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Two Michigan Ross Professors Honored by the Academy of Legal Studies in Business

Professors Jeremy Kress and Norm Bishara awarded for law scholarship

Norm Bishara, Professor of Business Law and Ethics, and Jeremy Kress, Assistant Professor of Business Law, received awards at the most recent national meeting of the Academy of Legal Studies in Business, an international association of business law faculty.

The Academy of Legal Studies in Business recently had its annual meeting. The goal of the event was to highlight excellence in research, teaching, and scholarship in the business law community. Selected by their peers, Norm Bishara and Jeremy Kress were both honored for their contributions to finance, employment, and sustainability law.

Bishara received the 2023 Jackson Lewis LLP Award for the Outstanding Employment Law Paper from the Academy of Legal in Business for his paper “Climate Change and a Just Transition to the Future of Work.” The paper, co-authored with Stephan Park, Associate Professor from the University of Connecticut, is forthcoming in the American Business Law Journal. The research explores the impact an emerging green economy, climate change, AI, and automation will have on workers and the corporate responsibility to the future of work.

“With the huge coming shifts in work due to climate change and the future of work issues, companies have an obligation to consider and act to assist workers in the transition and how to ensure decent work for all, even as the nature of work is changing so rapidly. We argue that failing to assist in a just transition for workers is an underappreciated source of business and reputational risk,” said Bishara on the impact of the research. “With the trends toward the greening of the economy and the ongoing increased disruptions from automation and artificial intelligence, it is imperative that business takes on a positive role and that there are policies in place to support that goal.”

In addition to winning the Outstanding Employment Law Paper award, the research was a finalist for the Holmes-Cardozo Best Conference Paper Award.

“It is very gratifying to receive this honor from my business law peers, and it reinforces the potential of this work to help guide the changes related to climate change and the future of work that are so challenging for companies and individual employees,” said Bishara.

Kress received two awards at the meeting. Firstly, he was honored with the prestigious Early Career Achievement Award. This award is given to a faculty member who has demonstrated exceptional promise and outstanding achievement pre-tenure. The deciding body factors excellence in research, teaching, and service into their decision.

“Ever since I joined Ross and began participating in ALSB events, I have looked up to previous winners of the Early Career Achievement Award as role models,” said Kress. “It's extremely rewarding to have my work recognized in this way. I feel very grateful to be part of an academic community that values my contributions.”

Kress also received the American Business Law Journal’s Excellence in Research Award for his Article, “Banking’s Climate Conundrum,” published last April in ABLJ. The paper explores the impact of the United States’ response to global warming on the U.S. banking system, particularly how the U.S. bank capital rules are not well designed to protect against climate-related risks.

“As the debate unfolded over climate-related financial risks in academic and policy circles, I kept thinking about how unique aspects of U.S. capital rules could perversely encourage carbon-intensive companies to borrow more from U.S. banks and intensify the U.S. banking system's exposure to climate risks,” said Kress. “I wrote the article to highlight this unusual weakness and to call on policymakers to implement reforms to better safeguard the financial system from the climate crisis.”

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