But he was at the institute to consider another aspect of Brandeis’ legacy: what he might think about modern American work law.
Liebman focused on companies like Uber, which act as intermediaries between those needing a service and those willing to provide the service. Uber, an on-demand ride service, does not claim its drivers as employees. Drivers use their own cars and set their own schedules, but Uber does have restrictions on what kind of cars can be used and manages how and when the drivers are paid.
“What would Brandeis say about that?” Liebman asked.
Brandeis emphasized facts and economics when forming legal opinions, he said, but there are not yet specific answers to questions about what such businesses will do about providing health care or regulating hours.
“We’re not ready to do that in this particular area of change in the law,” Liebman said. “A Brandeisian thinker would be a good thing in trying to figure this out.”
View more photos from the event online.