Sen Elizabeth Warren is probably America's leading academic expert on bankruptcy law.
I just read this article in the New York Times about how her studies of bankruptcy shaped her academic and then political career.
I was practicing bankruptcy law in Maryland at the time the 1978 bankruptcy code was passed. Almost immediately, credit card companies started doing research and lobbying to make the law harder on people. Professor Warren went out, talked to bankruptcy judges and studies the records of thousands of consumer bankruptcy cases.
You can read here about what she found.