In 1890, Louis Brandeis wrote The Right to Privacy. Within a matter of years, the courts began adopting his theory, creating a newly articulated legal right. This article likely represented the high-water mark of legal academia in terms of real world impact. In recent years, the academy has lost much of its relevance. Chief Justice Roberts ridiculed academic work, suggesting that legal scholarship has become esoteric and irrelevant. This should not be the case. The quality of legal scholars is higher than it has ever been—young scholars now often enter the academy with doctoral degrees in related fields. Likewise, technology has placed a world of information at our fingertips. Scholars can write pieces that react to quickly changing events at an unprecedented speed.
Primus, Richard A., Kevin M. Stack, Christopher Serkin, and Nelson Tebbe. "Debating Is the Constitution Special?" Cornell Law Review 102, no. 6 (2017): 1649-1716. (PDF added to SSRN 11/09/2017 https://ssrn.com/abstract=3055261.)