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How neuroscience explains the attraction of name-brand law firms

I jumped all over the notion that law department lawyers strongly favor admired and well-known law firms (See my posts of May 4 and May 23, 2007 about prestige firms.). A German research team in 2006, however, “announced that it had discovered that when people hear or see popular brands, the parts of their brains linked to self-identity and reward light up. Well-known brands — regardless of the product — activated parts of the brain associated with positive emotional processing; less familiar or unknown brands activated parts of the brain associated with negative emotional response.”

This finding comes from the Conf. Bd. Rev., Vol. 45, May/June 2007 at 22. Neuroscience may have foiled me. If they retain a name-recognition firm, a “popular brand,” in-house counsel may enjoy a dopamine rush. Unproven, no-namers cause downers.