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Peter L. Strauss

  • Betts emeritus professor of law
  • Emeritiert
Fields of study
  • Constitutional law, regulation and public order
areas of expertise

Administrative law
Legal Methods
The regulatory and administrative state

Peter L. Strauss is Betts Professor Emeritus of Law at Columbia Law School. He joined the faculty in 1971, was twice vice dean and on July 1, 2017, he retired. He has long taught administrative law, legal method and legislation; as an emeritus lecturer for legal methodology I and the compulsory elective subject law and regulation and recently also administrative law for advanced learners.

He received his LL.B. from Yale Law School in 1964 and his A.B. 1961 from Harvard College. Prior to entering law school, he worked for David L. Bazelon and William J. Brennan in Washington, D.C .; spent two years teaching criminal law at the National University of Ethiopia; and three years as an attorney in the Office of the Solicitor General, briefing and submitting cases to the US Supreme Court. From 1975 to 1977, Strauss was the first General Counsel of Columbia’s United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission on leave.

school of professional studies

In 1987, the American Bar Association's Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice Division presented Strauss with the Third Award for Outstanding Administrative Law Scholarships. From 1992 to 1993 he was chairman of the section. He acted as a rapporteur for the regulations in the context of his APA and administrative law projects of the European Union and was a member of the e-rule-making task force. In 2008 the American Constitution Society awarded him the first Richard Cudahy Prize for his essay Overseer or 'The Decider'? The President for Administrative Law.

Known for his writings introducing foreign attorneys to American public law, Strauss has been a guest at the law schools of Addis Ababa University, the University of Buenos Aires, the European University Institute, Harvard University, Hong Kong University, La Sapienza ( Rome), Ludwig Maximilians University (Munich), the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public and International Law, McGill University, New York University, Sorbonne (Paris) and Tokyo University, and has given numerous lectures on American administrative law in the Abroad, including programs in Argentina, Australia, Belarus, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, England, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, Turkey and Venezuela. From 2008 to 2009 he was Fernand Braudel Senior Fellow at the European Law Institute and Parsons Fellow at the University of Sydney Law School.

who wrote somewhere over the rainbow

As a lifelong member of the American Law Institute, Strauss was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2010. He is also a long-time faculty member on the board of directors of the Law School's Public Interest Law Foundation.


  • Gellhorn and Byse Administrative Act, Cases and Commentaries , Foundation Press, (with teacher manuals and occasional supplements), 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th editions, 1979, 1986, 1995, 2003, 2011
  • Administrative jurisdiction in the United States , Carolina Academic Press, 1989, 2002, 2016
  • Legal methods: understanding and applying cases and statutes , Foundation press, 2005, 2008, 2014
  • The Law of Kings, an English translation , (Strauss, ed., A. Paulos trans., Fetha Negast), Addis Abeba, Haile Selassie I University Press, 1968, republished with additional material, Carolina Academic Press 2008
  • Citizens to Preserve Overton Park v. Volpe – of Politics and Law, Young Lawyers and the Highway Goliath in Administrative Law Stories, (Strauss ed.), 2006
  • Private Standards Organizations and Public Law, 22 William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal 497, 2013
  • 'Reference' is too confusing - let's call it 'Chevron Space' and 'Skidmore Weight', 112 Columbia Law Review 1143, 2012
  • Overseer or 'The Decider' - The President in Administrative Law, 75 George Washington Law Review 695, 2007, (Richard D. Cudahy Prize Essay, 2008)
  • Rulemaking in the Ages of Globalization and Information: What America Can Learn From Europe, and Vice Versa, 12 Columbia Journal of European Law 645, 2006
  • Courts or tribunals? Federal Courts and Common Law, 53 Alabama Law Review 891, 2002
  • The Regulatory Continuity, 41 Duke Law Journal, 1463, 1992
  • When the judge is not the primary officer in charge of reading: Agency Interpretation and the Problem of Legislative History, 66 Chicago-Kent Law Review 321, 1992
  • One Hundred and Fifty Cases a Year: Some Implications of the Supreme Court's Limited Resources for Judicial Review of Actions by the Agency, 87 Columbia Law Review 1093, 1987
  • The Place of Agency in Government: Separation of Powers and the Fourth Branch, 84 Columbia Law Review 573 1984, (ABA Administrative Law Section Award, 1985)
  • Review, Beyond the best Interests of the Child, (mit J. Strauss), 74 Columbia Law Review 996, 1974

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