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The economic analysis of law has provoked strong reactions among French academics, in particular since 2004 when the first of the Doing Business reports was published. French jurists have joined forces to expose the methodological limits inherent to these reports, which rated France a long way behind other legal systems allegedly more able to facilitate business. In its first part, this article examines the various reactions to these reports, almost all of which were published in French only. In the second part, the focus is on the position of economic analysis in French law, its role, and, in particular, the impact of the Law and Economics school on comparative law in France. It also takes a look at the studies that followed, especially the legal origins thesis. The article shows that the various approaches are complementary and that economic analysis, without supplanting the traditional comparative approach, has considerable use. At a time when the globalization of business relationships is leading more than ever to a competition between the various national laws, comparatists should include more of this dimension into their field of study. Comparatists can also take a cue from economists on how to improve the relevance and the influence of their research in the public debate.

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57 Am. J. Comp. L. 811-830 (2009)