With modifications to reflect its chosen subject matter, the mission statement for the Criterion Journal on Innovation is adapted from that of the Bell Journal of Economics & Management Science (now called the RAND Journal of Economics), first published by the American Telephone & Telegraph Co. in the spring of 1970 under the editorship of Paul W. MacAvoy, then a professor at MIT:
After publishing in law reviews for 35 years, I perceived the need for a professional medium specifically devoted to fresh, scholarly thinking on the law and economics of innovation. One motivation for starting a new journal for (primarily) legal scholarship is that the process of publishing in law reviews is inefficient. Their editing process is slow, spasmodic, and prone to error. In an age of immediate and ubiquitous access to content on the Internet, the law review staffs are monks copying parchment manuscripts by hand.
A separate but complementary problem, which Judges Harry Edwards and Richard Posner have emphasized, is that legal scholarship lacks practical value to judges deciding actual cases. More broadly, decision makers in other situations, such as regulation, arbitration, legislation, and business negotiation, might find innovation and research in legal thought useful, if scholars would only supply it.
Thus, it seemed to me that the dissemination of objective, scholarly articles about advances in the law and economics of innovation would greatly assist policy makers, jurists, and managers in private companies. Consequently, I decided to publish a journal whose purpose is to encourage and support research in the issues and problems of innovation. The result is the Criterion Journal on Innovation.
I have purposefully associated the name Criterion with this Journal in the knowledge that it will be compelled to compete in the marketplace of ideas, where the quality of its articles will speak for itself. The Journal’s ultimate success in stimulating research, thinking, and understanding in the issues and problems of innovation will directly depend on its continued intellectual independence and quality.
I will select the articles to be published in the Criterion Journal on Innovation. Criterion Economics, its employees, and its clients do not necessarily endorse the topics, approaches, conclusions, or interpretations of any article published. I neither solicit nor receive any financial support for the Journal from any client, company, or interest group. With some of the views expressed here I shall agree, with others disagree. That is not important. What matters is that the very best thinking be applied to the tasks and opportunities ahead.
J. Gregory Sidak
March 31, 2016