Paul B. Stephan

Visiting Professor of Law


Paul B. Stephan is visiting Duke Law in the spring 2014 semester from the University of Virginia School of Law where he is the John C. Jeffries, Jr., Distinguished Professor of Law, the David H. Ibbeken '71 Research Professor, and director of the Graduate Studies Program.  At Duke Law he will teach International Business Transactions.

An expert on international business and Soviet and post-Soviet legal systems, Stephan has advised governments and international organizations, organized conferences, edited books and lectured to professionals, university groups and high school students on a variety of issues raised by the globalization of the world economy and the transition away from Soviet-style socialism. During 2006-07, he served as counselor on international law in the U.S. Department of State. Other interests for Stephan, who joined the University of Virginia’s law faculty in 1979, include international law, taxation and constitutional law.

Stephan received his BA and MA from Yale University in 1973 and 1974, respectively, and his JD from the University of Virginia in 1977.   In law school, he was executive editor of the Virginia Law Review and a member of the Order of the Coif. During the two-year period between his graduation and return as a professor, he clerked for Judge Levin Campbell of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell Jr. He spent the winter and spring of 1998 as a guest professor at the University of Vienna; the summers of 2000 and 2005 as a guest professor at Münster University; the fall of 2001 as a guest professor at Lausanne University; the summers of 2002, 2004 and 2006 as a visiting lecturer at Melbourne University; the fall of 2004 as a guest professor on the law faculty of University of Pantheon-Assas, Paris, and at Sciences Po; the winters of 2008-09 and 2011-12 as a visiting professor at the Interdisciplinary Centre, Herzliya; and the spring of 2010, 2011 and 2013 as a guest lecturer at Sydney University. He has also taught regularly at Peking University School of Transnational Law in Shenzhen, China.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Stephan worked on a variety of projects involving law reform in former socialist states. He worked in Russia, Georgia, Ukraine, Albania and Slovakia on behalf of the U.S. Treasury and in Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan on behalf of the International Monetary Fund. He also organized training programs for tax administrators and judges from all of the formerly socialist countries under the auspices of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. His casebook on international business is used at law schools both in the United States and abroad. He has written extensively on international law, corruption and the history of the Cold War. Most recently, he is the co-author, with Robert Scott, of The Limits of Leviathan: Contract Theory and the Enforcement of International Law (Cambridge University Press, 2006). His current research interests include books on the political economy of international lawmaking and on the collapse of communism. He also is Coordinating Reporter for the Restatement (Fourth) of the Foreign Relations Law of the United States and Co-Reporter for the Restatement (Fourth) of the Foreign Relations Law of the United States‒Jurisdiction.