University of Pittsburgh

Faculty News

Thursday, December 1, 2011 - 1:56pm

For the second time this fall, Congress has passed federal-courts legislation that incorporates ideas and drafting suggestions of Pitt Law Professor Arthur D. Hellman. The bill is H.R. 394, the Federal Courts Jurisdiction and Venue Clarification Act of 2011 (JVCA). The JVCA, which President Obama is expected to sign, embodies the most far-reaching package of revisions to the Judicial Code since 1990. 

Key provisions of the JVCA revise the law governing the removal of cases from state to federal court and the determination of venue (the proper district within the federal judicial system). The authoritative legislative history of the JVCA is the Report issued by the House Judiciary Committee. That Report acknowledges Professor Hellman’s contributions to the bill: “Legal scholars from the law schools of the University of Houston, Chicago-Kent, Loyola, and Duke endorsed changes to the original text of the bill [considered in a previous Congress], which were developed by Professor Arthur Hellman of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, who testified at the 2005 Subcommittee hearing and contributed to the project in the 111th Congress.”

Report link here

Monday, November 28, 2011 - 8:16pm

With Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State coach accused of sexually assaulting young boys, out on bail, observers have been surprised to find that the judge who set bail had connections to The Second Mile, Sandusky's charity.  The judge had been both a Second Mile volunteer and a donor, and the organization's chairman held two fundraisers for the judge's campaign for office.  Professor John Burkoff said that though such conflicts are not unusual, but “[w]hat makes this one uncommon is the amount of public attention and national scrutiny.”

Article link

Monday, November 28, 2011 - 11:59am

George H Pike recently wrote a article for Information Today discussing the implications of the previously introduced PROTECT-IP Act and its companion bill, the Stop Online Piracy Act. Both are intended to address the current issues of online piracy including the limitations of previous, outdated laws. Read more on George S Pike's account at http://newsbreaks.infotoday.com/NewsBreaks/Controversy-Surrounds-Stop-Online-Piracy-Act-as-MarkUp-Approaches-79077.asp.

Sunday, November 27, 2011 - 4:31pm

On November 18, 2011, Professor Ronald Brand lectured on “Shaping Rule of Law Through Legal Education” at a symposium on “The Shaping of Society and Economy Through Law” at the University of Augsburg Faculty of Law.  The Symposium celebrated the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Faculty of Law.  Later the same day, Brand was awarded the degree of Doctor Iuris Honoris Causa by the University of Augsburg Faculty of Law.  On November 21, 2011, Brand presented a lecture on “The Fifth Freedom in the European Union and the United States” in the course on EU Law, also at the University of Augsburg.

 

Sunday, November 27, 2011 - 4:26pm

Assistant Professor Charles C. Jalloh participated as a commentator in the 2011 Faculty Colloquium on International Law and Theory, hosted by the Whitney R.  Harris World Law Institute at Washington University School of Law on November 17-18, 2011.

Link to the Colloquium program here.

Sunday, November 27, 2011 - 4:22pm

On November 14-16, 2011, Professor Ronald Brand represented the Center for International Legal Education (CILE) and the University of Pittsburgh School of Law as an Expert Observer at the United Nations in Vienna, Austria, in meetings of Working Group III of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) to discuss proposed procedural rules governing online dispute resolution (ODR).  CILE has been invited by the UNCITRAL Secretariat to provide an expert delegation to assist the UNCITRAL Member States in determining how best to deal with the need for online dispute resolution in high volume, low value cross border transactions.  Visiting Scholar, Cristina Mariottini, and LL.M. student (and University of Zagreb Ph.D. candidate) Dora Zgraabljic Rotar, joined Brand on the CILE delegation, and covered the meetings on November 17-18, when Brand could not be present.  Mariottini, Rotar, and Pitt LL.M. and J.D. graduate, Jing Peng, have created working papers that have been used in the UNCITRAL discussions over the course of the past year.

 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011 - 2:06pm

Professor Elena Baylis presented her paper, “Justice Junkies on the Move,” at the 2011 Faculty Colloquium on International Law and Theory, held by the Whitney R.  Harris World Law Institute at Washington University School of Law on November 17-18, 2011. The paper presents the first set of findings from Professor Baylis’s recent empirical research study of internationals working in post-conflict justice.  

 

Details on the program: link

Tuesday, November 22, 2011 - 1:50pm

Professor John Burkoff commented on the cautious nature of the investigation that led to the recent scandal at Penn State.  As Pennsylvania's attorney general, Tom Corbett, who is now governor, led the inquiry.  Corbett has defended his very careful, tight-lipped approach.  According to Professor Burkoff, Corbett's approach was reasonable, but “It’s not the only reasonable strategy... These are very difficult prosecutions, and I think it’s correct that the more victims that are identified and the more stories that can be corroborated, the stronger the case is.”

 

Patriot-News article link

Monday, November 21, 2011 - 4:59pm

On Friday, November 18, Professor Deborah Brake presented a faculty workshop at the University of Cincinnati School of Law.  The talk was based on Professor Brake's draft article titled, “Wrestling with Gender: Constructing Masculinity by Not Wrestling Women.”

Monday, November 21, 2011 - 4:54pm

Professor John Burkoff told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that the intense publicity surrounding the child abuse accusations against former Penn State Assistant Coach Jerry Sandusky may make it quite difficult to seat an impartial jury.  Professor Burkoff said that the ""incandescent glare of white-hot publicity sometimes obscures the presumption of innocence."

 

Link to Tribune-Review article here.

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