Civil Law Expert to Discuss the Privatization of Justice

Renowned civil law professor Peter L. Murray will present the second lecture in the College of Law’s 13th Annual Speaker Series. “The Privatization of Civil Justice” will address the growing trend of resolving civil disputes by private entrepreneurial decision makers or facilitators, including private arbitrators and mediators under pre-dispute clauses. Murray acknowledges that public judges render fewer and fewer decisions today, and he believes a likely consequence of this change is the erosion of decisional law and of the image of justice. He asks, “Is it time to consider putting the brakes on the headlong privatization of justice?”

Murray’s lecture will be held Monday, Oct. 29, 2007, at 4 p.m. in Room 217 of the Truman Wesley Collins Legal Center, which houses the College of Law. The center is located at 245 Winter St. SE in Salem. A reception will immediately follow the lecture. This event is free and open to the public.

Murray Biography
Peter L. Murray is the Edward R. Johnston Lecturer on Law and the Robert Braucher Visiting Professor of Law from Practice at Harvard Law School. His research interests include trial lawyer ethics and techniques, visual and demonstrative aids in evidence, comparative study of trial practice in common and civil law systems in the United States and Germany, and computers and law practice. Murray is the author of Basic Trial Advocacy and co-author of Problems, Cases & Materials on Evidence and German Civil Justice, a comparative description and analysis of the German legal system.

Throughout the years, Murray has worked extensively in comparative law, with particular emphasis on civil procedure in Germany and Europe. He regularly returns to Germany, Switzerland and Austria to lecture and participate in academic meetings, arbitrations and moot courts. His academic appointments have included serving as a visiting associate professor of law at the University of Maine School of Law and a Fulbright visiting professor at the University of Freiburg in Germany. Murray earned his undergraduate degree and law degree from Harvard University. He is a member of the American Law Institute.