Prize in memory of Brenno Galli for the most promising young scholar’s paper presented at the SIDE-ISLE annual conference.

Brenno Galli (Lugano, 09.26.1910–Lugano, 08.20.1978)

  • President of the Swiss National Bank, 1959–1978
  • Member of the Cantonal Government of the Canton of Ticino, 1946-1959
  • Member of the Swiss National Council, 1959–1971

Source: Swiss National Bank. Further information (in French, German, and Italian): Dizionario Storico della Svizzera

 In order to encourage outstanding young scholars to develop their research in the field of Law and Economics, the “Fondazione Ricerca e Sviluppo of USI” (Università della Svizzera italiana), through the “Fondo Galli”, has reserved 1,000 Swiss Francs as the Brenno Galli Award for most promising paper presented by young scholars at the annual meeting of the Italian Society of Law and Economics (SIDE). The prize may be shared.

The Local Organizing Committee and the Advisory Board shall select the winner(s). Author who got a Ph.D. degree no longer than three years back and who presents his/her work at the SIDE Conference, is eligible to participate in the competition. 

The 2016 Prize in memory of Brenno Galli goes to

MR Suren Gomtsian (University of Leeds) for his paper Between the green pitch and the red tape: The private legal order of FIFA.

Motivation: The paper argues that private orderings may succeed in governing the behaviour of the involved actors by keeping them away from regular Courts. Essentially, the paper uses FIFA as a case study to make the point. According to the Author, FIFA, as a transnational private authority, offers what other public orderings could not: Harmonized institutions that apply across national borders and in many cases are better accustomed to the needs of the involved parties than their state-made alternatives, which often are based on one-size-fits-all approach and lack certainty of application. Although the interests of some other involved parties, less known players in particular, might have been better served by the application of formal state laws, the established equilibrium discourages deviation.

It is a very good paper, well written, well structured, very well documented. Moreover, the paper shows a great maturity of the Author. The paper can significantly contribute to the debate on private vs. public orderings throughout a detailed Law and Economics description of a particular private ordering, i.e. FIFA, and, therefore, we think is of interest to a wide audience.

Hence, we believe that it provides a substantial contribution and is well-qualified for the award.

Commitee: Alain Marciano (Université de Montpellier), John Szmer (University of North Carolina at Charlotte) and Massimiliano Vatiero (Università della Svizzera italiana). 

The 2015 Prize in memory of Brenno Galli goes to

MR Sven Hoeppner (Ghent University Law School) and MS Laura Lyhs (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods) for their paper Effects of Standard Vagueness: Legal Uncertainty in the Lab.

Motivation: The paper tests in a laboratory experiment the (often conflicting!) perspectives on legal uncertainty of traditional legal scholarship and of research in law and economics. The analysis is proficiently executed and explained, and the paper impacts various legal areas.

MR Hoeppner and MS Lyhs find a U-shaped relationship between increases in legal uncertainty and average chosen activity levels. Low levels of legal uncertainty on average induce over-compliance. After a threshold, further increasing legal uncertainty reduces average over-compliance and seems to promote under-compliance. An intriguing and unexplored result is provided: with increasing vagueness individual behaviour becomes more erratic, i.e. the law looses its coordination function, though no effect of uncertainty may emerge on average. Lastly, the section on examples and applications where the paper results may matter is interesting and well organized. Overall, the paper is very professional and technically competent.

Hence, we believe that it provides a substantial contribution and is well-qualified for the award.

Commitee: Fernando Gómez (Universitat Pompeu Fabra), Antonio Acconcia Università degli Studi di Napoli “Federico II”), and Massimiliano Vatiero (Università della Svizzera italiana)

The 2014 Prize in memory of Brenno Galli was divided equally between

MR HENRI DE BELSUNCE (Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition) for his paper Do more patents mean less entry? (Patenting strategies in cumulative innovation under the threat of litigation).

Motivation: The paper investigates the role of treble damages in discouraging raising rivals’ costs strategy of incumbent by means of excessive patenting. De Belsunce’s paper is technically first-rate.

A certain limitation is the underlying comparative statics (and not a dynamic model), but the paper is coherent and rich for that kind of analysis. It combines strong investigation with a clearly defined policy case (pros and cons of treble damages). The paper proves an astonishing maturity of the Author.

Hence, we believe that this paper provides a substantial contribution and qualities for the award.

MR ALESSANDRO MELCARNE (University of Torino & Collegio Carlo Alberto)  for his paper To review or not to review, that is the question! The dilemma of a self-interested judge.

Melcarne’s paper is not a mere extension of the literature, but identifies a problem “out there”, namely the behavior of members of the Italian Constitutional Court (ICC), and analyzes such a behavior theoretically and practically. The paper identifies the interest in post-ICC-appointments as an important driver of judicial behavior.

Results are unexpected and well-illustrated. The paper offers fascinating and very relevant policy implications concerning incentives of judges. The Author shows an outstanding maturity.

Hence, we believe that it provides a substantial contribution and qualities for the award.

Commitee: Peter Lewisch  (Universität Wien), Angelo Castaldo (“Sapienza” University, Rome), and Massimiliano Vatiero (Università della Svizzera italiana)

The 2013 Prize in memory of Brenno Galli was divided equally between

  1. MARCO FABBRI (University of Bologna) for his paper Shaping Tax Norms Through Lotteries.

Motivation: The paper analyses tax compliance based on rewards rather than on punishment. The paper is based on a clear, relevant and well posed research question (why – and under what conditions – lottery based rewards against tax evasion were successful).

The analysis is based on a sound theoretical methodology which makes use of various strands of relevant literature (e.g., insights of prospect theory). It provides interesting and relevant policy implications (concerning the conditions under which the policy is optimal).

Hence we believe that it provides a substantial contribution and qualifies for the award.

  1. NICOLAE STEF (University of Strasbourg, LaRGE) for his paper Voting Rules in Bankruptcy Law.

Motivation: The paper analyses the mechanics of voting rules in bankruptcy. It is based on a clear, relevant and well posed research question (how to evaluate the severity of voting rules in bankruptcy and how do they affect recovery rates).

The analysis is based on the definition of a conceptual and empirical framework and the collection of a new dataset on voting rules for 90 countries. It provides interesting and relevant policy implications (concerning the impact of different voting rules on the possibility of recovery in bankruptcy).

Hence we believe that it provides a substantial contribution and qualifies for the award.

Commitee: Hans-Bernd Schäfer (Bucerius Law School), Magda Bianco (Bank of Italy), and Massimiliano Vatiero 

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