Harvard, Berkeley, UCLA, and the University of Southern California. Professor Lawrence is best known for his prolific work in antidiscrimination law, equal protection, and critical race theory. His most recent book, We Won’t Go Back: Making the Case for Affirmative Action (Houghton Mifflin, 1997), was co-authored by Professor Mari Matsuda. Professor Lawrence received the University of San Francisco School of Law’s Most Distinguished Professor Award; the John Bingham Hurlburt Award for Excellence in Teaching, presented by the 1990 graduating class of Stanford Law School; and the Society of American Law Teachers national teaching award. He has been awarded honorary doctorates by Haverford College, Georgetown University, most recently, In December of 2019, he also received an honorary Doctorate from Nelson Mandela University in South Africa. He served as a member of the District of Columbia Board of Education and on many other public interest boards.

Setsuo Miyazawa
UC Hastings Law

Setsuo Miyazawa is a legal sociologist who received LL.B., LL.M., and S.J.D. from Hokkaido University and M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in sociology from Yale. Professor Miyazawa has a wide range of research interests, including police and criminal justice, legal ethics and public interest lawyering, legal education, and corporate legal practice; he received his doctoral degree in Japan with a study on police, while receiving his American doctoral degree with a study on corporate legal departments. He has published or edited more than a dozen books in Japanese and English. His first English book, Policing in Japan (SUNY Press, 1992), received the 1993 Distinguished Book Award of the Division of International Criminology of the American Society of Criminology. He has also been active in the Law and Society Association (LSA) in the US, twice serving on its Board of Trustees. He co-founded the Collaborative Research Network 33 in East Asian Law and Society in the LSA in 2008 and received the International Scholarship Prize from the LSA in 2014. He co-founded the Section on East Asian Law and Society in the AALS in 2015 and the Asian Law and Society Association (ALSA) in 2016. He was the founding President of the ALSA in 2016 and 2017.

Past Winners

YEAR
INDIVIDUAL(S)

2020

Carroll Seron

Keith Hawkins

Malcolm M. Feeley

Bryant Garth

David B. Wilkins

Neil Vidmar

2019

Richard L. Abel

Kitty Calavita

David Engel

William Felstiner

Lawrence Friedman

Marc Galanter

Joel Handler

Robert A. Kagan

Samuel Krislov

Herbert Kritzer

Jack Ladinsky

Richard Lempert

Felice Levine

Laura Nader

Stewart Macaulay

Lynn Mather

Frank Munger

Doris Marie Provine

Jerome H. Skolnick

Joyce Sterling

David M. Trubek

Nominations Require:

  • A nomination letter signed by at least 2 LSA members
  • OPTIONAL: other supporting materials

All supporting documents must be submitted in English and be in .DOC, .RTF, or .PDF format.

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