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Tom Ginsburg

Class of 2017-18

Tom Ginsburg
Tom Ginsburg

University of Chicago
American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Award

Legal scholar Tom Ginsburg has revolutionized the way we understand the function and content of constitutions in law and society. He is a pioneer in applying multidisciplinary social scientific analysis to comparative law, particularly to comparative constitutional law. His groundbreaking work in that area has been widely recognized as transforming the field.

He co-directs the Comparative Constitutions Project, an effort funded by the National Science Foundation to gather and analyze the constitutions of all independent nation–states since 1789. Ginsburg is one of the most successful law academics to translate scholarship into policy. His findings and expertise have influenced judicial and constitutional reform around the world.

Ginsburg received a law degree and a doctorate in jurisprudence and social policy, both from the University of California, Berkeley. He served as a legal adviser at the Iran–US Claims Tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands; joined the faculty of the University of Illinois College of Law; and later joined the University of Chicago Law School.

Ginsburg is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Honors include the University of Illinois Sheth Award for International Faculty Achievement; Best Dataset Award, American Political Science Association Section on Comparative Democratization for the Comparative Constitutions Project; a Fulbright Award to study at Italy’s University of Trento; and the Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Award.

His books include Judicial Review in New Democracies, which won the C. Herman Pritchett Award from the American Political Science Association, as did The Endurance of National Constitutions. He has published 133 articles in peer-reviewed journals. Brian Leiter’s Law School Reports ranks Ginsburg fifth among the 15 Most-Cited Law and Social Science Faculty from 2010 to 2014. He is the second-youngest scholar to appear on the list and the only scholar younger than age fifty to appear in the top five.

As a Faculty Fellow, Ginsburg will collaborate with faculty and students at the School of Law as well as the Bush School of Government and Public Service.