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Graduate Student Paper Competition

The 2017 Law & Social Inquiry Graduate Student Paper Competition is now open!

The editors of Law & Social Inquiry are pleased to announce our annual competition for the best journal-length paper in the field of law and social science written by a graduate or law student. Law & Social Inquiry publishes empirical and theoretical studies of sociolegal processes from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. Entries will be accepted starting January 1, 2017 and must be received by March 1, 2017.

LSI  invites direct submissions from graduate and law students and nominations of student work from faculty. The author must be a graduate student or law student at the time the paper was written and when submitted. Faculty nominations should include a short description along with the paper and contact details for the student.   Submissions will be evaluated by our editors.  The winning submission will be sent to selected scholars for advisory reviews to aid with revisions prior to publication. The winner is typically announced at the annual Law and Society Association (LSA) meeting.  All submissions (direct and faculty nominated) are weighted equally in the competition. The winning paper will be published in Law & Social Inquiry and the author(s) will receive a total cash prize of $500 (US). The paper will also receive special recognition from LSI at the Annual Meeting of the Law and Society Association.

Please send your article as a Microsoft Word document or PDF to .  Please indicate that (1) you intend to be considered in the competition, (2) you are currently a graduate student, and (3) you have not submitted your article to other journals for publication. Submission is limited to one paper per student; articles may not be altered or resubmitted with corrections once they have been received by our office.

Submissions must include a title page with a complete mailing address, e-mail address, and phone number(s). The second page should include a 100-150 (maximum) word abstract. Beginning on the third page, all pages should be paginated.  Text, footnotes, endnotes, and references should be double-spaced in Times New Roman 12 point font and have 1.5” margins on all sides with no headers or footers.  Properly formatted submissions must not exceed 60 pages.

For additional information, please go to or Questions regarding the competition can be directed to Willa Sachs: (312) 988-6517 

Past winners

We are pleased to announce the 2016 GSPC winner,  Evelyn Atkinson! Atkinson is a Ph.D. candidate in History at the University of Chicago. Keep an eye out for her winning article, "The Burdern of Taking Care: Children, Attractive Nuisance, and the Safety First Movement"  in LSI  in 2017.  

K-Sue Park won the 2015 GSPC with her paper, "Money, Mortgages, and The Conquest of America" in which she explores early transactions for land between settlers and indigenous people and the growth of the modern American contract economy.  Check it out here:

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