From Ivy to Olives Academic Symposium in Israel 2008
May 27–28, 2008
The Center for Israeli Legal Studies and the Anti-Defamation League teamed up recently to create an academic conference in Tel Aviv. The “From Ivy to Olives Academic Symposium in Israel” attracted 22 American academics, including eight Columbia Law School professors, to participate in a discussion on issues related to freedom of speech and corporate governance. Dean David Schizer gave the conference’s welcome address in Hebrew.
The two-day event was the brainchild of Professor Zohar Goshen, chairman of the Israel Securities Authority and professor of law at both Columbia Law School and Ono Academic College in Israel. Goshen’s extensive connections in Israel helped to attract Israeli lawyers, students from Ono Academic College and Hebrew University (where Goshen received his law degree), a former justice of the Israel Supreme Court, and the director general of Israel’s Ministry of Finance, among others. Goshen led the conference’s “Business Groups and Corporate Governance Standards” panel.
Professors George Fletcher and Kent Greenawalt participated in a panel titled “Liability for Speech?” Professors John C. Coffee and Harvey Goldschmid, and Senior Research Scholar and Lecturer-in-Law Melvin Eisenberg, discussed corporate governance on the “Governance and Enforcement” panel. Coffee summarized his recent article, “Law and the Market: The Impact of Enforcement,” which appeared in the University of Pennsylvania Law Review.
“In America, we usually learn lessons as a result of scandals, such as Enron and WorldCom,” said Eisenberg, who discussed the ethics provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. “That’s when you get reform in the U.S. The conference was a way to say, ‘You don’t have to do what we do. You don’t have to go through the same kind of trauma we did. Take the pieces of reform we implemented that you think fit into your market.’”
Professors Curtis Milhaupt and Katharina Pistor also participated in
the conference, sitting on a panel titled “Corporate Governance and Sovereign Wealth Funds.” Milhaupt discussed a Stanford Law Review article he co-wrote with Professor Ronald Gilson titled “Sovereign Wealth Funds and Corporate Governance.” Pistor expanded on the causes of the recent growth in sovereign wealth fund investments and presented her paper, “Global Network Finance: Reassessing Linkages between Sovereign Wealth Funds and Western Banks.”
Professor Goldschmid brought the conference to a close by presenting his paper on “Corporate Governance Reforms in the United States during the First Years of the 21st Century.” Goldschmid explained that the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the SEC’s efforts to implement and build on that act had dramatically improved U.S. law in terms of disclosure, corporate governance,
SEC enforcement, and the accounting profession itself.
Download the conference poster