The British Academy is the United Kingdom's national body for the humanities and the social sciences. Its purpose is to inspire, recognise and support excellence in the humanities and social sciences, throughout the UK and internationally, and to champion their role and value.It receives an annual...
(born December 11, 1931) is an American philosopher and scholar of constitutional law
United States constitutional law
United States constitutional law is the body of law governing the interpretation and implementation of the United States Constitution.- Introduction :United States constitutional law defines the scope and application of the terms of the Constitution...
. He is Frank Henry Sommer Professor of Law and Philosophy at New York University
New York University
New York University is a private, nonsectarian research university based in New York City. NYU's main campus is situated in the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan...
and Emeritus Professor of Jurisprudence at University College London
University College London
University College London is a public research university located in London, United Kingdom and the oldest and largest constituent college of the federal University of London...
, and has taught previously at Yale Law School
Yale Law School
Yale Law School, or YLS, is the law school of Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Established in 1824, it offers the J.D., LL.M., J.S.D. and M.S.L. degrees in law. It also hosts visiting scholars, visiting researchers and a number of legal research centers...
and the University of Oxford
University of Oxford
The University of Oxford is a university located in Oxford, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest surviving university in the world and the oldest in the English-speaking world. Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096...
. An influential contributor to both philosophy of law
Jurisprudence is the theory and philosophy of law. Scholars of jurisprudence, or legal theorists , hope to obtain a deeper understanding of the nature of law, of legal reasoning, legal systems and of legal institutions...
and political philosophy
Political philosophy is the study of such topics as liberty, justice, property, rights, law, and the enforcement of a legal code by authority: what they are, why they are needed, what, if anything, makes a government legitimate, what rights and freedoms it should protect and why, what form it...
, Dworkin received the 2007 Holberg International Memorial Prize
Holberg International Memorial Prize
The Holberg International Memorial Prize was established in 2003 by the government of Norway with the objective of increasing awareness of the value of academic scholarship within the arts, humanities, social sciences, law and theology, either within one of these fields or through interdisciplinary...
in the Humanities for "his pioneering scholarly work" of "worldwide impact." According to a survey in The Journal of Legal Studies
The Journal of Legal Studies
The Journal of Legal Studies is a law journal published by the University of Chicago Press focusing on interdisciplinary academic research in law and legal institutions....
, Dworkin was the second most-cited American legal scholar of the twentieth century.
His theory of law as integrity
Law as integrity
In philosophy of law, law as integrity is a theory of law put forward by the legal philosopher Ronald Dworkin.- External links :*http://law.queensu.ca/facultyAndStaff/facultyDirectory/walters/legalHumanismAndLawAsIntegrityPublishedEd.pdf...
, in which judge
A judge is a person who presides over court proceedings, either alone or as part of a panel of judges. The powers, functions, method of appointment, discipline, and training of judges vary widely across different jurisdictions. The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially and in an open...
s interpret the law in terms of consistent and communal moral principles, especially justice and fairness, is amongst the most influential contemporary theories about the nature of law.
"A judge's discretion, like the hole in the doughnut, does not exist except as an area left open by a surrounding belt of restriction."