Robert C. Berring, 1949–

Hall of Fame Induction: 2014

Significant AALL Service

Robert Berring

  • Chair, Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals Committee, 1980–82
  • AALL Vice President/President-Elect, 1984–85
  • AALL President, 1985–86
  • AALL Immediate Past President, 1986–87
  • Chair, Special Committee on Law Librarian Compensation, 2001–02

Professional Honors & Awards

  • Named to Walter Perry Johnson Chair in Law, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, 1995
  • Sandy Peterson Memorial Lecturer, Law Librarians Society of Washington, DC, 1998
  • Koch Endowed Lecture, University of Washington, 1999
  • Frederick Charles Hicks Award for Outstanding Contributions to Academic Law Librarianship, 2003
  • Boalt Hall Law School Citation Award, 2004
  • Symposium, “Legal Information and the Development of American Law: Further Thinking About the Thoughts of Robert C. Berring,” Berkeley, California, October 21, 2006 [papers published in Law Library Journal 99 (2007): 191–424]
  • Centennial Award for Most Influential Author of the Past Fifty Years, Academic Law Libraries Special Interest Section, 2006
  • Marian Gould Gallagher Distinguished Service Award, 2014
  • AALL Hall of Fame, Inductee, 2014

Selected Publications by Inductee*

  • “Acquisitions and Selection of Primary and Secondary Legal Materials for Social Science Collections,” Behavioral & Social Sciences Librarian 1 (Winter 1979): 127–35. (With Roy M. Mersky & Michael Richmond.)
  • “Corpus Juris Secundum,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 1, no. 1 (1981): 67–82. (With Valerie Wedin.)
  • “Looseleaf Services: A Subject Bibliography,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 1, no. 4 (1981): 51–71. (With Valerie Wedin.)
  • How to Find the Law. 8th ed. American Casebook Series. St. Paul, Minn.: West Pub. Co., 1983. 790p. (With Morris L. Cohen.)
  • Finding the Law: An Abridged Edition of “How to Find the Law, 8th Ed.” American Casebook Series. St. Paul, Minn.: West Pub. Co., 1984. 556p. (With Morris L. Cohen.)
  • “How to Be a Great Reference Librarian,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 4 (Spring 1984): 17–37.
  • “Full-Text Databases and Legal Research: Backing Into the Future,” High Technology Law Journal 1 (1986): 27–60.
  • “Dyspeptic Ramblings of a Retiring Past President,” Law Library Journal 79 (1987): 345–50.
  • “Legal Research and Legal Concepts: Where Form Molds Substance,” California Law Review 75 (1987): 15–27.
  • Practical Approaches to Legal Research. New York: Haworth Press, 1988. 150p. (With Kent C. Olson).
  • How to Find the Law. 9th ed. American Casebook Series. St. Paul, Minn.: West Pub. Co., 1989. 716p. (With Morris Cohen & Kent C. Olson.)
  • “Legal Research: Should Students Learn It or Wing It?” Law Library Journal 81 (1989): 431–49. (With Kathleen Vanden Heuvel.)
  • Winning Research Skills. St. Paul, Minn.: West Pub. Co., 1991. 147p. (With Nancy P. Johnson & Thomas A. Woxland.) [also co-authored 2d–5th editions, 1993–2006]
  • “The Electronic Law Library: The Electronic Future of Law Libraries,” Law Librarian 24 (1993): 168–73.
  • “Collapse of the Structure of the Legal Research Universe: The Imperative of Digital Information,” Washington Law Review 69 (1994): 9–34.
  • Review of In Search of Equality: The Chinese Struggle Against Discrimination in Nineteenth-Century America, by Charles J. Mcclain, Asian Law Review 2 (1995): 87–103.
  • “Future Librarians.” In Future Libraries, edited by R. Howard Bloch & Carla Hesse, 94–115. Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press, 1995.
  • “On Not Throwing out the Baby: Planning the Future of Legal Information,” California Law Review 83 (1995): 615–35.
  • “Plenary Session: The Shifting Universe of Legal Information.” In The National Conference on Legal Information Issues: Selected Essays, edited by Timothy L. Coggins, 21–32. AALL Publication Series, No. 51. Littleton, Colo.: Fred B. Rothman & Co., 1996.
  • “Reflections on Mentors.” In Law Librarianship: Historical Perspectives, edited by Laura N. Gasaway and Michael C. Chiorazzi, 185–202. AALL Publication Series, No. 52. Littleton, Colo.: Fred B. Rothman & Co., 1996.
  • “Thoughts on the Future: A Steroid-Enhanced Editorial,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 15, no. 3/4 (1996): 1–14.
  • “Universal Citation Systems: Will Tinkering with the Future Be the End of Reliable, Standardized Opinions,” ABA Journal 82 (July 1996): 74.
  • “Farewell to All That,” Loyola of Los Angeles International and Comparative Law Journal 19 (1997): 431–47.
  • “Chaos, Cyberspace and Tradition: Legal Information Transmogrified,” Berkeley Technology Law Journal 12 (1997): 189–212.
  • “Partners and Alliances in Digital Information,” Collection Management 22, no. 3–4 (1998): 9–20.
  • “Legal Information and the Search for Cognitive Authority,” California Law Review 88 (2000): 1673–1708.
  • “Legal Research and the World of Thinkable Thoughts,” Journal of Appellate Practice and Process 2 (2000): 305–18.
  • “Chinese Law, Trade and the New Century,” Northwestern Journal of International Law & Business 20 (2000): 425–45.
  • Legal Research Survival Manual. St. Paul, Minn.: West Group, 2002. 93p. (With Elizabeth A. Edinger.)
  • “Affirmative Action in Perspective,” Review of Silence at Boalt Hall: The Dismantling of Affirmative Action, by Andrea Guerrero, California Law Review 91 (2003): 1125–37.
  • “Mike Jacobstein: Truly a Giant,” Law Library Journal 97 (2005): 633–36.
  • “Deconstructing the Law Library: The Wisdom of Meredith Willson,” Minnesota Law Review 89 (2005): 1381–1406.
  • “A Brief History of Law Librarianship.” In Law Librarianship in the Twenty-First Century, edited by Roy Balleste, Sonia Luna-Lamas & Lisa Smith-Butler, 1–13. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press, 2007.
  • “The Heart of Legal Information: The Crumbling Infrastructure of Legal Research.” In Legal Information and the Development of American Law, edited by Richard A. Danner and Frank G. Houdek, 296–309. St. Paul, Minn.: Thomson/West, 2007.
  • International Legal Research in a Nutshell. St. Paul: Thomson/West, 2008. 313p. (With Marci B. Hoffman.)
  • “Suggestions for American Judges: Ten Books that Merit Reading,” Journal of Appellate Practice and Process 10 (2009): 347–56.
  • “Speculations on Chinese Law and Society in Modern China: An Essay.” In Interpretation of Law in China—Roots and Perspectives, edited by Michal Tomásek and Guido Muhlemann, 21–41. Prague: Charles University in Prague, Karolinum Press, 2011.
  • “Title 51 of the U.S. Code and Why It Matters,” Green Bag 2d 14 (2011): 251–56.
  • “The Great Law Books—An Introduction to Chapter One,” Journal of Law 1 (2011): 315–16.
  • “A Famous Book About Famous Books—Men and Books Famous in the Law, by Frederick Hicks,” Journal of Law 2 (2012): 267–70.
  • “The End of Scholarly Bibliography: Reconceptualizing Law Librarianship,” Law Library Journal 104 (2012): 69–82.
  • “The Ultimate Oldie but Goodie: William Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Law of England,” Journal of Law 4 (2014): 189–93.
  • “What A Long, Strange Trip It’s Been,” Journal of the Legal Writing Institute 20 (2015): 9–11. “A Brief History of Law Librarianship.” In Law Librarianship in the Twenty-First Century, 2nd ed., Scarecrow Press, 2014.
  • *For a complete list through its date of publication, see Frank G. Houdek, “From the Reference Desk to River City: A Bibliography of the Writings of Robert C. Berring,” Law Library Journal 99 (2007): 413–23.

Selected Publications About Inductee

  • “Robert C. Berring,” in Reflections on Law Librarianship: A Collection of Interviews, edited by Marjorie A. Garson et al., 1–15. Littleton, Colo.: Fred B. Rothman & Co., 1988.
  • “Robert C. Berring,” in Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library: An Oral History, edited by Mary Ann Andersen, 517. Seattle: University of Washington School of Law, 1988.
  • Robert C. Berring, “Conventional Wisdom,” in Frank G. Houdek, “Stories of ‘My First Annual Meeting,’” Law Library Journal 88 (1996): 9, 14–15.
  • Robert C. Berring, “Books,” in Frank G. Houdek, “What Law Librarians Collect,” Law Library Journal 91 (1999): 577, 586.
  • Frank G. Houdek, “Robert C. Berring,” in “AALL History Through the Eyes of its Presidents,” Law Library Journal (2006): 299, 319–20.
  • Frank G. Houdek, “From the Reference Desk to River City: A Bibliography of the Writings of Robert C. Berring,” Law Library Journal 99 (2007): 413–23.
  • Robert C. Berring, “The Education of a Twentieth-Century Law Librarian,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 32 (Jan.-June 2013): 1–12.
  • Robert C. Berring Interview. In An Oral History of Law Librarianship, interviewed by Patrick E. Kehoe, July 2, 2013, videorecording. Spinelli’s Law Library Reference Shelf, HeinOnline.
  • Robert C. Berring, “Part II. 1975–78: Days at the Mother Library,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 33 (2014): 191–202.
  • Heidi Frostestad Kuehl, “Celebrating Three of AALL’s Most Accomplished: The Association Presents Its Most Prestigious Award to Berring, Johnston, and Nicholson,” AALL Spectrum 18 (June 2014): 30–31.
  • Robert C. Berring, “The Cambridge Years,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 34 (2015): 105–18.
  • Robert C. Berring, “Seattle, Berkeley, and the Fighting Librarians,” Legal Reference ServicesQuarterly 35 (2016): 1–17.
  • Robert C. Berring, “The Home Stretch to the Next Deanship: Part V of the Education of a Law Librarian,” Legal Reference Services Quarterly 35 (2016): 215–30.

Professional Positions

  • Assistant Librarian, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, College of Law, 1974–75
  • Associate Librarian and Lecturer, Tarlton Law Library, University of Texas School of Law, 1976–78
  • Associate Librarian, Harvard Law School Library, 1978–79
  • Acting Librarian, Harvard Law School Library, 1979–80
  • Deputy Librarian, Harvard Law School Library, 1980–81
  • Professor of Law and Law Librarian, University of Washington School of Law, 1981–82
  • Director of the Law Library and Professor of Law, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, 1982–2005 (Walter Perry Johnson Professor of Law, 1997–present)
  • Dean, School of Library and Information Studies, University of California, Berkeley, 1986–89
  • Interim Dean, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, 2003–04
  • Associate Dean for Student Services, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, 2008–10

Education

  • B.A., Harvard College, 1971
  • J.D., University of California, Berkeley, 1974
  • M.L.S., University of California, Berkeley, 1974

Selected Professional Activities & Achievements (Outside AALL)

  • Admitted to the practice of law, California, 1974
  • Founding Editor, Legal Reference Services Quarterly, 1981–98 (volumes 1–17)
  • Member, Accreditation Committee, ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, 1986–89
  • Robinson Cox Fellow, University of Western Australia, 1988
  • Research Fellow, Institute of the Law, Chinese Academy of Social Science, 1989
  • Chair, Committee on Legal Education Exchange with China, 1992–94
  • Executive Board, Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction, 1994–97
  • Member, American Law Institute, 1998–present
  • Member, Board of Advisors, The Green Bag, 1998–present