Legal Education

Last week, in our first session of Advanced Legal Research at the University of Wisconsin Law school, we discussed ChatGPT as a tool for conducting legal research.  Why take the time to learn and conduct legal research if an AI can do it for you? Our students raised a lot of great points and showed a sophisticated understanding of the pros and cons of the tool.  Overall, they were pretty skeptical.

We started with a demo by asking ChatGPT
Continue Reading Law Students Assess Pros and Cons of ChatGPT as a Legal Research Tool

Feedspot, a social feed reader that curates news feeds from online sources, has recently compiled a list of the 60 Best Law Librarian Blogs and Websites.  What a great round-up of content from an impressive list of law librarians of all types!  I’m honored that WisBlawg appears as #3.
Chances are good that you can learn a thing or two from these bloggers.  As several legal commentators have attested, law librarians play an instrumental role in navigating information,
Continue Reading Directory of 60 Best Law Librarian Blogs & Websites Showcases Expertise of Law Librarians

Here is the latest faculty scholarship appearing in the University of Wisconsin Law School Legal Studies Research Papers series found on SSRN.

Since the mid-1990s, American financial assistance programs have increasingly shifted to require evidence of labor market participation as a criteria for eligibility. This shift signals a change from previous welfare
Continue Reading Recent UW Law Faculty Scholarship: The Tax-Invisible Labor Problem: Care, Work, Kinship, and Income Security Programs in the IRC; The Future of Civil Society Research in China, Hong Kong and Vietnam; Modified Textualism in Wisconsin: A Case Study; Beyond Perfect- Reforming the Economic Analysis of Public Policy; Chapter Eight- Technology and the Law: The Automobile; Foreword: Willard Hurt’s Unpublished Manuscript on Law, Technology, and Regulation; and Structuring Techlaw

On the latest episode of the WI Law in Action podcast from the UW Law Library, host Kris Turner interviews Nyamagaga Gondwe, Assistant Professor of Tax Law at the University of Wisconsin Law School and scholar of economic justice, race and the law, and tax policy.  Professor Gondwe discusses her article, “The Tax-Invisible Labor Problem: Care, Work, Kinship, and Income Security Programs in the IRC” which is forthcoming in the Boston University Law Review.
 
Gondwe
Continue Reading WI Law In Action Podcast: Nyamagaga Gondwe on the Tax-Invisible Labor Problem and the Reinforcement of Oppressive power Dynamics

Today’s post is from UW Law School Professor and Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development, Susannah Camic Tahk:

My dad, a sociologist of intellectual history, once glumly told me that people doing US intellectual history never seem to find rare archival gems anymore. Regardless of whether he was correct at the time, his always-skeptical daughter now points out that he spoke too soon.
A couple of years ago, BJ Ard, himself a trailblazer in the burgeoning
Continue Reading Professor BJ Ard Finds Lost Manuscript by Willard Hurst; Continues Discussion on Technology & the Law

November is Native American Heritage Month, a time dedicated to celebrating the rich and diverse culture, history, and contributions of Native people.  Each year, the UW–Madison campus cultivates a diverse portfolio of events in recognition of this important heritage month.  One of these events, organized by the UW Law School and the Indigenous Law Students Association (ILSA), was a flag ceremony in which thirteen Native Nations with ancestral ties to Wisconsin presented their flags.  I feel privileged that
Continue Reading Law Libraries Fostering Research & Learning on American Indian Law

The Wisconsin Law Review’s annual symposium is this weekend, October 28 and 29.  The symposium, entitled Controlling the Supreme Court: Now and “far into the future,” features a panel of national constitutional experts who will reflect on the extraordinary events of this past Supreme Court term, from overruling Roe v. Wade to new interpretive approaches in the areas of religion, gun rights, administrative, and Native American law.
More information, including a schedule, list of panelists with biographies, and registration
Continue Reading WI Law Review Hosts Symposium on the Supreme Court Now and “Far into the Future”

Business information can be an important source of intelligence for attorneys.  Carol Hassler from the Wisconsin State Law Library has compiled an excellent guide to “Researching Private and Public Businesses, Specialized Industries” in the latest Inside Track from the State Bar of Wisconsin.

She offers advice on:

  • Requesting Annual Reports
  • Finding Registered Agents and Officers
  • Examining UCC Filings
  • Researching Public Companies
  • Finding Information for Specialized Industries
  • Locating Industry Data

This guide is part of the Legal Research 101 series
Continue Reading Guide to Researching Private and Public Businesses, Specialized Industries

The UW Law Library is pleased to announce the installation of a new exhibit, “Justice for All: The Legacy of Chief Justice Shirley S. Abrahamson.”  On loan from the Chief Justice Shirley S. Abrahamson Legacy Committee, the exhibit will be on display through December 15th.
The exhibit presents the groundbreaking career of Wisconsin’s first woman justice, her impact on the Wisconsin court system, and her place in history. It highlights causes she championed—women’s rights, civil rights, public understanding
Continue Reading UW Law Library Hosts New Exhibit, “Justice for All: The Legacy of Chief Justice Shirley S. Abrahamson” 

State Bar of Wisconsin recently launched an improved interface for their Books UnBound online digital library.  The collection includes State Bar treatises, aka “the brown binders,” the Wisconsin Attorney’s Desk Reference, Wisconsin Judicial Benchbooks, and other books previously released in print only.

The new interface is a definite step up over the previous one.  It features an improved dashboard a more robust search engine with the ability to search by Boolean operators (AND, OR), proximity operators (/p, /s,
Continue Reading State Bar of Wisconsin Updates Books UnBound Interface

Over $52 million was spent on lobbying in Wisconsin in 2021. Nationally, total lobbying spending amounted to a whopping $3.73 billion.  You can follow the money with these tools.

Lobbying in Wisconsin from the Wisconsin Ethics Commission allows anyone to search and view public lobbying information.  See who is lobbying, what they are lobbying about, and how much they are spending.  You can also search by legislative proposal to view who is lobbying for or against it and how
Continue Reading Tools for Tracking Federal and Wisconsin Lobbying

Yesterday, I blogged about new scholarship by Rob Willey, Melanie Knapp, and Ashley Matthews at George Mason University Law Library that explores how and why women are frequently underrepresented in law scholarly impact rankings and suggests alternative metrics to mitigate the imbalance.
Toward the end of the paper, the authors consider the merits of a ranking based on SSRN downloads rather than or in addition to law journal citation rankings.  They correctly note that SSRN downloads:

  • capture interest from readers


Continue Reading Pros & Cons of a Law Faculty Scholarly Impact Ranking using SSRN Downloads

Several studies have found that women tend to publish less frequently than men.  However, research also shows that, per publication, women tend to be cited at the same or higher rates than men. New scholarship by Rob Willey, Melanie Knapp, and Ashley Matthews of George Mason University Law Library explores how and why women are frequently underrepresented in law scholarly impact rankings and suggests alternative metrics to mitigate the imbalance.
Most likely, women’s lower career output stems from a combination
Continue Reading New Scholarship Explores Underrepresentation of Women in Law Scholarly Impact Rankings & Proposes Alternative Metric

On the latest episode of the WI Law in Action podcast from the UW Law Library, host Kris Turner interviews UW Law School Associate Professor of Law and Co-Director of the State Democracy Research Initiative, Rob Yablon.  Yablon introduces the concept of “gerrylaundering,” a strategy used by voting district mapmakers to hold on to power by preserving key elements of their existing maps. Yablon newest article, “Gerrylaundering”, was recently published in the NYU Law Review.
Yablon on
Continue Reading WI Law In Action Podcast: Rob Yablon on the Use of “Gerrylaundering” to Lock in Favorable Voting Districts

In a surprise announcement yesterday, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) released new guidance that starting in 2026, any publications and supporting data resulting from federally funded research must be openly accessible on the day it’s published.
Here’s more from Ars Technica:
The US government is likely to be the world’s largest funder of scientific research… Yet, for decades, the scientific publishing system was set up so that the government (much less the people
Continue Reading All Publications & Supporting Data from Federally Funded Research must be Openly Accessible from First Publication by 2026