Jennifer K. Robbennolt

Associate Dean for Research
Alice Curtis Campbell Professor of Law and
Professor of Psychology
Co-Director, Illinois Program on Law, Behavior and Social Science


Professor Jennifer Robbennolt is an expert in the areas of psychology and law, torts, and dispute resolution. Her research integrates psychology into the study of law and legal institutions, focusing primarily on legal decision-making and the use of empirical research methodology in law.

Professor Robbennolt is co-author of several books, including The Psychology of Tort Law; Psychology for Lawyers: Understanding the Human Factors in Negotiation, Litigation, and Decision Making; a textbook on Empirical Methods in Law (with Illinois colleagues Robert M. Lawless and Thomas S. Ulen); and the influential casebook, Dispute Resolution and Lawyers.

She has served as the chair of the AALS section on law and the social sciences and as the secretary of the American Psychology-Law Society. She currently serves as an Associate Editor of the Law and Society Review and as is on the editorial boards of Psychology, Public Policy, and Law and Law and Human Behavior.

Professor Robbennolt has twice been awarded the Wayne R. LaFave Award for Excellence in Faculty Scholarship and the Shook, Hardy, & Bacon Excellence in Research Award, and has received the Mangano Dispute Resolution Advancement Award (with Illinois colleague Verity Winship) and the Professional Article Prize awarded by the CPR International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution. Her teaching has been recognized by the American Psychology-Law Society’s award for Outstanding Teaching and Mentoring in the Field of Psychology and Law, the Illinois Campus Award for Excellence in Graduate and Professional Teaching, the John E. Cribbet Excellence in Teaching Award, the Blackwell Sanders Peper Martin Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award for outstanding teaching, and the Gold Chalk Award for dedication and service to the advancement of graduate student education.

A graduate with highest honors of the University of Nebraska College of Law, she also earned master’s and doctoral degrees in social psychology from the University of Nebraska. In 2016 she was presented with the inaugural Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Nebraska Law-Psychology Program. Before joining the faculty at the University of Illinois, Professor Robbennolt was associate dean for faculty research and development, associate professor, and senior fellow in the Center for the Study of Dispute Resolution at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law. She has also served as a research associate and lecturer at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and at Princeton University’s Department of Psychology and as a law clerk to the Honorable John M. Gerrard of the Nebraska Supreme Court.


MA, PhD University of Nebraska
JD University of Nebraska College of Law
BS Willamette University

Areas of Expertise

Legal Decision Making
Psychology and Law
Tort Law
Dispute Resolution


Dispute Resolution
Empirical Methods in Law

Selected Publications


The Psychology of Tort Law (NYU Press, 2016) (with Valerie P. Hans).

Psychology for Lawyers: Understanding the Human Factors in Negotiation, Litigation, and Decision Making (ABA Publishing, 2012) (with Jean Sternlight).

Empirical Methods in Law (Aspen, 2d ed., 2016) (with Robert M. Lawless & Thomas S. Ulen).

DISPUTE RESOLUTION & LAWYERS ABRIDGED EDITION (West, 5th ed. 2014) (with Leonard L. Riskin, Chris Guthrie, Richard Reuben & Nancy Welsh).

Articles and Essays

Designing Amends for Lawful Harm in Armed Conflict, 42 Yale J. Int’l L. __ (forthcoming 2016) (with Lesley Wexler).

Behavioral Ethics Meets Legal Ethics, 11 Ann. Rev. L. & Soc. Sci. 75 (2015).

Bankrupt Apologies, 10 J. Empirical Legal Stud. 771 (2013) (with Robert Lawless).

Behavioral Legal Ethics, 45 Ariz. St. L.J. 1107 (2013) (with Jean Sternlight).

The Effects of Negotiated and Delegated Apologies in Settlement Negotiation, 37 Law & Hum. Behav. 128 (2013).

Attorneys, Apologies, and Settlement Negotiation, 13 Harv. Negot. L. Rev. 349 (2008).

Apologies and Settlement Levers, 3 J. Empirical Legal Stud. 333 (2006).

Evaluating Juries by Comparison to Judges: A Benchmark for Judging? 32 Fla. St. L. Rev. 469 (2005).

Apologies and Legal Settlement: An Empirical Examination, 102 Mich. L. Rev. 460 (2003).

Symbolism and Incommensurability in Civil Sanctioning: Legal Decision-Makers as Goal Managers, 68 Brook. L. Rev. 1121 (2003) (with John M. Darley & Robert J. MacCoun).

Determining Punitive Damages: Empirical Insights and Implications for Reform, 50 Buffalo L. Rev. 103 (2002).

Evaluating Empirical Research Methods: Using Empirical Research in Law and Policy, 81 Neb. L. Rev. 777 (2002).

Punitive Damage Decision Making: The Decisions of Citizens and Trial Court Judges, 26 Law & Hum. Behav. 315 (2002).

Fractional Factorial Designs for Psycholegal Research, 20 Behav. Sci. & L. 5 (2002) (with Dennis P. Stolle, Marc Patry, & Steven D. Penrod).

Outcome Severity and Judgments of “Responsibility”: A Meta-Analytic Review, 30 J. Applied Soc. Psychol. 2575 (2000).

Assessing Pretrial Publicity Effects: Integrating Content Analytic Results, 24 Law & Hum. Behav. 317 (2000) (with Christina A. Studebaker, Maithilee K. Pathak-Sharma, & Steven D. Penrod).

Anchoring in the Courtroom: The Effects of Caps on Punitive Damages, 23 Law & Hum. Behav. 353 (1999) (with Christina A. Studebaker).


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