Category: Conferences


Conference Announcement and Call for Papers

Professor Mike Zimmer, one of our former Co-Op guests, asked me to pass along information about A Constitutional Law Colloquium: “How Democratic is the Constitution?” For those who are interested, here are the details:

Loyola University Chicago School of Law is organizing A Constitutional Law Colloquium at the Philip H. Corboy Law Center, 25 East Pearson Street, Chicago, IL 60611. This year’s theme will be “How Democratic is the Constitution?” The event will begin on Friday morning, November 5 and end midday on Saturday, November 6, 2010.

Conference Organizers:

Professor Alexander Tsesis,, 312.915.7929
Professor Michael Zimmer,, 312.915.7919

Loyola invites abstract submissions of 150 to 200 words from Constitutional Law professors interested in contributing to the current debates under the broad rubric of this topic. The goal of the conference is to allow professors to develop new ideas with the help of supportive colleagues on a wide range of constitutional law topics.

This is the first annual Loyola conference bringing together constitutional law scholars at all stages of their professional development to discuss current projects, doctrinal developments in constitutional law, and future goals. We hope to schedule presentations for all who submit. In this way, we will provide a forum for the vetting of ideas and invaluable opportunities for informed critiques. Presentations will be grouped by subject matter.

The submission deadline for abstracts is May 31, 2010.
Topics, abstracts, papers, questions, and comments should be submitted to:

Program Administrator Carrie Bird,

Participants are expected to pay their own travel expenses. Loyola will provide facilities, support, and continental breakfasts on Friday and Saturday, lunch on Friday and Saturday, and a dinner on Friday night.


Fordham Law Review Symposium on April 16 & 17: The Adequacy of the Presidential Succession System in the 21st Century


The Fordham Law Review is organizing this event along with former Fordham Law School Dean John D. Feerick, a preeminent scholar on the Twenty-Fifth Amendment, and former Senator Birch Bayh, framer of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment.

The event is a two-day symposium, bringing together leading thinkers and experienced practitioners in the area of presidential succession: Former Senator Birch Bayh, who, as framer of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment and chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Constitutional Amendments, oversaw the hearings and debate on the topic; those who were on the front lines in developing the presidential succession structure (Fred Fielding, former White House Counsel to Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush, and Benton Becker who served as Counsel to President Ford); those who have written on the subject from a variety of perspectives (Professors Akhil Amar, John Feerick, Edward Foley, Joel Goldstein, Robert Gilbert, and Rose McDermott); Dr. John Fortier and Norman Ornstein, whose work on the Continuity in Government Commission has evaluated the adequacy of this system in a post-9/11 world; Constitutional Law scholars Dean William Treanor, Professor James Fleming, and Robert Kaczorowski; as well as Bill Baker, President Emeritus of WNET.ORG.

The Fordham Law Review will publish the symposium in its December 2010 issue.

Among a number of topics that will be discussed are the ambiguities in the existing constitutional provisions (for example, can presidents invoke the inability provision of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment to temporarily step down during moments of political crisis?); analysis of the constitutionality of the current Succession Act, which puts members of Congress in the line of succession; recommendations for handling a double vacancy in the Presidency and Vice Presidency and the constitutionality of current proposals for dealing with such a dilemma; important gaps and conflicts at various stages of transition (for example, disability or death prior to election or inauguration and potential conflict of interests arising in confirmation hearings of an appointed Vice President); and the constitutionality of informal—extraconstitutional and extrastatutory—arrangements between Presidents and their Vice Presidents, members of their cabinet, and members of Congress.

Friday, April 16 from 9:30 to 5:00 and Saturday, April 17 from 9:30 to 1:00
Fordham Law School
McNally Amphitheatre
140 West 62nd Street
New York, NY 10023
This event is free and open to the public.
Full Schedule here.


Intersectionality – brief follow-up

I’ve got more detailed notes from the fourth annual Critical Race Studies symposium that I had been hoping to get into shape for posting, but I’ve been swamped with other projects.  So instead of a detailed discussion of panels, I’ll just give a brief overview; time allowing, I’ll add some panel detail next week.   Read More


Not-Quite-Live-Blogging Intersectionality (Part I: General overview, Thursday)

I’m at the UCLA Intersectionality conference, and so far it has been phenomenal. I’m going to post some brief notes about the sessions I’ve attended so far. I’m typing these up while in a session – the intersectionality teaching and reading workshop. Hopefully these will be moderately coherent.

The conference started with an introduction from Saul, and quick comments from co-sponsors (including me, because TJSL is a co-sponsor of the event. The opening event was very well attended – a hundred people or so (maybe?), even though it was at 10 a.m. on a Thursday. Read More


The Yale Law Journal, Vol. 119, Issue 4 & Forthcoming Supreme Court Conference

The Yale Law Journal

January 2010 | Volume 119, Issue 4

Douglas G. Baird & Robert K. Rasmussen
Fourth Amendment Seizures of Computer Data
Orin S. Kerr
American Needle v. NFL: An Opportunity
To Reshape Sports Law

Michael A. McCann
Strategic or Sincere? Analyzing Agency Use of
Guidance Documents

Connor N. Raso
Suspending the Writ at Guantánamo: Take III? 825
Constitutional Avoidance Step Zero 837


On Tuesday, March 23, 2010, The Yale Law Journal Online will join with the Yale Law School Supreme Court Advocacy Clinic to host the concluding segment of “Important Questions of Federal Law: Assessing the Supreme Court’s Case Selection Process.”  The panel will bring together federal judges, members of the legal academia, and practitioners to discuss potential reforms to the Supreme Court’s certiorari process. All events will be held at Yale Law School’s Sterling Law Building in New Haven, CT. Please click here for more information.

Yale Law School | New Haven, CT | March 23, 2010

Panel I: The Judge’s Perspective: Is the Court Taking the “Right” Cases?
4:10pm‐5:30pm, Room 129

Moderator: Linda Greenhouse (Yale Law School)
The Honorable José Cabranes (2d Cir.)
Drew Days (Yale Law School)
The Honorable Brett Kavanaugh (D.C. Cir.)
The Honorable Sandra Lynch (1st Cir.)

Panel II: The Practitioners’ Perspective: What Makes An Issue “Important” to the Court?
5:40pm‐6:55pm, Room 127

Moderator: Charles Rothfeld (Mayer Brown LLP and Yale Law School)
John Elwood (Vinson & Elkins LLP)
Orin Kerr (George Washington University Law School)
Patricia Millett (Akin Gump LLP)
Judith Resnik (Yale Law School)


Quick Reminder: Intersectionality Conference at UCLA Law, March 11-13

I blogged about it a few months ago, when the call for papers was still open. Now that the conference is just around the corner, here’s another short reminder.

The UCLA Critical Race Studies program – along with a great group of co-sponsors including the Women and Law Project at Thomas Jefferson Law School, the Women of Color Collective at UCLA, the Williams Institute, LatCrit Inc., and a dozen more – is hosting a not-to-be-missed conference on intersectionality. Speakers include, just to name a few, Devon Carbado, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Angela Harris, Catherine MacKinnon, Mari Matsuda, Dorothy Roberts, and Patricia Williams, along with dozens of other leading scholars of feminist legal theory, critical race theory, intersectionality, and a variety of related topics touching on different marginalized groups.

More information, including schedule and registration information, is available at the conference website. I hope to see many of you there!


Call for Papers — March 12, 2010 Deadline

Seton Hall Law School will host the Third National People of Color Legal Scholarship Conference, September 9-12, 2010.  This conference will address critical national and global issues through the lens of legal scholarship that explicitly and implicitly examines contemporary racial context.  It will feature panels on the “war on terror,” urban revitalization, criminal law, health care, education, immigration, human trafficking, voting rights, international and comparative law, judicial nominations, environmental justice, and corporate responsibility, among others.  It will also include a Junior Faculty and Development Workshop.

The conference planning committee is seeking proposals for panels and workshops that fit within its broad theme, Our Country, Our World in a “Post-Racial” Era.  It is also accepting drafts for work-in-progress sessions and shorter “thoughts-in-progress” sessions to informally discuss future research and writing ideas. 

Please e-mail a one page abstract of your submission to Professor Kamille Wolff, Co-Chair of the Program Committee, at by March 12, 2010.  For more information about the conference, go to


Double Serendipity: Danielle Allen and the Institute for Advanced Study’s Sympoium on Technology and Education

One thing that Dan Burk, Mike Madison, Dan Solove, and a few others told me as I started my academic career was that it was important to read, read, read; attend conferences; and engage with other professors about their work. With that base one slowly but surely develops better material and grows a network of colleagues who will be able to let you know where you work is strong and where it needs improvement. I took that idea to mean go ahead and contact folks when you have something to say.

Just before I heard that I was going to be at Princeton, I contacted an old friend, Danielle Allen because some of her work on democracy and rhetoric caught my attention. Danielle and I had attended K-8 grades together but lost touch after that. It turns out that she just had seen my name in the acknowledgment section of one of Dan Solove’s books and wondered whether that was the same person she knew. It was. Danielle is at the Institute for Advanced Studies here in Princeton. We caught up over lunch, had a great time, and I learned about her work at IAS. One of her projects is the The Dewey Seminar: Education, Schools and the State, which she co-organized with Rob Reich. Here is the scope of the project:

Every society and political regime develops educational institutions and practices that substantially shape its evolution, revolutions, and stabilization over time. The Dewey Seminar will explore the interrelationships among education, justice, schools, and the state. Because of the centrality of education to the continuity of sociopolitical orders, its analysis embraces virtually all the social sciences. A significant number of the School’s Members this year will pursue work related directly to this theme-from exploring how diverse educational practices are linked to specific political orders to studying contemporary pressures on education and its capacity to support democratic political systems.

In 1916 the philosopher John Dewey published Democracy and Education: an introduction to the philosophy of education. He sought an account of education that could enable human flourishing both individually and collectively for democratic citizens. Our seminar takes its inspiration from his aspirations.

Anyone interested in these topics should go to the Seminar’s home page and check the participant list.

The seminar has various components one of which is a symposium series with practitioners. At lunch, Danielle mentioned that the January symposium is on Technology and Education. The people involved and their projects to use technology to generate real change in education are ambitious and inspiring. I will be attending and thinking about how these ideas connect to IP as a barrier to innovation, the Google Book deal, and where a combination of law and technology might be able to break through current problems in technology and education. In short, I have caught up with an old friend, and I get to hear leaders in their fields talk about the promises and challenges of technology and education. It is a great start to the new year, and I am grateful to those who were part of my enjoying a little double serendipity.


Overheard at AALS

Here are a few thoughts inspired by conversations I participated in or listened to at AALS (it’s not my fault that people persist in having very loud & irritating conversations over coffee, despite my dirty looks):

(1) A hiring committee chair talked about doing Google background checks on candidates for inconvenient facts. The rationale was that students would like come across pictures/stories themselves, and it was better to know than not. This struck me as an inevitable development, though sad.

(2) Many people complained about how the nametag culture at AALS encourages attendees to feel bad about themselves.  One solution offered was color-coded nametags that were keyed to the kind of social interaction you might expect.

Red: Individuals who, if spoken to, will inform you in great detail about a recent political fight on their faculty. Possible crazy. Avoid.  If you are engaged in a conversation with them, nod vigorously and say nothing.

Blue: Individuals who want a job at your school. Will laugh at your jokes and won’t look over your shoulder for at least two minutes. Engage as needed for a boost.  But don’t commit to anything.

Green: Individuals at schools you want to visit or move to. Will try to avoid you. Elevators are their weakness.

Black: Friends. Meet them later.

Orange: People who won’t deign to make eye contact with you.  There is no point in trying to hunt them down, except after they speak at a session, when they may treat you like a particularly dimwitted student.  Flattery will get you everywhere at that moment.

Purple: Members of your blog. Shouldn’t you know who they are?

Silver: Deans. Also known because they wear suits, and because they are looking at your pockets. Be careful. Their social skills are so much better than yours, that simply being near them makes you look more than ordinarily goofy.

Brown: AALS organizers, looking harried.  If you are outraged, consider engaging them at prepaid lunch over terrible food, when they are at a moral disadvantage.

(3)  I heard one professor telling another than she believed we were working “nine month” jobs since that is how the typical professor contract is worded (and since summer writing is rewarded through “grants” or “bonuses”).  I couldn’t disagree more.  Discuss.



A brief thanks and shout-out to all who attended the AALS happy hour last night. I saw Co-Op bloggers Frank, Dave, Deven, and Danielle, as well as Dan from Prawfs and a plethora of other blog readers and participants; there were far too many fascinating conversations to recap. Of course, discussions with Frank and Danielle merely whetted my appetite for their presentations later in the conference. Don’t miss Frank (and Danielle) on Privacy at 4 today (unless of course you’re going to Jaya’s immigration panel). And make sure to come to Danielle’s Saturday talk on cyberstalking. Or else we may have to track you down.