Academics & Faculty

UCLA Professor Mark Greenberg Wins the Fred Berger Memorial Prize for Best Paper on the Philosophy of Law


Mark Greenberg, UCLA acting professor of law and assistantprofessor of philosophy, was recently selected as the winner of the 2007 FredBerger Memorial Prize in Philosophy of Law for his 2004 article "How Facts MakeLaw," published in the journal Legal Theory.

The Berger Memorial Prize, presented every two years for anoutstanding published article on the philosophy of law, was established by the AmericanPhilosophical Association (APA) in memory of philosophy professor Fred Bergerof the University of California, Davis.The winning selection is made by the APA's Committeeon Philosophy and Law, which this year considered articles written in 2004 and2005.

Greenberg will be honored by the committee at a specialsession for the Berger Prize at the APA Pacific meeting in San Francisco, April 4–8.

In his award-winning article, Greenberg offers a newargument against the legal positivist view that non-normative social facts canthemselves determine the content of the law. He suggests that the nature of thedetermination relation in law is what he calls "rational determination" — thatis, the way in which statutes, cases and other grounds of law affect thecontent of the law must be rationally intelligible. He then argues from thisclaim to the conclusion that normative facts must play a role in determiningthe content of the law.

After its initial publication in Legal Theory, Greenberg'sarticle was reprinted in "ExploringLaw's Empire" (2006), a collection of essays by legal theorists andphilosophers, and"Problemas Contemporneos dela Filosofia del Derecho" (2005), another collection of legal essays,published in Mexico.The article will also be reprinted in the journal Social, Political, and Legal Philosophy and in the journal Problema.

Greenberg recently published another article, "Hartian Positivism and Normative Facts: How Facts Make LawII," which further develops the arguments made in his Berger Prize–winningpiece. This article also was included in the collection "Exploring Law's Empire."

In winning the Berger Memorial Prize, Greenberg joins twoprevious winners from the UCLA School of Law. Professor SeanaShiffrin, who holds a joint appointment with UCLA'sphilosophy department, won the award in 2003 for her 2000 article "Paternalism,Unconscionability Doctrine, and Accommodation" in Philosophy and Public Affairs, andprofessor Stephen Munzer won in 1999 for "Ellickson on 'Chronic Misconduct' in Urban Spaces: OfPanhandlers, Bench Squatters, and Day Laborers," published in the Harvard CivilRights–Civil Liberties Law Review in 1997.

In addition to the Berger Memorial Prize, Greenberg washonored for his scholarship in spring 2006, when his article "The Prism of Rules" was selected asthe best paper on the philosophy of law by the Stanford-Yale Junior FacultyForum.

Greenberg received his bachelor's degree from Johns HopkinsUniversity and his J.D. from Boalt Hall law school at the Universityof California, Berkeley. He served as law clerk to RuthBader Ginsburg on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of ColumbiaCircuit and was awarded a Marshall Scholarship to study at Oxford University,where he earned a B.Phil. and D.Phil. and was a junior research fellow.

From 2000 to 2004, Greenberg was a faculty member of thephilosophy department at Princeton University, where hetaught philosophy of mind, philosophy of law, and ethics. He has also been aFulbright Scholar at the University ofStockholm and a research fellow at theResearch School of Social Sciences of the Australian National University.

Before teaching at Princeton,Greenberg served as deputy assistant attorney general in the U.S. Department ofJustice. His work focused on criminal law and policy, constitutional law(especially equal protection and First Amendment issues), and appellatelitigation. He also worked as a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney'soffices for the Eastern District of Virginia and the Western District ofPennsylvania.

About UCLA Schoolof Law

Founded in 1949, UCLA School of Lawis the youngest major law school in the nation and has established a traditionof innovation in its approach to teaching, research and scholarship. Withapproximately 100 faculty and 970 students, the school pioneered clinicalteaching, is a leader in interdisciplinary research and training, and is at theforefront of efforts to link research to its effects on society and the legalprofession.



Media Contact