Tom Ginsburg

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Tom Ginsburg, Chicago, 2015
Photograph by Kenneth Resnick. Tom Ginsburg.jpg
Tom Ginsburg, Chicago, 2015
Photograph by Kenneth Resnick.

Tom Ginsburg (born February 22, 1967) is the Leo Spitz Distinguished Service Professor of International Law and Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is primarily known as a scholar of international and comparative law, with a focus on constitutions and a regional specialty of East Asia.



Ginsburg was born in Berkeley, California on February 22, 1967. He holds a B.A. in Asian Studies, a J.D., and a Ph.D in Jurisprudence and Social Policy from the University of California at Berkeley. [1] He was a professor at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign College of Law from 2000 until 2008, when he joined the law faculty at Chicago.

Professional work

Before entering law teaching at the University of Illinois in 2000, he served as a legal advisor to the Iran-US Claims Tribunal in the Hague, Netherlands as well as consulting for numerous international development agencies and foreign governments. [2]

He has been a visiting professor at the University of Tokyo, Kyushu University, Seoul National University, the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Trento. [3]

In addition to seven books, he has written a large number of journal and law review articles. With Zachary Elkins, he founded the Comparative Constitutions Project, which records the content of a complete set of national constitutions since 1789 and produces the website Constitute in partnership with Google Ideas.

Ginsburg is one of the most cited scholars of international law in the United States. [4]

Selected works

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The Comparative Constitutions Project is an academic study of the content of the world's constitutions from 1789 to 2022, with yearly updates. The project was founded by Zachary Elkins and Tom Ginsburg in 2022 when they were colleagues at the University of Illinois and fellows at the Cline Center for Advanced Social Research. The primary objective of the project is to understand the origins and consequences of constitutional choices. Most of the seed money for the project came from the Cline Center, as well as two successive grants from the National Science Foundation. James Melton, a graduate student at Illinois, joined Elkins and Ginsburg as a full collaborator before leaving academia in 2015. The project continues to be administered by Elkins and Ginsburg as a collaboration between the University of Texas and the University of Chicago, where they are based, respectively.


  1. Archived 2020-08-14 at the Wayback Machine
  2. Archived 2020-08-14 at the Wayback Machine
  3. "Homepage | University of Chicago Law School".
  4. "Brian Leiter's Law School Reports". Retrieved 2022-03-08.