Lost in Translation: The Economic Analysis of Law in the United States and Europe

By: ,

In this Essay, we examine the reasons why the economic analysis of law has not flourished in European countries as it has in the United States. In particular, we focus on three European countries–the United Kingdom, Germany, and France. We argue that differences in culture, the legal system, and the academy have led to differing degrees of success of the law and economics movement in each country. We speculate that, although there is currently less interest in the economic analysis of the law in Europe than in the United States, European interest could dramatically increase if scholars adopt more communitarian analyses aimed at analyzing legislative polices rather than judicial decisions.