5 MINUTES WITH: PROFESSOR CHRISTOPH KUMPAN

Among other things, Prof. Kumpan speaks about his time in the U.S., what he learned there, and the experience of taking the bar exam in a hat and scarf.

Research & Faculty |

Christoph Kumpan is a Professor at the Chair of Civil Law, Corporate Law and Capital Markets Law and is, inter alia, Director of the Notarial Law Center for Family Businesses, the Institute for Corporate and Capital Markets Law, the Center for Interdisciplinary Research on Energy, Climate and Sustainability and Project Leader of the Hamburg Network for AI and Law.

MEDICINE OR LAW?

Prof. Kumpan discovered his love for law only after completing his secondary studies. In fact, he initially worked in a hospital, as he concentrated on a medical profession. Fortunately, legal studies appealed to him even more. However, it was only during his time at the Max Planck Institute in Hamburg, under his academic teacher Klaus Hopt, that he came to know and love the special diversity of his new field.

 

 

AMERICA - INSPIRATION AND LESSONS

Christoph Kumpan earned his L.L.M. at the University of Chicago. He was able to "take in a lot" during his time there. He liked, for example, the "straight forward nature of Americans," who see problems and difficulties as a challenge that must be met.

 

TEACHING ON EQUAL FOOTING

He benefited greatly from his time at the University of Chicago in a variety of ways. On the one hand, he tried to integrate the way of teaching he experienced there, the so-called Socratic method, into his own teaching:

Engaging in conversation with the students, discussing, letting the students develop thoughts and work out ideas together. On the other hand, he was able to further his education in terms of content, especially in capital market law, in view of the fact that the American capital market is the largest in the world. This led to intensive and inspiring comparative law work in capital market law.

 

AN EXCITING EXPERIENCE: ATTORNEY AT LAW IN THE USA

After completing his master's degree in the U.S., Prof. Kumpan also took the bar exam there. In order to prepare for this exam, he had to attend a two-month revision course after completing his master's degree. This was a very valuable experience for him. On the one hand, to see how exams are conducted in the U.S.: outside it was almost 40 degrees (Fahrenheit of Celsius?) and the exams were taken in a large, air-conditioned room with people wearing hats and scarves.

On the other hand, this experience showed him that legal education in Germany is better than some people give it credit for. Despite the head start of his American fellow examinees, who had considerably more preparation time than the two months of legal coaching for the foreign candidates, Christoph Kumpan found the exam "doable". Truly an exciting experience!

 


5 MINUTES WITH

In the video series: "5 minutes with" we introduce our professors. What kind of chair do they hold and what are their main areas of work? In addition, we are just as interested in what kind of people our professors are. Who is behind the position? What particularly fascinates them about the university and about Hamburg? We answer all this and much more in "5 minutes with". Click here for all episodes:

ALL PORTRAITS


 

THE LAW AND ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

Together with his colleague Prof. Ringe from the University of Hamburg, Prof. Kumpan founded the NAIL project (Network for AI and Law). It was a shared concern for both of them to make the topic of artificial intelligence, which is also becoming increasingly important from a legal perspective, present in Hamburg on a scientific level and to promote meetings and discussions between the areas of science, legal practice and society.

The idea is that, once a month during the lecture period, an academic or a practitioner is invited to give a lecture on a current topic from his/her respective field. The goal is to bring the topic to Hamburg in order to interest a broader circle at Bucerius Law School and the University of Hamburg and to start a meaningful dialogue.

UNDERSTATEMENT: A HAMBURG VIRTUE

What Prof. Kumpan appreciates most about the people of Hamburg is their restraint and "understatement”. That suits him just fine! But he also likes the city itself with its nature, lakes and bridges, and he is always discovering new characteristics of the various districts.

 

Author

Florian Helwich, Emma Schimmel

Hamburg