Mitchell Hamline professors Allen Blair and David Larson have been chosen to receive the 2018-19 John H. Faricy Jr. Professorship for Empirical Research in the Law.
The professorship is rotated annually among the school’s faculty members. It was created by John H. Faricy Jr. ’82 (WMCL), founder of Minneapolis-based Faricy Law, to provide professors with resources to research and test theories and legal practices using quantitative techniques.
Blair, a senior fellow in the Dispute Resolution Institute and the Robins Kaplan Distinguished Professor of Litigation Skills and International Dispute Resolution, will investigate how smart contracts and related technologies are incorporated into the structure of complex contracts—now and in the future. His work will involve the collection of data around existing commercial contracts and the coding and analysis of that data.
“I am grateful for the opportunities provided by the John H. Faricy Professorship,” Blair said. “I have become increasingly focused on investigating the ways that technology can be harnessed to provide greater access to justice. This professorship will provide me
with support that I need to ground my work and thinking in quality empirical analysis and data.”
Larson, a senior fellow in the Dispute Resolution Institute, will research online dispute resolution, or ODR, as a part of his professorship.
Larson, who has been involved with online dispute resolution for many years, plans to study how parties use the online system to resolve disputes, its effectiveness, and how it can be improved.
“The Faricy Chair can be awarded for empirical research in any field,” Larson said. “The fact that it has been awarded for an online dispute resolution proposal represents significant institutional recognition of the growing importance of ODR.”
Larson plans to present his research findings at professional conferences and a symposium.
John Faricy Jr. is one of a long line of family members who graduated from Mitchell Hamline legacy schools, including both of his grandfathers. His grandfather Roland J. Faricy ’22 (SPCL) was co-founder of the noted St. Paul law firm Faricy, Burger, Moore, Costello & Hart, and hired Warren E. Burger ’31 (SPCL), who went on to serve as chief justice of the United States from 1969-1986.