Richard A. Epstein

Peter and Kirsten Bedford Senior Fellow
Awards and Honors:
American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Biography: 

Richard A. Epstein, the Peter and Kirsten Bedford Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, is the Laurence A. Tisch Professor of Law, New York University Law School, and a senior lecturer at the University of Chicago.

In 2011, Epstein was a recipient of the Bradley Prize for outstanding achievement. In 2005, the College of William & Mary School of Law awarded him the Brigham-Kanner Property Rights Prize.

Epstein researches and writes in a broad range of constitutional, economic, historical, and philosophical subjects. He has taught administrative law, antitrust law, communications law, constitutional law, corporation criminal law, employment discrimination law, environmental law, food and drug law, health law, labor law, Roman law, real estate development and finance, and individual and corporate taxation.

He edited the Journal of Legal Studies (1981–91) and the Journal of Law and Economics (1991–2001).

Epstein’s most recent publication is The Classical Liberal Constitution: The Uncertain Quest for Limited Government (2013). Other books include Design for Liberty: Private Property, Public Administration, and the Rule of Law (2011); The Case against the Employee Free Choice Act (Hoover Institution Press, 2009); Supreme Neglect: How to Revive the Constitutional Protection for Private Property (2008); How the Progressives Rewrote the Constitution (2006); Overdose (2006); and Free Markets under Siege: Cartels, Politics, and Social Welfare (Hoover Institution Press, 2005).

He received a BA degree in philosophy summa cum laude from Columbia in 1964; a BA degree in law with first-class honors from Oxford University in 1966; and an LLB degree cum laude, from the Yale Law School in 1968. Upon graduation he joined the faculty at the University of Southern California, where he taught until 1972. In 1972, he visited the University of Chicago and became a regular member of the faculty the following year.

He has been a senior fellow at the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics since 1984 and was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1985. He has been a Hoover fellow since 2000.

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Recent Commentary

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Taking Opioids To Court

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, April 15, 2019

Tort liability to redress past injuries will block sensible reforms.

Featured

Striking Teachers Unions And Reforming Nevada Labor Law

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Las Vegas Review-Journal
Saturday, April 13, 2019

There is strike talk in the air from the Clark County Education Association. The bone of contention is what nationwide typically pits teachers unions against local school boards and politicians. The teachers want higher pay and better working conditions.

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The Libertarian: The Reparations Debate

interview with Richard A. Epsteinvia The Libertarian
Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Is there a case for compensating those touched by slavery’s legacy?

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Black Reparations

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, April 8, 2019

Endorsed by Democratic hopefuls, the policy is deeply flawed.

Analysis and Commentary

The Indigenous Peoples War Against Pipelines

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Forbes
Monday, April 8, 2019

The world will continue to to rely on fossil fuels for most of its energy needs. 

Interviews

Richard Epstein On The John Bachelor Show (Part 1)

interview with Richard A. Epsteinvia The John Batchelor Show
Saturday, April 6, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Richard Epstein discusses his Defining Ideas article "Administrative Law In The Crosshairs."

Interviews

Richard Epstein On The John Bachelor Show (Part 2)

interview with Richard A. Epsteinvia The John Batchelor Show
Saturday, April 6, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Richard Epstein discusses his Defining Ideas article "Administrative Law In The Crosshairs."

Richard Epstein
Analysis and Commentary

Richard Epstein Presents "The Anti-Discrimination Juggernaut"

with Richard A. Epsteinvia University of Illinois College of Law
Thursday, April 4, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Richard Epstein presents the David C. Baum Lecture on Civil Liberties and Civil Rights.

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The Libertarian: God And Money At Yale

interview with Richard A. Epsteinvia The Libertarian
Thursday, April 4, 2019

The Ivy League Law School’s controversial new policy could deny financial aid to students working with religious organizations.

In the News

Nevada Lawmakers Look To Make Housing ‘Crisis’ Worse

quoting Richard A. Epsteinvia Las Vegas Review Journal
Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Occam’s razor is a scientific theorem which essentially holds that the simplest solution to a problem is likely the most effective approach. 

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