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René Reich-Graefe

Professor of Law
LL.M., University of Connecticut School of Law
LL.B. (equivalent), Free University of Berlin School of Law
Office: L 304

René Reich-Graefe teaches and writes in the fields of U.S. and international business organizations, corporate governance, commercial transactions, and legal philosophy, broadly conceived.  His latest research discusses modern social ontology research and the supraorganic emergence of sociolegal reality; summarizes the challenges of Anthropocenic disruption for law and legal education; critiques end-of-life medical decisionmaking and informed-consent law through the lens of traditional and behavioral economic theory; and conceptualizes the legal organization and intermediation of triple-helix innovation collaborations among academic, industrial and governmental sponsors.  Current works-in-progress focus on a socioeconomic modelling of calculative (Bayesian) trust; a historiographical account of the Moravian Church's General Economy in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, during 1741-62; a socio-ontological model of partnerships and corporations and a resultant critique of the governance of public and private firms; the legal protection of minority participants in closely-held businesses; and a social history of human Anthropocenic future.

René first came to the United States on a Fulbright scholarship, completing his LL.M. degree at the University of Connecticut School of Law.  He served as a law clerk at the Berlin Court of Appeals in Germany, and practiced as a corporate and financial lawyer for seven years at the former international law firm of Coudert Brothers LLP in Berlin and New York City.  He has taught at the University of Connecticut, the University of Maryland, and Northeastern University, has held visiting researcher positions at the University of Bristol in England, the University of Heidelberg in Germany, and Queen's University in Canada, and is admitted to practice in New York and Germany.


Business Organizations

Closely-Held Businesses

Corporate Finance for Closely-Held Businesses

Corporate Governance Seminar

Corporate Social (Ir)Responsibility

International Business Transactions


UCC Survey

ABA Negotiation Competition

Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot

International Business Transactions & the Closely-Held Business (online LL.M.)

Operation, Management & Control of the Closely-Held Business (online LL.M.)


Journal Articles

Socio-Philosophical Ontology: Supraorganic Emergence of Social Reality, 26 University of Pennsylvania Journal of Law and Social Change __ (forthcoming, 2023)

Anthropocenic Disruption, Community Resilience and Law, 41 Western New England Law Review 411-53 (2019) (symposium essay/foreword)

Rational Patient Apathy, 49 Seton Hall Law Review 535-628 (2019) (with Barbara A. Noah)

Intermediation in Intermediation: Triple Helix Innovation and Intermediary Legal Organisation, 3:10 Triple Helix 1-45 (2016) (peer-reviewed)

Calculative Trust: Oxymoron or Tautology?, 4 Journal of Trust Research 66-82 (2014) (peer-reviewed/special issue)

Keep Calm and Carry On, 27 Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics 55-69 (2014)

Deconstructing Corporate Governance: The Mechanics of Trusting, 38 Delaware Journal of Corporate Law 103-90 (2013)

Fiduciary Duties in the Closely Held Firm 35 Years After Wilkes v. Springside Nursing Home, 33 Western New England Law Review 247-68 (2011) (symposium essay/foreword)

Deconstructing Corporate Governance: Director Primacy Without Principle?, 16 Fordham Journal of Corporate & Financial Law 465-527 (2011)

Deconstructing Corporate Governance: Absolute Director Primacy, 5 Brooklyn Journal of Corporate, Financial & Commercial Law 341-404 (2011)

Changing Paradigms: The Liability of Corporate Groups in Germany, 37 Connecticut Law Review 785-817 (2005) (symposium essay)