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Jim regularly provides antitrust counselling on relationships with competitors, benchmarking and other forms of information exchange, distribution issues, and heath care.
Jim is listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2008 and Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, and is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. He is chair of the American Bar Association Section of Antitrust Law. He previously served the antitrust section as Section delegate, publications officer, and council member, and was a member of its International Cartel Task Force. Jim is a regular lecturer and author on antitrust and competition issues. He is a member of the Ohio bar.
For antitrust and competition lawyers, 2008 has been a year full of interesting and significant developments. It is almost certain that 2009 will prove just as interesting, as the US sees a change in presidential administrations and other jurisdictions implement significant changes in their antitrust laws. As the most active professional organisation serving antitrust and competition lawyers around the globe, the American Bar Association Section of Antitrust Law seeks to respond to these developments through the full range of activities and services it provides: publications, programming, advocacy, education, and outreach.
Transitions in antitrust enforcement, both in the US and internationally, will occupy much of the Section's attention in the coming year. The Section has already begun the preparation of a Transition Report, designed to give the new administration neutral and well-grounded advice concerning past and future enforcement priorities. As the priorities of a new administration become clear, the Section looks forward to engaging in constructive discussion and debate as to the benefits and consequences of changes in enforcement policy and priorities. Likewise, as competition law and enforcement continues to evolve and grow in other jurisdictions, the Section will continue to provide its insights into proposed changes in policy or enforcement around the world.
The Antitrust Section is responding to the changing face of competition law with its programming and publications activities for the coming year. The Section's Masters Course IV will be held on 25 to 28 September 2008. This program is a unique educational programme for attorneys who have devoted a substantial amount of time to antitrust issues over the course of three to 10 years, and is designed to bring the seasoned antitrust attorney to the next level of proficiency. Advanced antitrust theory will be presented in plenary sessions, and a number of senior representatives from the US antitrust agencies will offer their views on policy and procedure at the agencies. This will be followed by the Annual Fall Forum Program in Washington, DC, on 13 and 14 November 2008, a week after the US presidential election, which will be the first word on how the results of that election will impact US antitrust enforcement. The Fall Forum will feature a keynote addresses by Federal Trade Commission Chairman William Kovacic and Assistant Attorney General Thomas Barnett, and presentations by many other US enforcers.
The first programme to be offered in 2009 will be the Section's Intellectual Property and Antitrust Program, to be held on 5 to 6 February 2009 in Berkley, in co-sponsorship with the University of California at Berkley.
Next on the calendar is the 2009 Spring Meeting to be held in Washington, DC, from 25 to 27 March. The Spring Meeting has become one of the 'must attend' events of the annual competition law calendar, with approximately 2,200 attorneys and economists attending the 2008 Spring Meeting. (This number included over 300 attorneys and economists from more than 40 countries outside the US - including numerous government enforcement officials - establishing the truly international character of the gathering.) The Spring Meeting will continue to offer multiple programming 'tracks' in order to highlight programming of particular interest to litigators and international practitioners. The Section also will again present a two day Consumer Protection Conference at Georgetown University, on 18 to 19 June, 2009.
The Antitrust Section also is devoting considerable resources to its publication activities. 2008 marked the publication of Issues in Competition Law and Policy, a three-volume collection of essays covering the jurisprudential, substantive, and methodological issues confronting modern competition law and policy. In addition, it published a number of handbooks for practitioners on topics as varied as distribution and franchising to health care to data security.
The Section also is continuing to involve a large number of its members in the drafting and editorial process of three other significant publications: the first edition of Consumer Protection Law Developments (which is envisioned as a companion to ALD that will focus on key consumer protection issues, including privacy); a second edition of Competition Laws Outside the United States; and a fourth edition of State Antitrust Practice and Statutes.
The Antitrust Law Journal, the Section's peer-reviewed journal of legal and economic articles, continues to be cited in more US antitrust judicial opinions than any other law journal. It will continue to publish articles addressing the most complex and challenging issues in the field of competition law.
Antitrust Magazine, which is published three times a year, will continue to offer practical analyses of court decisions and government enforcement actions. The Antitrust Source, the Section's online magazine, offers timely analyses and commentary on recent developments, as well as presenting book reviews, commentary on recent scholarship, and interviews with government enforcement officials and other competition leaders.
The Section's oral history task force, which is becoming a permanent committee, has done an amazing job of preserving the recollections of those who have made significant contributions to antitrust enforcement and the development of antitrust doctrine. The task force members identify such individuals and arrange for videotaped interviews with these individuals to capture their insights and perspectives for the benefit of future generations of antitrust scholars. A number of these 'oral histories' has been posted on the Section's website, and additional interviews will be conducted and made available over the coming year. In addition, this committee will begin working to develop materials to educated the general public regarding the benefits of competition and antitrust enforcement to the US and global economies.
The Antitrust Section also continues to devote considerable attention and resources to the consumer protection field. Two committees, Consumer Protection and Privacy and Information Security, focus on recent developments in this area and seek to provide the resources necessary for Section members to deal with this rapidly changing area of law. The Section also continues to offer fellowships to law students in order to commit them to work in state attorneys general offices during the summer on consumer protection issues. These fellowships, named in honour of former FTC Chairman Janet Steiger, last year permitted over 20 law students to be exposed to consumer protection issues and to consider potential careers in this area.
The Antitrust Section will continue to seek to improve its use of technology and to take full advantage of new methods to deliver its substantive content to antitrust practitioners throughout the world. Teleseminars have become an important means of delivering Continuing Legal Education (CLE) training, and electronic 'brown bag lunches' offered by the Section's committees provide Section members with the ability to participate regardless of their location.
Moreover, since these 'brown bags' are available as audio downloads from the Section's web page, they can be accessed at any time.
Working with the ABA Young Lawyers Division (YLD), the Antitrust Section has developed an 'Antitrust Basics' programme, introducing new lawyers interested in antitrust to the key legal and economic concepts underlying this practice. The content of that program continues to grow, and gives value resources for the development of practical skills to further the career development of attorneys new to the antitrust practice.
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The coming year should be another active year for antitrust and competition lawyers. The 2008 presidential election in the United States is certain to shape antitrust policy going forward. New competition laws in China and India, and changes and refinements to these laws in many other jurisdictions, are likely to have significant long-term impacts on the way we view and apply competition law principles. The ABA Antitrust Section will continue to be actively engaged in this process as it seeks to assist its members and the larger international antitrust and competition law community in their practices while promoting the adoption and implementation of sound competition policy worldwide.