• Oxford Hayek Society

Ilya Somin: Free to Move

Updated: Jun 12

This summary was written by Matteo Baccaglini, President.


On Monday 1 June 2020, we were delighted to welcome Professor Ilya Somin, Professor of Law at George Mason University, to speak to the Oxford Hayek Society via Zoom webinar on the subject of his recent book: 'Free to Move: Foot Voting, Migration and Political Freedom'.


You can find a Facebook video of the event, which was cohosted by Students for Liberty UK, below.



Free to Move, which was published in May by Oxford University Press, discusses how ‘foot voting’ – the ability of individuals to vote with their feet by moving – incentivises better policymaking, more so than voting by the ballot box. Ilya deconstructs the mechanics and benefits of foot voting in the private sector, in federal systems, and across national jurisdictions. He shows how broadening opportunities for foot voting in all three settings can increase the political liberty of millions across the globe and discusses the kinds of institutions which can best achieve this.


In his fascinating talk, Ilya presented the book's key ideas, answering questions on the incentives that differ between ballot box voting and foot voting, the effect of borders on centralisation, the impacts of different cultural values for federalisation, and much more.


You can buy Ilya's book courtesy of Amazon here.


Prof. Ilya Somin is Professor of Law at George Mason University in Virginia, United States, and Adjunct Scholar at the Cato Institute, an American libertarian thinktank based in Washington, D.C. Ilya’s research focuses on constitutional law, property law and popular political participation. Among his best-known books are Democracy and Political Ignorance: Why Smaller Government is Smarter (Stanford University Press, 2013) and The Grasping Hand: Kelo v City of New London and the Limits of Eminent Domain (University of Chicago Press, 2015). Ilya is widely-published in both the scholarly and popular press, including the Yale Law Journal, the Stanford Law Review, the New York Times and the Washington Post Wall Street Journal; he frequently blogs at Reason Magazine.


Students for Liberty is the largest international pro-liberty student network. It supports the future generation of pro-liberty leaders, empowering them through events, networks and educational resources.

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