Best LLM in competition law and complementary subjects


Nail
Hello everyone,
I am interested in competition law and currently doing research on it. As part of the Phd I am enrolled in, I will have the opportunity next year do some research abroad (and pursue and LLM degree, if that is the case). I am convinced that doing that at a top US law school would be the best option, but I am not sure which one would be the best for my purposes. I am particularly interested in the international and comparative aspects of competition law, and to that end a few school seem to distinguish themselves for the type of teaching they offer. Chicago is obviously great because it is the place where the new liberal approach to regulation was born, and also because its university offers excellent courses on economic theories which lie at the intersection with competition law and would prove very useful. However, also Northwestern and NYU seem equally appealing because of thei courses they offer on telecoms and international regulation, respectively. Berkeley is home to great professor of antitrust law and the cradle of a well known school of "law and economics", whose understanding might be extremely useful for my thesis. Finally, Harvard is the place where the paradigm of regulatory competition was born and probably has the highest-quality teaching after Yale.
I am now applying to all of the above, but which ones should I prioritize?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
Nail
Hello everyone,
I am interested in competition law and currently doing research on it. As part of the Phd I am enrolled in, I will have the opportunity next year do some research abroad (and pursue and LLM degree, if that is the case). I am convinced that doing that at a top US law school would be the best option, but I am not sure which one would be the best for my purposes. I am particularly interested in the international and comparative aspects of competition law, and to that end a few school seem to distinguish themselves for the type of teaching they offer. Chicago is obviously great because it is the place where the new liberal approach to regulation was born, and also because its university offers excellent courses on economic theories which lie at the intersection with competition law and would prove very useful. However, also Northwestern and NYU seem equally appealing because of thei courses they offer on telecoms and international regulation, respectively. Berkeley is home to great professor of antitrust law and the cradle of a well known school of "law and economics", whose understanding might be extremely useful for my thesis. Finally, Harvard is the place where the paradigm of regulatory competition was born and probably has the highest-quality teaching after Yale.
I am now applying to all of the above, but which ones should I prioritize?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
Nail
quote
gip
I don't want to be a Berkeley troll, but look here: http://professorgeradin.blogs.com/professor_geradins_weblog/2005/03/us_law_schools_.html
It's been a while since Prof. Geradin wrote that blog entry, but as far as I know the people named have not moved. You can also add Carl Shapiro at the business school in Berkeley. I don't know how strong your economic background is, but if you can take full advantage of the economics and law faculty at Berkeley teaching antitrust and industrial organization, there really is no better place. Chicago offers little today. Harvard retains a strong antitrust law faculty (Kaplow and Elhauge) but in antitrust economics it's pretty much average; you would have to go to MIT for good antitrust economics. Herbert Hovenkamp, a superb antitrust law scholar (and reportedly a great teacher, I saw him in conferences and he certaily was excellent), teaches at the University of Iowa.
I understand that you are interested in research, so you should go to a place where you have access to first-rate scholars. Hence my advice. But if you are primarily interested in course work, NYU used to offer (I suppose they still do) a specific LL.M. in antitrust and regulation, with specialised courses which you will not find elsewhere. Hope this helps. Good luck.
I don't want to be a Berkeley troll, but look here: http://professorgeradin.blogs.com/professor_geradins_weblog/2005/03/us_law_schools_.html
It's been a while since Prof. Geradin wrote that blog entry, but as far as I know the people named have not moved. You can also add Carl Shapiro at the business school in Berkeley. I don't know how strong your economic background is, but if you can take full advantage of the economics and law faculty at Berkeley teaching antitrust and industrial organization, there really is no better place. Chicago offers little today. Harvard retains a strong antitrust law faculty (Kaplow and Elhauge) but in antitrust economics it's pretty much average; you would have to go to MIT for good antitrust economics. Herbert Hovenkamp, a superb antitrust law scholar (and reportedly a great teacher, I saw him in conferences and he certaily was excellent), teaches at the University of Iowa.
I understand that you are interested in research, so you should go to a place where you have access to first-rate scholars. Hence my advice. But if you are primarily interested in course work, NYU used to offer (I suppose they still do) a specific LL.M. in antitrust and regulation, with specialised courses which you will not find elsewhere. Hope this helps. Good luck.
quote
Irish_Guy
Most of this advice is solid, but the comment about Chicago is way off.

The University of Chicago is the birthplace of law & economics, and in my opinion, still the best place to be. I did my LL.M and J.S.D. degrees there, focusing on antitrust economics. I went there for a reason, and I wasnt disappointed. The experience was incredible. You can take price theory with Gary Becker in the 1st year Ph.D economics program for credit during your LL.M. I conducted my doctoral research under Judge Posner, which was an opportunity I cant imagine getting anywhere else. Judges Wood and Easterbrook also teach at the school, and are widely respected in the antitrust field. Judge Wood is especially interested in international antitrust.

Professor Picker is, perhaps, the best teacher I ever had - his network industries class was the toughest and most rewarding I've ever taken (about the regulation of natural monopoly). Far from offering "little today", I doubt there is anywhere better in the world to study antitrust and economics than Chicago. I did my homework before going to the expense of a U.S. LL.M., and every practitioner and academic said "for antitrust/economics, Chicago is the only place you want to be." (the only reservation being from some European colleagues who warned me not to become too "Chicago-oriented"!)

The rest of what GIP wrote is accurate. Berkeley is obviously an exceptional school. Hovenkamp is great at Iowa, though I think there are some advantages to attending a more prestigious university. If you're looking outside the top-10 U.S. law schools, though, you should also look at George Mason, which has an excellent program in law & economics.

Harvard is terrific, of course. Several of my antitrust-oriented Chicago classmates turned HLS down, though, primarily because Chicago is the better place to study competition law/economics, and it's a lot easier gaining access to faculty at UofC. I've heard that the classes with the best Harvard professors can fill up quickly (I never studied there, though, so I can't speak definitively).

I cant speak too highly about Stanford. However, I don't think it's as strong in antitrust as some other top schools. If you're interested in IP and antitrust, though, it would be a great place to go (along with Berkeley). Mark Lemley is a major figure in this field, and offers an IP and antitrust class every year.

NYU has a well-regarded LL.M in trade regulation, as GIP mentioned. Personally, I'd rather look elsewhere because I have a preference for a smaller program. This is a matter of personal preference, though.

The very best of luck with your applications. Please feel free to write back with any questions.
Most of this advice is solid, but the comment about Chicago is way off.

The University of Chicago is the birthplace of law & economics, and in my opinion, still the best place to be. I did my LL.M and J.S.D. degrees there, focusing on antitrust economics. I went there for a reason, and I wasn’t disappointed. The experience was incredible. You can take price theory with Gary Becker in the 1st year Ph.D economics program for credit during your LL.M. I conducted my doctoral research under Judge Posner, which was an opportunity I can’t imagine getting anywhere else. Judges Wood and Easterbrook also teach at the school, and are widely respected in the antitrust field. Judge Wood is especially interested in international antitrust.

Professor Picker is, perhaps, the best teacher I ever had - his network industries class was the toughest and most rewarding I've ever taken (about the regulation of natural monopoly). Far from offering "little today", I doubt there is anywhere better in the world to study antitrust and economics than Chicago. I did my homework before going to the expense of a U.S. LL.M., and every practitioner and academic said "for antitrust/economics, Chicago is the only place you want to be." (the only reservation being from some European colleagues who warned me not to become too "Chicago-oriented"!)

The rest of what GIP wrote is accurate. Berkeley is obviously an exceptional school. Hovenkamp is great at Iowa, though I think there are some advantages to attending a more prestigious university. If you're looking outside the top-10 U.S. law schools, though, you should also look at George Mason, which has an excellent program in law & economics.

Harvard is terrific, of course. Several of my antitrust-oriented Chicago classmates turned HLS down, though, primarily because Chicago is the better place to study competition law/economics, and it's a lot easier gaining access to faculty at UofC. I've heard that the classes with the best Harvard professors can fill up quickly (I never studied there, though, so I can't speak definitively).

I can’t speak too highly about Stanford. However, I don't think it's as strong in antitrust as some other top schools. If you're interested in IP and antitrust, though, it would be a great place to go (along with Berkeley). Mark Lemley is a major figure in this field, and offers an IP and antitrust class every year.

NYU has a well-regarded LL.M in trade regulation, as GIP mentioned. Personally, I'd rather look elsewhere because I have a preference for a smaller program. This is a matter of personal preference, though.

The very best of luck with your applications. Please feel free to write back with any questions.
quote
Nail
First of all, many thanks to both of you for the extremely precise and detailed advices. Honestly, I have to say I agree with most of the points you made there about the quality of the schools...except what you guys say about Chicago and NYU-respectively. Combining the advices of the two and one other thread on this topic (http://www.llm-guide.com/board/49116) made me realize there seems to be a bit of a rivalry between NYU and Chicago.
In any case, I feel lucky now that I've found someone who can advise me on that. I'm very grateful for your attention and for your sharing your experience with me.

I had already seen that post in Professor Gerardin's blog, the reason why I posed the question again here is that I wasn't totally convinced all by what he wrote. To be more precise, I couldn't believe Chicago ranked only third. I had always heard that UofC is THE place to be for antitrust: not only because of its terrific faculty (Posner, Becker and Landes may not be that active any more, and not very willing to supervise thesis), but also and more importantly because of the whole environment that seems to be designed around that! I mean: first of all, you have three excellent antitrust courses. Secondly, you can take many many courses in the law school that give you the basic understanding of why and how antitrust (and not only) regulation works. Third, you can take advantage of the nearby department of economics, which is also ranked in the world top 3 I believe. Plus I have once visited there and I've been struck by the stimulating atmosphere and the positive attitude demonstrated by professors vis a vis the students (something that is really way different from European university system). This actually is an important point in case you want to write a thesis, and staying for longer than one year on campus.

If you think that Harvard would not be as easy to work with professors, then it's better I don't even apply for it. This is also because beyond of the fame I don't feel much attraction from there, since there are no specialized courses besides the basic antitrust one in that area. I would think Harvard is better for a more generalistic LLM, probably the best for those who want to find a great job in their country thereafter.

Re: NYU, by contrast, I have to confess I feel almost as attracted as by Chicago. The reason is that it offers 9 (!) antitrust courses (for a listing see: https://its.law.nyu.edu/courses/index.cfm?sortLabel=Semester&searchButton=1&keyword=antitrust&viewFirstYear=&CourseInstructorId=&CourseCode=&CourseTerm=&ExactCode=&Block=&CourseCredits=&startTime=&endTime=&location=&pastSemesters=Y&page=1) and is home to the most famous scholar in the area I am working on, international antitrust (the scholar is E. Fox, of course). I don't know much about Harry First but I heard also some appreciation about his classes...and of course I heard very well about Rubinfieldìs class in Antitrust Law and economics (which he teaches every year also at a summer school in Europe). IN addition, this law school is probably the best one for international law, which is also at the very core of my research and so another point for NYU. I don't worry that much for the number of LLMs there, in fact I think it's just a positive thing for networking and it doesn't prevent me from doing my research as well as we were few international students around.

Berkeley is also good, but I think it's more the choice for who really has a stronger background in economics and wants to develop it further in the field of antitrust and industrial organization. I know that also in the law school antitrust teaching is great, but I have also been told that prof. Shelanski is both professor and lawyer and recently dean of the law school... so he has really few time for working with students (although he is great when he does that). Plus prof. Rubinfield is teaching in NYU in the Spring term (see the link above). Plus I have already made a lot of research in IP, I think I would go here if I wanted to continue on that route but I decided I want to turn the page (which is also the reason I would not consider Stanford, btw -despite the fact I know Mark Lemley from many of its well-written articles in antitrust and IP).

Northwestern seems good, but perhaps too practical: courses are mostly given by practicioners and seem more oriented to address issues related to litigation of US antitrust law -which is a bit far from what I want to research on.

To conclude, I have also looked into the LLMs offered in Europe (more precisely in the UK) and I decided I will apply also to King's college and UCL. They both have a high number of competition law courses (see here: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/schools/law/courses/competition/courses.html and here: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/laws/experts/index.shtml?area_competition), but honestly I was more impressed by the faculty of King's....what's your take on that? Do you think the experience there could compare with an LLM of the ones mentioned above? More precisely, if I later had to come back to Europe, isn't it smarter to take my master there and study the law of the jurisdiction where I will live? This, honestly, is my eternal doubt. Cause I suspect the education in US would be better.

Many thanks for your advice
N
First of all, many thanks to both of you for the extremely precise and detailed advices. Honestly, I have to say I agree with most of the points you made there about the quality of the schools...except what you guys say about Chicago and NYU-respectively. Combining the advices of the two and one other thread on this topic (http://www.llm-guide.com/board/49116) made me realize there seems to be a bit of a rivalry between NYU and Chicago.
In any case, I feel lucky now that I've found someone who can advise me on that. I'm very grateful for your attention and for your sharing your experience with me.

I had already seen that post in Professor Gerardin's blog, the reason why I posed the question again here is that I wasn't totally convinced all by what he wrote. To be more precise, I couldn't believe Chicago ranked only third. I had always heard that UofC is THE place to be for antitrust: not only because of its terrific faculty (Posner, Becker and Landes may not be that active any more, and not very willing to supervise thesis), but also and more importantly because of the whole environment that seems to be designed around that! I mean: first of all, you have three excellent antitrust courses. Secondly, you can take many many courses in the law school that give you the basic understanding of why and how antitrust (and not only) regulation works. Third, you can take advantage of the nearby department of economics, which is also ranked in the world top 3 I believe. Plus I have once visited there and I've been struck by the stimulating atmosphere and the positive attitude demonstrated by professors vis a vis the students (something that is really way different from European university system). This actually is an important point in case you want to write a thesis, and staying for longer than one year on campus.

If you think that Harvard would not be as easy to work with professors, then it's better I don't even apply for it. This is also because beyond of the fame I don't feel much attraction from there, since there are no specialized courses besides the basic antitrust one in that area. I would think Harvard is better for a more generalistic LLM, probably the best for those who want to find a great job in their country thereafter.

Re: NYU, by contrast, I have to confess I feel almost as attracted as by Chicago. The reason is that it offers 9 (!) antitrust courses (for a listing see: https://its.law.nyu.edu/courses/index.cfm?sortLabel=Semester&searchButton=1&keyword=antitrust&viewFirstYear=&CourseInstructorId=&CourseCode=&CourseTerm=&ExactCode=&Block=&CourseCredits=&startTime=&endTime=&location=&pastSemesters=Y&page=1) and is home to the most famous scholar in the area I am working on, international antitrust (the scholar is E. Fox, of course). I don't know much about Harry First but I heard also some appreciation about his classes...and of course I heard very well about Rubinfieldìs class in Antitrust Law and economics (which he teaches every year also at a summer school in Europe). IN addition, this law school is probably the best one for international law, which is also at the very core of my research and so another point for NYU. I don't worry that much for the number of LLMs there, in fact I think it's just a positive thing for networking and it doesn't prevent me from doing my research as well as we were few international students around.

Berkeley is also good, but I think it's more the choice for who really has a stronger background in economics and wants to develop it further in the field of antitrust and industrial organization. I know that also in the law school antitrust teaching is great, but I have also been told that prof. Shelanski is both professor and lawyer and recently dean of the law school... so he has really few time for working with students (although he is great when he does that). Plus prof. Rubinfield is teaching in NYU in the Spring term (see the link above). Plus I have already made a lot of research in IP, I think I would go here if I wanted to continue on that route but I decided I want to turn the page (which is also the reason I would not consider Stanford, btw -despite the fact I know Mark Lemley from many of its well-written articles in antitrust and IP).

Northwestern seems good, but perhaps too practical: courses are mostly given by practicioners and seem more oriented to address issues related to litigation of US antitrust law -which is a bit far from what I want to research on.

To conclude, I have also looked into the LLMs offered in Europe (more precisely in the UK) and I decided I will apply also to King's college and UCL. They both have a high number of competition law courses (see here: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/schools/law/courses/competition/courses.html and here: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/laws/experts/index.shtml?area_competition), but honestly I was more impressed by the faculty of King's....what's your take on that? Do you think the experience there could compare with an LLM of the ones mentioned above? More precisely, if I later had to come back to Europe, isn't it smarter to take my master there and study the law of the jurisdiction where I will live? This, honestly, is my eternal doubt. Cause I suspect the education in US would be better.

Many thanks for your advice
N
quote
gip
Nail, I think you got it all quite right. To the other poster, sorry if I seemed dismissive of Chicago, it was not my intention. It remains outstanding in economics, and the law school is great, but overall the offerings in antitrust law appear below the glory associated to its name in atitrust circles. Posner and Easterbook are no longer teaching antitrust courses. Of course you can take a course in price theory with Gary Becker, and you will find stimulating courses -not about antitrust- by Epstein and Eric Posner (although I have heard conflicting reports about their teaching). If you are strongly economics-oriented, it's definitely a place to consider.
I know little of the student experience in London. Certainly great people teaching at King's (Whish, Wils, David Elliott, David Bailey who is a very young and talented scholar). My impression is that these programs are more similar to what you can find at the NYU LL.M.: a cluster of very focused course offerings on antitrust law, antitrust economics and regulation. You will not find this at most of the U.S. schools we are talking about here. So, again,if course offerings and the people teaching them are your priority, NYU or the UK seem the safer bets. If you are not interested in life in NY and want the U.S. university campus experience + you are confident you will obtain access to -and posibilities to interact with- great faculty, irrespective of the course offerings, the other schools are better. If you are essentially an economist, Chicago is a great place, assuming your interests are not exclusively focused on antitrust. Beyond the academics, you may want to consider also the life style and overall experience: life in NY is not the same as in Chicago and the SF Bay Area. This is of course a matter of personal taste, but I keep longing for the Bay Area, the beauty of the nature and landscapes around, the thriving Silicon Valley, the fog over the Golden Gate...
I see that you have given very serious thought to all this, your first post just seemed to say "Chicago because of the Chicago school", and I was worried that the offerings at the law school today might disappoint your expectations. Sorry I was a little blunt when I said "little to offer today".
Nail, I think you got it all quite right. To the other poster, sorry if I seemed dismissive of Chicago, it was not my intention. It remains outstanding in economics, and the law school is great, but overall the offerings in antitrust law appear below the glory associated to its name in atitrust circles. Posner and Easterbook are no longer teaching antitrust courses. Of course you can take a course in price theory with Gary Becker, and you will find stimulating courses -not about antitrust- by Epstein and Eric Posner (although I have heard conflicting reports about their teaching). If you are strongly economics-oriented, it's definitely a place to consider.
I know little of the student experience in London. Certainly great people teaching at King's (Whish, Wils, David Elliott, David Bailey who is a very young and talented scholar). My impression is that these programs are more similar to what you can find at the NYU LL.M.: a cluster of very focused course offerings on antitrust law, antitrust economics and regulation. You will not find this at most of the U.S. schools we are talking about here. So, again,if course offerings and the people teaching them are your priority, NYU or the UK seem the safer bets. If you are not interested in life in NY and want the U.S. university campus experience + you are confident you will obtain access to -and posibilities to interact with- great faculty, irrespective of the course offerings, the other schools are better. If you are essentially an economist, Chicago is a great place, assuming your interests are not exclusively focused on antitrust. Beyond the academics, you may want to consider also the life style and overall experience: life in NY is not the same as in Chicago and the SF Bay Area. This is of course a matter of personal taste, but I keep longing for the Bay Area, the beauty of the nature and landscapes around, the thriving Silicon Valley, the fog over the Golden Gate...
I see that you have given very serious thought to all this, your first post just seemed to say "Chicago because of the Chicago school", and I was worried that the offerings at the law school today might disappoint your expectations. Sorry I was a little blunt when I said "little to offer today".
quote
These are great comments. However, I want to say that there is rough diamond in Femi Alese of London Metropolitan University. He taught me last year and I can say he's one of the best young scholars around. He's published widely and has been cited by courts in the EU too. For me, it was like being in Chicago when I was in his class because he combined price theory well with competition. I am back in my country now and intend to go to Chicago with the experience I got from my LL.M at London Metropolitan University.
These are great comments. However, I want to say that there is rough diamond in Femi Alese of London Metropolitan University. He taught me last year and I can say he's one of the best young scholars around. He's published widely and has been cited by courts in the EU too. For me, it was like being in Chicago when I was in his class because he combined price theory well with competition. I am back in my country now and intend to go to Chicago with the experience I got from my LL.M at London Metropolitan University.
quote
harjo
Dear all,

Perhaps I am really late in responding to the dynamics of the discussion. However, I would like to ensure that I make the right decision before applying for law schools.

I am from Indonesia. This tells you a lot about how foreign the programs you guys were discussing to me. Are there any economics disciplines available in the LLM program in both Chicago or NYU? Is econometrics discipline available in the universities you guys mentioned?

I am not interested in LLM research course. I am interested in full-time LLM program. Please advise me on this. I appreciate any insight.
Dear all,

Perhaps I am really late in responding to the dynamics of the discussion. However, I would like to ensure that I make the right decision before applying for law schools.

I am from Indonesia. This tells you a lot about how foreign the programs you guys were discussing to me. Are there any economics disciplines available in the LLM program in both Chicago or NYU? Is econometrics discipline available in the universities you guys mentioned?

I am not interested in LLM research course. I am interested in full-time LLM program. Please advise me on this. I appreciate any insight.
quote
Hi guys,

I also am particularly interested in Antitrust, law and economics and regulation in general.

It is with the perspective of a thesis on the specific subject of companies too big to fail and the regulation challenges they pose that I apply for the LLM programs.

However, I am a practicing business lawyer and I also wish the LLM to further my professional agenda with networking and advanced courses in corporate legal topics.

I have been admitted to several schools (Columbia, UofC, NYU, ...) and am awaiting several other answers.

I have read all your comments on the more academic perspective of the subject matter, would you anyone have anyrthing to add about networking, reputation and the combination of those concerns with academic opportunities?

Thnks in advance,

A.
Hi guys,

I also am particularly interested in Antitrust, law and economics and regulation in general.

It is with the perspective of a thesis on the specific subject of companies too big to fail and the regulation challenges they pose that I apply for the LLM programs.

However, I am a practicing business lawyer and I also wish the LLM to further my professional agenda with networking and advanced courses in corporate legal topics.

I have been admitted to several schools (Columbia, UofC, NYU, ...) and am awaiting several other answers.

I have read all your comments on the more academic perspective of the subject matter, would you anyone have anyrthing to add about networking, reputation and the combination of those concerns with academic opportunities?

Thnks in advance,

A.
quote

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