Faculty Profiles

Joanna M. Shepherd

Joanna M. Shepherd

Professor of Law

Areas of Expertise

Analytical Methods, Law and Economics, Torts, Health Policy

Curriculum Vitae

Joanna Shepherd teaches Torts, Law and Economics, Analytical Methods for Lawyers, Statistics for Lawyers, and Legal and Economic Issues in Health Policy. Before joining Emory, Professor Shepherd was an assistant professor of economics at Clemson University. In addition to her position at the law school, she currently serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Emory Department of Economics.

Much of Professor Shepherd's research focuses on topics in law and economics, especially on empirical analyses of legal changes and legal institutions. Her recent research has empirically examined issues related to the healthcare industry, tort reform, employment law, litigation practice, and judicial behavior. She has published broadly in law reviews, legal journals and economics journals. Recent publications include: “Uncovering the Silent Victims of the American Medical Liability System” in the Vanderbilt Law Review; “The Partisan Foundations of Judicial Campaign Finance” in the Southern California Law Review; “The Partisan Price of Justice: An Empirical Analysis of Campaign Contributions and Judicial Decisions” in the New York University Law Review, “Products Liability and Economic Activity: An Empirical Analysis of Tort Reform’s Impact on Businesses, Employment, and Production” in the Vanderbilt Law Review, “Money, Politics, and Impartial Justice,” in the Duke Law Journal; “Tort Reform’s Winners and Losers: The Competing Effects of Care and Activity Levels,” in the UCLA Law Review; “Deterrence versus Brutalization: Capital Punishment’s Differing Impacts Among States,” in the Michigan Law Review; “Do Appointed Judges Vote Strategically,” in the Duke Law Journal;  “The Influence of Retention Politics on Judges’ Voting,” in the Journal of Legal Studies and “Tort Reform and Accidental Deaths,” in The Journal of Law and Economics. Professor Shepherd also has published in The American Law and Economics Review, The Hastings Law Journal, The Florida Law Review, The Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law, The Review of Law and Economics, Criminal Law & Economics, Criminology and Public Policy, Economic Inquiry, The Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics, Foundations and Trends in Microeconomics and The Antitrust Bulletin. In addition to publishing dozens of academic articles, Professor Shepherd is the author of two textbooks: The Economic Analysis of Law and The Economics of Industrial Organization. She has been featured on several TV and radio programs and has been interviewed about her research in numerous newspapers including The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. In addition, she has testified about her empirical work before the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, before the Committee on Law and Justice of the National Academy of Sciences, and before several state legislative committees.

Professor Shepherd has considerable experience as an economic and statistical expert.  She has authored numerous expert reports, testified at deposition and at trial in both federal and administrative courts, and provided public policy research and white papers for many clients.  Her expert work has examined issues relating to market power and competition, economic impact analyses of proposed regulations, enforcement actions by federal agencies, and damage computations.  Professor Shepherd has also been invited to present her scholarly work by faculties at leading universities around the country including Stanford Law School, The University of Chicago Law School, NYU School of Law, The University of Michigan School of Law, Northwestern University School of Law, Duke Law School, Georgetown School of Law, and The University of Southern California School of Law.  She also frequently teaches economics courses to law professors and federal and state judges.

Education: PhD, Emory University (Law and Economics, and Econometrics), 2002; BBA, Baylor University, 1997 


Economic Analysis for Lawyers (forthcoming 2013) (with Henry N. Butler and Christopher Drahozal).

The Economics of Industrial Organization (2003) (with William G. Shepherd).

Journal Articles and Essays

"Uncovering the Silent Victims of the American Medical Liability System," 67 Vanderbilt Law Review (forthcoming, 2014).

"Is More Information Always Better? Mandatory Disclosure Regulations in the Prescription Drug Market," 99 Cornell Law Review Online (2013). 

"The Partisan Foundations of Judicial Campaign Finance, with Michael Kang," 86 Southern California Law Review (forthcoming, 2014).

"Products Liability and Economic Activity: An Empirical Analysis of Tort Reform’s Impact on Businesses, Employment, and Production," 66 Vanderbilt Law Review 257 (2013).

"The Fox Guarding the Henhouse: The Regulation of Pharmacy Benefit Managers by a Market Adversary," in Northwestern Journal of Law and Social Policy (2013).

"Ideal versus Reality in Third-Party Litigation Financing," 8 Journal of Law, Economics & Policy  593 (2012).

"Lawyers, Ignorance, and the Dominance of Delaware Corporate Law," 2 Harvard Business Law Review 123 (2012) (with William Carney and George Shepherd).

"The Partisan Price of Justice: An Empirical Analysis of Campaign Contributions and Judicial Decisions," 86 New York University Law Review 69 (2011) (with Michael Kang).

"Measuring Maximizing Judges: Empirical Legal Studies, Public Choice Theory, and Judicial Behavior," 2011 University of Illinois Law Review 101 (2011).

Book Chapters

"Law and Economics," in The International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences (James Wright ed., 2013) (with Paul H. Rubin)

"Public Choice and the Law," in The Elgar Companion to Public Choice (Michael Reksulak, Lauralliam F. Shughart II eds., forthcoming 2013) (with Paul H. Rubin).

"Ideal versus Reality in Third-Party Litigation Financing," 8 Journal of Law, Economics & Policy  593 (2012).

Congressional Testimony

  • Testimony on Crime and Deterrence: Hearing on H.R. 2934, The Terrorist Penalties Enhancement Act of 2003. Before the House Judiciary Committee; Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, 108th Cong. (2004).

Select Presentations

  • University of Texas School of Law, Center for Law, Business, and Economics (2012)
  • The Partisan Foundations of Judicial Campaign Finance ETH Zurich, the University of Zurich, the University of St. Gallen and the University of Lucerne (Joint workshop), Workshop & Lecture Series in Law & Economics, Zurich, Switzerland (2012)
  • Products Liability and Economic Activity Partisan Differences: How and Why Democratic and Republican Judges Differ in Party Loyalty George Mason School of Law, Law & Economics Colloquium (2012)
  • Canadian Law & Economics Association Annual Meetings, Toronto, CA (2012)
  • The Partisan Foundations of Judicial Campaign Finance American Law & Economics Association Annual Meetings, Palo Alto, CA (2012)