University of Pittsburgh

Faculty News

Tuesday, June 7, 2011 - 2:40pm

Professor of Law and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Lu-in Wang will speakat the AALS Conference on the Future of the Law School Curriculum, June 11-14, 2011, in Seattle, Washington.  The conference will feature a number of joint sessions with the AALS Conference on Clinical Legal Education.   Professor Wang will present to a joint plenary session of both conferences, titled “Readiness for the Profession,” on June 14; she will discuss Pitt Law's new Lawyering course and the institutional support needed to implement it.


Link to Conference Description and Agenda

Monday, June 6, 2011 - 10:38am

Professor John Burkoff discussed the implications of surveillance cameras for privacy rights.  Burkoff told the Valley News Dispatch that police and prosecutors love the cameras and the evidence they can supply, but some question the effectiveness of cameras as crime-fighting tools.  According to Professor Burkoff, the cameras are legal and constitutional when used in public places, as long as they are used in reasonable ways that do not impinge on privacy.  "The question is: what is reasonable?"



Monday, June 6, 2011 - 9:42am

Professor Michael Madison has posted a new article to the Social Science Research Network (SSRN), titled "Knowledge Curation."

The abstract:

This Article addresses conservation, preservation, and stewardship of knowledge, and laws and institutions in the cultural environment that support those things. Legal and policy questions concerning creativity and innovation usually focus on producing new knowledge and offering access to it. Equivalent attention rarely is paid to questions of old knowledge. To what extent should the law, and particularly intellectual property law, focus on the durability of information and knowledge? To what extent does the law do so already, and to what effect? This article begins to explore those questions. Along the way, the article takes up distinctions among different types of creativity and knowledge, from scholarship and research to commercial entertainment and so-called “User Generated Content”; distinctions among objects, works of authorship, and legal rights accompanying both; distinctions among creations built to last (sometimes called “sustained” works), creations built for speed (including “ephemeral” works), and creations barely built at all (works closely tied to the authorial “self”); and distinctions between analog and digital contexts.

The article is forthcoming in the Notre Dame Law Review as part of a symposium on Creativity and the Law.

The paper can be downloaded from SSRN, using this link.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011 - 2:15pm

The 2011 Pocket Part to Professor John Burkoff’s Criminal Offenses & Defenses in Pennsylvania (6th ed. West) was published last week.  This treatise is Volume 14 of West’s Pennsylvania Practice Series.



Tuesday, May 31, 2011 - 3:14pm

In connection with his newest book, Tastes of Nuoc Mam – Service in the Brown Water Navy and Visits to Vietnam, Professor Douglas Branson spent the month of May traveling and conducting interviews.  Professor Branson spent 1966-67 on combat duty in the Vietnam War.  While in Hanoi. Professor Branson spent 2 evenings with Chi Lieu Dang, who was a student of Professor Branson’s.  Lieu received his Master of Laws degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 2008.  Lieu is now an associate at Baker & McKenzie’s Hanoi office, doing mergers and acquisitions work.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011 - 9:54am

Professor John Burkoff discusses the grand jury investigation of the Pennsylvania gaming Control Commission and the Commission's systemic problems to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.


Read the full article here

Tuesday, May 31, 2011 - 9:49am

Professor Haider Ala Hamoudi shares his thoughts on the legal rights of gay people under Islamic law. 


Read the full CNN article here

Monday, May 30, 2011 - 3:59pm

On May 23-27, 2011, Professor Ronald A. Brand represented the Center for International Legal Education (CILE) of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law as an Expert Observer at the United Nations in New York, 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.  Recent LL.M. graduate, Cristina Mariottini, also participated in the meetings as part of the CILE delegation.  Along with 2011 J.D. graduate, Jing Peng, Ms. Mariottini assisted Professor Brand in preparing a document on substantive legal principles governing ODR.


Monday, May 30, 2011 - 3:56pm

On Friday, May 22, 2011, Professor Ronald Brand participated as a member of the ASIL Working Group on Implementation of the Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements at Tillar House in Washington, D.C.  The Working Group was established to advise U.S. State Department Legal Adviser, Harold Koh, on the implementation of the 2005 Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements.  Its task is to reconcile differing positions between full federal implementation and implementation through “cooperative federalism” that would involve use of a Uniform International Choice of Court Agreements Act promulgated by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws.

Monday, May 23, 2011 - 11:15am

Assistant Professor Charles C. Jalloh has just co-published, with Dapo Akande (Oxford University, Faculty of Law, U.K.) and Max du Plessis (University of KwaZulu-Natal, Faculty of Law, South Africa), the lead article entitled Assessing the African Union Concerns about Article 16 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court in the Spring 2011 issue of the peer-reviewed African Journal of Legal Studies (AJLS), Vol. 4 No. 1, at pp. 5-50. This is an updated academic version of a commissioned expert position paper initially published in August 2010 in anticipation of the International Criminal Court’s Ninth Assembly of States Parties meeting held in New York in December 2010.  


Professor Jalloh is the Founding Editor-in-Chief of the AJLS, an interdisciplinary journal focused on human rights and rule of law issues in Africa, now jointly published by ALawI – The Africa Law Institute and Martinus Nijhoff Brill Publishers.  


Link to abstract and revised paper on SSRN


Link to journal's latest special issue

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