About the Summer Institute

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2019 Summer Institute in Law and Economics: Regulation of Consumer Markets

July 8-19, 2019
The University of Chicago
Law School
1111 East 60th Street
Chicago, Illinois, USA

The eighth annual Summer Institute Program is designed for international faculty, with courses to help you integrate law and economics into teaching and research.

Study the Field of Law and Economics at its Birthplace

The University of Chicago is the birthplace of law and economics, and it continues to be the most influential source of scholarship and innovation in the field. At the University of Chicago, Nobel Laureate economists Gary Becker, Ronald Coase, George Stigler, and Milton Friedman worked together with brilliant legal minds like Richard Posner to change the foundation of legal thought in the United States, transforming entire fields of law over the past 50 years.

The Summer Institute in Law and Economics has created a network of well over 300 scholars from around the world who are committed to improving law and policy in their own countries, and who are collaborating to bring economic analysis to the forefront of legal scholarship. The Summer Institute provides legal scholars with the tools and training to bring law and economics into their own classroom and research.

Whether you have already participated in the Summer Institute or are exploring this exciting opportunity for the first time, we invite you to Chicago to learn advanced skills in law and economics.


The program for the 2019 Summer Institute will have four subject units and several special lectures. Each unit will include five two-hour lectures, all in English. Required reading materials in English will be distributed about 30 days in advance of the Summer Institute.

2019 Subject Units

Law, Technology, and Competition —  Randy Picker

These are unusually interesting times at the intersection of law, technology, and competition. The emergence of the large tech platforms, such as Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon pose interesting practical and theoretical issues for competition and regulatory policy. In this summer course, we will look at some of the history associated with the regulation of these types of industries as well as the way different legal systems are responding to the dominant positions that these firms hold. The analysis will be situated in law, technology and economics.

The Behavioral Law & Economics of Consumer Choice —  Jonathan Masur

This series of lectures examines consumer behavior through the lens of behavioral law & economics.  It explores how fairness norms, bounded willpower, salience bias, and choice architecture affect consumer decision-making across a variety of domains.  The lecture series will address behavioral law & economics in the context of consumer contracting (such as contracts for credit cards and mortgages), financial investment and retirement savings decisions, purchasing and product choices, and more.

Property and Markets —  Lee Fennell

This course will examine interactions between property rights and market transactions.  We will explore the law and economics of property entitlements and consider a variety of market failures that arise in real and personal property contexts. Topics will include eminent domain, land use controls, private community governance, commons and anticommons problems, urban agglomeration, housing, and the sharing economy.  Throughout, we will observe how property rights and contractual arrangements might substitute for or complement each other.  We will compare emerging models of resource access with traditional models of ownership, and discuss possible future trends, opportunities, and innovations in markets for land and other resources. 

Economic Analysis of Consumer Protection Law —  Omri Ben-Shahar

This lecture series provides an economic framework to examine regulation of consumer markets. It explores the economic justifications and critiques of rules that mandate disclosure of information, rules that regulate quality or other attributes of products and services, how default rules and nudges affect consumer choice, protection of consumer privacy, and more.

Scholars Colloquium

In addition to lectures from University of Chicago faculty, the participants present their own scholarly work to each other and to the UChicago faculty in an academic conference setting. This experience allows the scholars to get valuable feedback and direction on their own work, and to contribute to the other participants’ work.


The fee for the Summer Institute is $4,250, which includes lodging, two meals (breakfast and lunch) per day, all organized social activities, some dinners, and food during class breaks. Participants will be housed in modern University of Chicago student residence halls in Hyde Park, Chicago, conveniently located near the Law School.

A nonrefundable deposit of $500 is required upon acceptance to the Summer Institute.

Many universities reimburse fees for participation and travel to educational events and conferences. Check with your academic department to see if the Summer Institute qualifies.

Travel costs are the responsibility of each participant and the participant’s academic department. The Law School does not reimburse travel or offer travel assistance.

Who Should Apply

The University of Chicago invites legal scholars from Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America to apply to the two-week program. Professors, assistant professors, lecturers, and postdoctoral fellows are encouraged to apply. Policymakers and judges, as well as researchers from other disciplines—including economics, finance, and political science—are also encouraged to apply.

Applicants must have sufficient command of the English language to complete the required readings and participate in rigorous classroom discussion. All courses and materials will be offered in English without translation.

Necessary documentation for the visa application process for travel to the United States will be provided upon acceptance to the institute by the Coase-Sandor Institute for Law and Economics.

How to Apply

Applications should be made online at http://www.law.uchicago.edu/lawecon/summerschool/apply.

We ask applicants to provide statements outlining their background in law and economics, current research interest, and reasons for interest in attending the Summer Institute. Applicants must provide a current CV in English detailing educational background, employment history, and a list of publications.

If you have questions, please contact Norma R. de Yagcier, Program Coordinator of the Coase-Sandor Institute for Law and Economics, at ndeyagci@uchicago.edu.