Professor William Birdthistle, guest-blogging about the World Cup, the law of soccer, and law and sports more generally

I’m delighted to say that Professor William Birdthistle, who teaches at Chicago-Kent College of Law, will be joining us this week. His main fields are business organizations and securities regulation, but his topic this week will be sports and law, specifically soccer and the internal law and law enforcement of soccer.

Birdthistle spent much of his life immersed in soccer cultures — he is Irish and, before coming to the United States for college, spent much of his life growing up in Libya (eight years) and Malaysia (nine years). This led him to think about how the World Cup, soccer more generally, and sports still more generally are affected by how various rules are enforced within each sport.

He blogged about these subjects for us in 2007, and I’m glad to have him here again to blog about this year’s World Cup and the law-of-sports issues that surround it (and sports generally). His work is part of a growing movement to think about law in contexts other than government-enforced rules — of recognizing that rules (of various degrees of precision), rulemaking and rule enforcement are pervasive aspects of human endeavor that influence human behavior in often unintended ways. I much look forward to his posts!

Eugene Volokh teaches free speech law, religious freedom law, church-state relations law, a First Amendment Amicus Brief Clinic, and tort law, at UCLA School of Law, where he has also often taught copyright law, criminal law, and a seminar on firearms regulation policy.

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