A Message from the Dean
Dear Alumni and Friends,
As we reach fall break and students are departing for their home cities in every corner of the globe for a short respite, I’m preparing for a two week trip that will take me to China and India. Many of my colleagues are traveling internationally, as well, because ours is a global culture—a hallmark of Cornell Law School’s curriculum and scholarship.
The legal landscape is ever expanding and Cornell Law School has often led the charge to broaden perspectives and improve legal practice globally in both the public and private sectors. The topic of international legal studies is so broad that we’ve spread it over two issues. This issue—Part I—focuses on the curriculum and the students’ perspective of an international legal education. The spring issue of Forum—Part II—will focus on faculty scholarship and an overview of current studies in international and comparative law.
No examination of our international programs would be complete without an understanding of our history. Many of you reading this issue studied under Rudolf Schlesinger or Jack Barceló, who have helped put our international programs on the map. You may have been classmates with Leo Berger ‘56, Jack Clarke ‘52, or Anthony Wang ‘68, who have all played key roles in the funding of our international programs. And, you’ve likely sat next to any one of the many alumni featured in this issue whose careers have taken them to all corners of our global legal landscape. You may even find your name in these pages. But it was Myron Taylor who laid the foundation for our international programs in both a literal sense, as embodied by our famed Peace Tower—the focal point of the Law School that carries his name—and in an aspirational sense, by his life’s work.
Today, Cornell Law School is impressively cosmopolitan. This year’s incoming J.D., LL.M., and J.S.D. students represent more than thirty countries from six continents. We are also hosting twenty-six exchange students from twenty law schools around the world through our extensive study abroad program, as well as guest lecturers and visitors from the farthest reaches.
Half of our incoming LL.M. students and most of our international students entering the J.D. program are from East Asia. It should come as little surprise, then, that our Chinese law program is expanding. This year, we welcome Zhu Suli, the Anthony W. and Lulu C. Wang Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law, a world renowned scholar hailing from Peking University. In January, we welcome another renowned scholar and our newest permanent faculty member, Xingzhong Yu, the Anthony W. and Lulu C. Wang Professor in Chinese Law. We’ve also recently formed an exchange agreement with KoGuan Law School in Shanghai, which is featured in this issue.
As I mentioned at the start of my letter, our faculty is traveling far and wide. Just a few examples: In July, Greg Alexander and Eduardo Peñalver taught a seminar on property theory in South Africa. Angela Cornell spent part of her summer in Nicaragua training law professors and deans. Ted Eisenberg spent a Rule of Law Fellowship in Russia in April and May. Valerie Hans and Jeffrey Rachlinski organized a conference held in Paris on Popular Justice. Hans also traveled to Japan and Rachlinski spent time in Canada, Israel and The Netherlands presenting research. Earlier this year, George Hay traveled to Australia to appear as an expert witness in two separate antitrust cases. Sital Kalantry traveled to Columbia with three students in April to interview indigenous communities about access to education. In June, Anne Lukingbeal traveled to Ho Chi Minh City on behalf of the ABA. Muna Ndulo traveled to both Mexico and South Africa, and has played key roles in recent months assisting in efforts to create constitutions for both the Republic of South Sudan and Zimbabwe. Annelise Riles recently returned from Japan after doing research for the Bank of Japan. Chantal Thomas traveled to France, Tunisia, Egypt, and England, and has played a key role in providing commentary and background for those following the Arab Spring uprisings. Earlier this year, Chuck Whitehead lectured in Turkey and was a visiting professor in Germany. And, many of our faculty members participated in our annual Paris Summer Program, also covered in this issue.
To give you a sneak peek at some of the events going on now and in the coming weeks that we’ll be covering in the spring issue related to international legal studies, Professors Alexander and Barceló are traveling to China for various lectures and conferences. Valerie Hans is heading to Russia for comparative jury research. Sital Kalantry and Sara Lulo from the Avon Global Center for Women and Justice at Cornell Law School are organizing a conference with one of our newest exchange partners, Jindal Global Law School in India. Back in Ithaca, Chantal Thomas of the Clarke Initiative for Law and Development in the Middle East and North Africa is co-organizing a multidisciplinary conference that’s bringing some of the foremost scholars on water law in the world together for a weekend in November. The Law School is also hosting four colloquium series this semester, bringing lecturers from all corners of the globe and addressing various aspects of international law. International programs are a key element of Cornell University’s priorities for the continuation of the Campaign, and we have accepted $1.5 million as part of our goals moving forward. We are grateful to the Clarkes and the Wangs for their ongoing commitments to our international programs; to Mark Nozette ‘74 and Charles Eddy ‘70, whose generous gifts are featured in this issue; as well as to all of you who have contributed this year. Alumni gave a record $1.84 million to the Annual Fund this past fiscal year and we have set a target of $2 million for the 2011–2012 fiscal year.
Finally, I would like to offer a hearty welcome to our new permanent faculty members who joined us this semester. We welcome health care law and economics scholar Michael Frakes as an assistant professor of law; Femi Cadmus, the new Edward Cornell Law Librarian and Associate Dean for Library Services; and, Susan Hazeldean as an assistant clinical professor. I wish you all the best in your travels and as you read about ours,
The Allan R. Tessler Dean and Professor of Law
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