GW Law Professor Receives Fulbright Award

Jeremy Bearer-Friend will research poll taxes at the National Library of Scotland in spring 2022.

Jeremy Bearer-Friend
April 19, 2021

Jeremy Bearer-Friend, an associate professor of law at GW Law, has been named the recipient of a Fulbright Award to the United Kingdom, where he will research poll taxes at the National Library of Scotland in the spring of 2022.

Mr. Bearer-Friend’s research will draw from the National Library of Scotland's unique collection to enrich the transnational understanding of tax filing as a forum for political expression and the use of capitation in tax policy.

He will explore the anti-poll tax movement, which transformed UK tax policy and is partially credited with the end of the former Prime Minister’s Margaret Thatcher government, a key example of how tax filing shapes taxpayers' relationship to the state and to each other.

“One of the joys of being a law professor is that I get to write scholarship that not only describes what the law is or has been, but also what the law should be,” said Mr. Bearer- Friend. “Adding a comparative law perspective to my work will be invaluable for developing new tax ideas and new tax policy proposals.”

Mr. Bearer-Friend joined GW Law after serving as acting assistant professor of tax law at New York University. His prior scholarship on fiscal citizenship and tax filing has examined the use of tax forms for voter-registration as well as the omission of race and ethnicity from tax data collection and tax data analysis.

Earlier this year, his proposal to disaggregate tax data by race and ethnicity was included in President Joe Biden’s Executive Order on Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government, issued on the first day of the Biden administration.

Prior to academia, Mr. Bearer-Friend was tax counsel to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) leading the senator’s work on a wide range of tax matters. He remains actively engaged with public policy and regularly provides tax law guidance to journalists, think tanks, presidential campaigns and congressional staff. He is currently serving a three-year term on the editorial board of “The Tax Lawyer,” a peer-reviewed tax law journal published by the ABA Tax Section.


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