Assessment of the value in a professor’s testimony

In some cases, a professor’s legal testimony can be very valuable. A judge has now stated on the record just how valuable, measured by cash, that can be: “a million dollars or so”.

A December 18, 2023 Associated Press report, headlined “Judge criticizes Trump’s expert witness as he again refuses to toss fraud lawsuit“, says:

Judge Arthur Engoron issued a written ruling Monday… Engoron wrote that the “most glaring” flaw of Trump’s argument was to assume that the testimony provided by Eli Bartov, an accounting professor at New York University, and other expert witnesses would be accepted by the court as “true and accurate.”

“Bartov is a tenured professor, but the only thing his testimony proves is that for a million or so dollars, some experts will say whatever you want them to say,” Engoron wrote.

Bartov, who was paid nearly $900,000 for his work on the trial, said in an email that the judge had mischaracterized his testimony.

A prize-winning client

Trump (pictured here on the right) is Donald Trump, co-winner of the 2020 Ig Nobel Prize for Medical Education (for using the Covid-19 viral pandemic to teach the world that politicians can have a more immediate effect on life and death than scientists and doctors can).

A professor of firm value

Professor Bartov (pictured here on the left) is co-author of the study “Corporate Social Responsibility and the Market Reaction to Negative Events: Evidence from Inadvertent and Fraudulent Restatement Announcements” (published in The Accounting Review, vol. 96, no. 2, 2021, pages 81–106). The study says:

we show, in contrast to prior research, that depending on management conduct leading to the restatement, a company’s Corporate Social Responsibility performance may destroy, not necessarily enhance, firm value.


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