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Early Post-Law School Careers of Women and Men Lawyers in U.S. and German Cities

Authors: John Hagan, Hans Merkens, Patricia Parker, and Gabriele Plickert

International Study of Lawyers

Berlin – Frankfurt am Main – New York City – Washington D.C.

Free University Berlin and Law Associations of Berlin and Frankfurt


Internationale Anwaltsstudie

Berlin – Frankfurt am Main – New York City – Washington D.C.

Freie Universität Berlin und RAK Berlin – Frankfurt




The Comparative Study

This research is expanding a national U.S. study of lawyers ( the American Bar Foundation’s After the JD Study) to include two cities in Germany – Frankfurt am Main and Berlin. This is a comparative study of the entry and advancement of female and male lawyers in the business and political capitals of these two countries. The project extends ongoing comparative research on the legal profession in the U.S. and Canada to Germany.

Please click here to view slides that discuss the objectives of the study.

Investigators and Researchers:

  • Professor John Hagan – Northwestern University and American Bar Foundation
  • Dr. Gabriele Plickert – American Bar Foundation
  • Professor Dr. Hans Merkens – Freie Universität Berlin
  • Patricia Parker – University of Toronto


  • Dr. Christine Hoffman and Heike Steinbach-Rohn, Rechtsanwaltskammer Frankfurt and Main
  • Marion Pietrusky und Benno Schick, Rechtsanwaltskammer Berlin


  • Law School Admission Council
  • American Bar Foundation
  • Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung TransCoop

Conference Presentations

2012  “Women in Legal Practice: Local and Global Perspectives” Session Organizer with Carole Silver, Steven Boutcher, and Ulrike Schultz for the International Conference on Law and Society. Honolulu, HI, June 5-8.

2012  Plickert, Gabriele and John Hagan. “Early Post-Law Careers of Lawyers in U.S. and German Cities: A Comparative Study of Work, Family, and Childbearing.” Annual Meeting of the Eastern Sociological Society. New York, NY, Feb. 23-26.

2010  Plickert, Gabriele. “What Rules the Ethical Rule? A Snapshot of Legal Cultures in the United States and Germany.” International Legal Ethics Conference IV, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, July 15-17.

2010   International Symposium on Comparative Studies of the Legal Profession. Free University, Berlin, Germany, April 16-17. (Conference Organizer: Dr. Gabriele Plickert.)  

Presentation Topics: 
Hagan, John. Introduction to the Comparative Study of Young Lawyers in German and U.S. Cities 
Plickert, Gabriele and John Hagan. A Comparison of Professional Careers and Work-Life Balance 
Merkens, Hans. Law School Education and Law School Practice
Plickert, Gabriele. Satisfaction, Personal Well-being, and Future Aspirations


(Left to right: Patricia Parker, Prof. John Hagan, Prof. Robert L. Nelson, Prof. Ulrike Schultz, and Prof. Cynthia Fuchs Epstein)

(Left to right: Dr. Dr. Dr. Lutz Simon, President of RAK Frankfurt am Main, and Irene Schmidt, President of RAK Berlin)


Special Guests: 

Prof. Cynthia Fuchs Epstein – City University of New York, Sociology

Prof. Robert Nelson – Director of the ABF and Northwestern University, Sociology

Prof. Dr. Ulrike Schultz – Akad. Oberrätin, FernUniversität in Hagen, Law School

Prof. Dr. Dr. Dr. Lutz Simon – President of the Rechtsanwaltskammer Frankfurt am Main

Irene Schmidt – President of the Rechtsanwaltskammer Berlin


Publications and Reports

Plickert, Gabriele and Hans Merkens.2012/13. "Arbeitszeit und Karriere: Auswirkungen des Geschlechts auf den Berufsalltag junger Anwältinnen und Anwälte. - Hours of Work and Careers: The Effects of Gender on Professional Careers of Young Lawyers."  Zeitschrift für Rechtssoziologie 33, Heft 1, S. 77-105. 

Plickert, Gabriele. 2012. “Diversity in the Legal Profession: Comparing Professional Work and Personal Lives of Female Lawyers in U.S.and GermanCities“, p. 90-101, In IILPReview: The State of Diversity and Inclusion in the Legal Profession, published by the Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession (IILP).

Plickert, Gabriele and John Hagan. 2011. "Professional Work and the Timing of Family Formation among Young Lawyers in U.S. and German Cities." International Journal of the Legal Profession 18(3): 237-261.

Hagan, John and Gabriele Plickert. 2012. “Early Post-Law School Careers of Lawyers in U.S. and German Cities. A Comparative Study of Work, Family, and Childbearing.” Report prepared for the Law School Admission Council, Grants Report 12-01, Newton, PA, USA.

Plickert, Gabriele and Hans Merkens. 2011. “Deutsche Anwaltsstudie: Ergebnisse zur Befragung junger Rechtsanwältinnen und Rechtsanwälte aus Berlin und Frankfurt.“ Report preparared for theRechtsanwaltskammern in Franfurt am Main and Berlin, Germany. Acess under: mitglieder/03_02b_Internationales/DeutscheAnwaltsstudie_Ergebnisse_2011.pdf



For questions or further information about the study please contact:

Dr. Gabriele Plickert

American Bar Foundation

Phone: 312-988-6585


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