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Search and explore Duke Law's wide variety of courses that comprise nearly every area of legal theory and practice. Contact the Director of Academic Advising to confirm whether a course satisfies a graduation requirement in any particular semester.

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NOTE: Course offerings change. Faculty leaves and sabbaticals, as well as other curriculum considerations, will sometimes affect when a course may be offered

NOTE: Course descriptions are in the process of being updated, and many still include reference to remote teaching during the 2020-21 academic year. With very few exceptions, all Fall 2021 classes will be taught in person only.

JD/LLM in International & Comparative Law

JD/LLM in Law & Entrepreneurship

International LLM - 1 year

Certificate in Public interest and Public Service Law

Areas of Study & Practice

Clear all filters 54 courses found.
Number Course Title Credits Degree Requirements Semesters Taught Methods of Evaluation

202

Art Law 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing
  • IntlLLM Business Cert
  • IntllLLM IP Cert
  • Fall 19
  • Fall 20
  • Spring 22
  • Final Exam, option
  • Research paper option, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

This course will cover a number of intersections between the law and the people and institutions who constitute the world of the visual arts, including artists, museums, collectors, dealers, and auctioneers. The course will also cover non-legal material geared to shaping practices of art market participants, such as codes and guidelines adopted by art-museum associations, as well as some relevant literature from other academic disciplines. Specific topics will include: (1) contexts in which a legal institution must determine whether a particular object is a work of "art" or art of a particular type; (2) artists' rights, including statutory and non-statutory moral rights and resale rights; (3) problems of authenticity; (4) the legal rights and duties of auctioneers, art dealers, and other intermediaries; (5) the legal structure of art museums, including issues of internal management and governance; (6) stolen art, including objects looted during World War II; and (7) developments in law and industry practice relevant to "cultural heritage," the association of particular objects with particular places or societies.

Students will be required to participate in class discussions, and will have the option of writing a 25-30-page research paper OR taking a take-home exam. Paper topics must be approved by the instructor, who will be glad to make suggestions (some of which will involve local field research). To the extent feasible under the circumstances in Fall 2020, we will have individual in-person (one-on-one) meetings to discuss paper topics and interim progress. If that’s not feasible, the meetings will be via Zoom.

There are no prerequisites for the course. Although some background in intellectual property (copyright and trademark law) would be helpful, none is required. A set of readings will be distributed prior to the first meeting of the class. Before then, a complete updated syllabus will be posted. Our in-class sessions in Fall 2020 will be enriched through the (virtual) participation of guest experts.

218

Comparative Law 3
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • LLM-ICL (JD) required
  • LLM-ICL (JD) writing, option
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • Fall 21
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

This course provides an overview of comparative law. We will learn about the differences and similarities, both real and perceived, between different legal orders. We will compare both civil law and common law systems, and authoritarian and liberal legal systems. We will also investigate the rise and fall of foreign legal studies in the U.S., from soviet law in the 1960s-1970s, Japanese law in the 1980s-1990s, European Union law in the early 2000s, and Chinese law in the recent decade. We will investigate the impact of American law on foreign countries and international law, and foreign law in American courts. On a theoretical level, we will try to understand what it means to "compare", and how it can help us both to understand other legal systems as well as our own.

Class participation: 10%; 4 response papers (1 page per paper): 20%; final paper (26 pages minimum): 70%. JD students have an option to write a longer paper (30 pages minimum) to satisfy their writing requirements. Please seek the instructor's approval for this writing credit by the end of October. 

227

Use of Force in International Law 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • PIPS elective
  • Fall 19
  • Fall 20
  • Fall 21
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research paper option, 25+ pages
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 20+ pages
  • Oral presentation
  • Class participation

This fall-only seminar is designed to introduce students with limited familiarity with international law to principles involved in the use of force during periods of putative peace. It will explore, for example, what circumstances constitute an “act of war” in variety of situations.

The course will analyze when and how force may be used in self-defense and will survey topics such as humanitarian intervention, hostage rescue, air defense identification zones, freedom of navigation operations, use of force in the cyber domain, and the legal aspects of international counter-piracy and counterterrorism operations (including drone strikes). Efforts to limit the use of force in outer space as well as the implications of nuclear weapons and the emergence of autonomous weaponry will be explored.

Case studies and current news events will be examined in conjunction with the covered issues. In addition, students will get an overview of the practical issues associated with the use of force, to include the weaponry, planning, and military techniques involved.

This course obviously addresses the use of force in international law. Accordingly, class instruction will inevitably include written, oral, and visual depictions of physical force and violence—and occasionally extreme representations of the same.

There is no textbook for this course, but there will be a course pack along with materials (students may be required to purchase the course pack, but the cost will not exceed $25).

There is no examination, but a 20-page paper (constituting 60% of the grade) is required on a topic chosen by the student and approved by the instructor. With instructor approval, the course paper may fulfill the Substantial Research and Writing Project or other writing requirements provided it is at least 30 pages in length and otherwise complies with SRWP requirements. The remainder of the grade (40%) is based on the quality and frequency of class participation, and may require the preparation of short presentations, and response papers.

242

Social Justice Lawyering 2
  • JD SRWP with add-on credit
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  • Fall 19
  • Fall 20
  • Fall 21
  • Reflective Writing
  • Group project(s)
  • Class participation
  • Other

Working for social justice is an important part of the professional obligations of all lawyers, and for many law students, their initial motivation for pursuing a legal education. This course is designed to introduce students to the ways in which lawyers committed to social justice engage with communities, individual clients, social and political causes and legal systems to help effect social change. We will examine the types of lawyers working toward social justice, the ways in which lawyers help shape claims in social justice cases, and finally, how lawyers use their skills and training to engage in political struggles and movements to achieve social justice for the communities, causes, or individual clients that they represent.

Through readings, discussion, and independent studies of legal cases and movements in social justice, students will explore different models of social justice lawyering and the barriers present both in the representation of under-served communities and in pursuing a career in public interest law. Students will also have an opportunity to explore more deeply how they plan to be a lawyer engaged in social justice work, either in their pro bono or full-time future practice.

242W

Social Justice Lawyering, Writing Credit 1
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing
  • PIPS elective
  • Fall 19
  • Fall 20
  • Fall 21
  • Research paper, 25+ pages

While enrolled in Law 242 Social Justice Lawyering, with prior professor approval, students may submit a 30-page research paper and earn an additional one credit for the course. This paper is in addition to all the other course requirements, including the written assignments, but may be related to your case study presentation.

The paper may be used to satisfy the upper level writing requirement, the LLM writing requirement, and/or the JD/LLM writing requirement. You must email Professor Gordon or McCoy by the end of the Registration Period and after enrolling in 242 Social Justice Lawyering if you would like to seek this additional credit; there are very limited spots, which will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis.

288

Consumer Bankruptcy & Debt 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • IntlLLM Business Cert
  • PIPS elective
  • Spring 20
  • Spring 21
  • Fall 21
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research paper option, 25+ pages
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Oral presentation
  • Class participation

This course uses consumer bankruptcy as a lens to study the role of consumer credit in the U.S. economy and society. The class will focus on the key aspects of the consumer bankruptcy system, including who files bankruptcy, what causes bankruptcy, the consequences of bankruptcy, and the operation of the bankruptcy system. We will discuss each of these issues in the larger context of consumer debt and consumer law, and will also cover the foreclosure crisis, student loans, and issues related to debt, race, and gender. The readings will come from law and non-law sources, including the work of a variety of social scientists.

Due to substantive overlap in material for the coming semester, students may not concurrently enroll in Law 288: Consumer Bankruptcy & Debt and Law 586: Current Debates in Bankruptcy Law. However, if you've taken one of the courses in a previous semester and wish to take the other, that will be permitted.

302

Appellate Courts 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • PIPS elective
  • Spring 21
  • Spring 20
  • Spring 22
  • Research paper, 25+ pages

This course will examine the practices and powers of American appellate courts, with a particular emphasis on the federal courts of appeals.  Our discussion will focus on the goals of these institutions and the extent to which individual components of the appellate decision-making process—including oral argument and opinion-writing—further those goals.

We will begin with an overview of the function of appellate courts—why they were created and what we expect of them today.  We will then move to the specific components of appellate adjudication, including mediation, briefing, oral argument, and judgment, as well as the personnel who contribute to the adjudication process.  Finally, we will consider the ways in which the appellate courts have been affected by an increasing caseload, and proposals for alleviating the strain on the courts.

Ultimately, the goal of the course is to expose you to how appellate courts operate and the purported goals of these institutions.  Over the course of the semester, you should also be evaluating what you think are the fundamental objectives of appellate review and whether the current structure of the courts allows them to meet those goals.

Evaluation in the course will be based on a final research paper, which may be used to satisfy the SRWP.

318

Comparative Constitutional Law 2
  • JD SRWP with add-on credit
  • LLM-ICL (JD) required
  • Fall 19
  • Fall 20
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Class participation

This course explores constitutional law from different parts of the world. The course will start by examining the goals, methods, and practical relevance of comparative constitutional analysis. We will then turn to a comparative analysis of constitutional structures, including differing approaches to separation of powers, judicial review, and federalism. The remainder of the course will examine comparative approaches to the constitutional protection of human rights.

This course is open only to the 2L JD-LLM-ICL students.

318W

Comparative Constitutional Law, Writing 1
  • JD SRWP
  • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
  • Fall 19
  • Fall 20
  • Research paper, 25+ pages

Students enrolled in Law318 Comparative Constitutional Law may choose to write a 25-30 page research paper, in lieu of the 10-12 page paper, in order to satisfy the JD Substantial Research and Writing Project degree requirement.  Students choosing this option should enroll in Law 318W.

320

Water Resources Law 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • IntlLLM Environ Cert
  • PIPS elective
  • Spring 20
  • Spring 21
  • Spring 22
  • Research paper, 25+ pages

This survey course studies the legal and policy issues governing water resource allocation in the United States. Students will be introduced to both the Prior Appropriation systems of the western United States and the Reasonable Use systems dominating the eastern states. We will study the law applied to groundwater use as well as laws and regulations governing the institutions who allocate water resources. We will also discuss the Safe Drinking Water Act and how environmental justice relates to water resource management.

321

The Law and Policy of Innovation: the Life Sciences 3
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • LLM-LE (JD) elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • IntlLLM Business Cert
  • IntllLLM IP Cert
  • Spring 20
  • Spring 21
  • Spring 22
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

This course analyzes the legal and policy regimes that shape the introduction of new products, processes, and services in the life science industries. Innovation in biopharmaceuticals, medical devices, health services, and health care delivery is central to the heavily regulated life sciences sector, and thus the sector offers a window into multiple intersections of scientific innovation, regulatory policy, and law.  Innovation in this sector is also shaped by multiple bodies of law (e.g. intellectual property law, FDA law, federal and state-based insurance and professional regulation, antitrust, tax), each with its own private and public constituencies, and therefore offers an opportunity to assess how different bodies of law approach the common issue of innovation.  Although this course focuses on innovation in the life science industries, this focus will produce lessons for innovation policy in other regulated and less-regulated industries. 

329

Education Law 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  • Fall 19
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation

Education Law: Constitutional, Statutory, and Policy Considerations This seminar introduces students to the legal standards that govern public schools in the United States. Constitutional topics include the right to a public education, the financing of public schools, desegregation and equal opportunity of students, limitations on student speech, school discipline and the right to due process, religion in schools, and privacy rights of students. Statutory topics include federal laws such as the Every Student Succeeds Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Title IX, and the Equal Educational Opportunities Act. Policy topics include school reforms, such as charters and vouchers, and the ongoing inequities in US public schools, and the school-to-prison pipeline. A research paper is required; successful completion of the paper will satisfy the upper-level writing requirement. A course pack will be used in lieu of a textbook.

367

Advanced Topics in Administrative Law 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

The objective of this course is to provide students the tools to delve deeper into policy questions that are currently arising in administrative law: What is the purpose of the administrative state?  How is it serving the public?  What are the costs and benefits of agency specialization and independence?  To what extent is public participation helpful in maintaining accountability?

Because administrative agencies are decision-making bodies that are not directly accountable to the electorate, accountability is often achieved by encouraging public participation, transparency, and notice.  This course will explore these themes in the context of selected administrative law topics.  Example topics include: agency capture, independence of administrative law judges, over-specialization of agency-specific precedent, preclusion of judicial review, public participation in rulemaking, the Freedom of Information Act, policy-making through adjudication, and informal agency action.  For certain topics, we will focus on one or two illustrative agencies (e.g., EPA, NLRB, PTO, IRS, VA, etc.).  Reading materials will include textbook excerpts, cases, and legal scholarship.  A previous administrative law course is preferred but not required.

Each class will consist of a background lecture followed by an interactive discussion of the policy issues raised in the reading.  The course will be taught as a two-hour weekly seminar, focused on class discussion of assigned readings. Students will complete one 25–30 page research paper that can be used to satisfy the upper-level writing requirement.  Students will also present their research papers to the class towards the end of the semester.

368

Natural Resources Law and Policy 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • IntlLLM Environ Cert
  • PIPS elective
  • Fall 20
  • Fall 21
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

The law of how we use nature - timber, mining, bioversity, fisheries, water rights, and agriculture. Also an introduction to the historical and constitutional geography of American public lands: the national parks, forests, wilderness system, and grazing lands, and disputes over federal versus local control of these. There is special attention to the historical and political origins of our competing ideas of how nature matters and what we should do with it, from economically productive use to outdoor recreation to preserving the natural world for its own sake. Attention also to the complicated interplay of science and law.

370

Modes of Legal Argument 3
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • Spring 21
  • Fall 21
  • Research paper option, 25+ pages
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 15 pages
  • Class participation

Introduction to Legal Theory: Modes of Legal Argument is a 3-credit seminar with enrollment capped at 12, and a final paper that can be used to satisfy the Substantial Research and Writing Project. 

The course will be organized around a set of essential questions, all vital to the ways we argue about the law. The major schools of legal and constitutional interpretation will be explored.  For example, we will discuss formalism and textualism, purposivism, originalism, process theory, economic analysis, realism and legal pluralism. Each of these theories has an answer to the question, what is the right way to interpret a legal text?  Beyond the text, what modes, or forms of argument are permissible, or mandatory, within our legal tradition?   But each of those inquiries depends on deeper questions. Where does law come from? What, if anything, makes it legitimate? It will also deal with some concrete examples in which those modes of legal argument are tested and deployed:  Does the law create the market economy, or is there a pre-existing template for market economies that frames and limit the interpretation of the laws that govern those markets?  The public/private distinction is central to a liberal society: do we have a consistent or principled way of interpreting those boundaries? How should our understanding of law be affected by the fact that we live in a democratic country, a free-market country, a country with a written constitution? We will consider and approach these questions by way of major schools of legal thought, testing the theoretical approaches against  concrete  problems the legal system has had to address, and the shapes these problems take today. 

Requirements:  The class requirements include regular Sakai postings on the readings.  Those who are using the paper to satisfy the Substantial Research and Writing Paper will write a 25-30 page final paper on an approved topic, going through the normal process of first draft, conference and revision.  Those who are not will write a 15 page final paper, either on an approved topic of your choice or on one assigned by the instructor.    No prior exposure to legal theory, philosophy or political theory is required.

473

Scholarly Writing Workshop 3
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing
  • Fall 19
  • Spring 20
  • Fall 20
  • Spring 21
  • Fall 21
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation
  • Other

In a workshop led by a faculty member, students will produce an original analytic paper of substantial length (ordinarily at least 30 pages). Papers must involve significant and thorough independent research, be well-written, and provide appropriate sourcing. Participants are free to choose any topic that may be addressed seriously in an article-length piece and that may be written during one semester. Papers produced in the workshop are expected to satisfy the JD or LLM substantial research and writing project requirement.

In the workshop, participants will learn about the conventional features of academic legal writing, conduct research into and hone their topics, write and give each other feedback on first and second drafts, and complete a final draft of their paper. The faculty member leading the workshop will also provide feedback and will, as appropriate to each participant's paper topic, facilitate introductions to other faculty who may be of assistance.

Because of the nature of this course it is exempt from Rule 3-1's median requirement.  Nevertheless, the expectation is that work produced in the workshop will be very strong.

International LLM students must be pre-certified to enroll. Interested students should check with the Office of International Studies before enrolling.

503

The Constitution in Congress 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • Spring 21
  • Spring 22
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research paper option, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

Many of America’s formative constitutional struggles occurred in the halls of Congress, rather than the courts. Principles now taken for granted were once vigorously contested, often along partisan or sectional lines. This course will explore moments of congressional deliberation that shaped the trajectory of American constitutional development. Likely topics include debates over the spending power, the acquisition of foreign territory, the criminalization of dissent, military conscription, women’s equality, Indian removal, the right to petition, the rendition of fugitive slaves, and the legacy of Dred Scott. Students will analyze key floor debates and committee reports alongside later Supreme Court decisions covering similar substantive ground. 

Throughout the course, we will encounter sophisticated and wide-ranging arguments on matters of first impression. These episodes provide rich historical insight into contemporary debates over how the Constitution should be interpreted. We will also consider the extent to which modern constitutional law has been shaped by concepts that have fallen out of favor (such as the idea of powers inherent in sovereignty) and by practices that are now viewed with moral revulsion. And we will reflect on the absence of perspectives that were systematically excluded from Congress until well into the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

The course will be taught as a two-hour weekly seminar, focused on class discussion of assigned readings. Students will complete either a series of reflection papers or one longer research paper that can be used to satisfy the upper-level writing requirement.

505

Criminal Justice Policy Lab 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  • Spring 20
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Oral presentation
  • Class participation

The growth in incarceration in the United States since the early 1970s has been “historically unprecedented and internationally unique,” as the National Research Council recently put it. This lab seminar will explore current debates about how best to improve our criminal justice system. The focus will be on concrete research projects with the potential to improve criminal justice outcomes in North Carolina. Students will learn how to conduct policy-based research on criminal justice problems, and students will choose projects and write research papers studying possible reforms. Visitors to the seminar will include leading lawyers, policymakers, and scholars to speak to the class, and to assist with the research efforts.  Students will better appreciate the challenges of designing a sound criminal justice system and also learn how as lawyers they may participate in successful and well-researched policy reform efforts.

517

Advanced Contracts 2
  • JD SRWP with add-on credit
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM Business Cert
  • Spring 20
  • Fall 20

Each course segment will consider in depth a foundational tenet of contract law, but applied to a new and modern fact pattern. For example, does an agreement to exchange one kidney for another (as in the increasingly common kidney paired donation) involve consideration? Is it void as against public policy? What is the obligation of airlines, hotels, and third party providers (such as Expedia) to honor "mistake fares" in an age when technology allows potentially millions of purchases before the offeror discovers the error?
We'll begin each segment with a modern fact pattern in which the law is unclear or in flux. We'll read the classic contracts cases and scholarly articles on point, with application to the new fact pattern in mind. Are the old doctrines still a good fit for the new world? Are the public policy rationales behind the law still relevant? What new considerations are present? Project assignments are designed to place students in roles of problems-solvers, policymakers, or judges considering real-life, current disputes. There will be substantial writing, teamwork, and oral presentations.

517W

Advanced Contracts, Writing Credit 1
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM Business Cert
  • Spring 20
  • Fall 20
  • Research paper, 25+ pages

While enrolled in LAW 517 Advanced Contracts, students may submit a significant research paper which would be eligible for satisfaction of the JD-ULWR.  LAW 517W must be added no later than the 7th week of class.

518

Constitutional Law II: Historical Cases and Contemporary Controversies 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • Fall 21
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 20+ pages
  • Class participation

Federal constitutional law is deeply shaped by its history. Many of our hot-button issues emerged in the early Republic: the specific questions are often different but the basic disagreements and arguments are startlingly modern.  The modern “canon” of US Supreme Court cases through which constitutional law is taught is an abstraction from this history.  Even if this is mostly unavoidable, the result is that in important ways our understanding of constitutional history, and thus of contemporary constitutional law as well, is distorted.  In this course we will look at a series of contemporary issues  - such as freedom of speech and religion, unenumerated rights, and federalism, through the lens provided by cases and controversies in the first century of the Constitution’s existence that for the most part have dropped out of our field of vision.  Our goal is not simply to develop a deeper understanding of the constitutional past but just as importantly to acquire fresh perspectives on contemporary law.

527

Access to Medicines: Intellectual Property and Global Public Health 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • IntllLLM IP Cert
  • PIPS elective
  • Spring 20
  • Final Exam, option
  • Research paper option, 25+ pages

This 2 credit seminar examines the law and policy governing the availability, price and development of medicines worldwide, providing an overview of the international legal frameworks, national regulations, and innovation policies affecting access to existing medicines and the development of future treatments for global health. It encourages students to critically examine current international law governing pharmaceutical innovation and to engage in efforts to improve incentives for the pharmaceutical sector to better meet global health needs. This seminar is open to non-law graduate students depending on space and prior experience. Students may take a final take-home exam or write a 30 page paper. 

Note: An additional credit is available for students writing a 45 page paper.  Students wishing to take this option should enroll in Law 527W Access to Medicines Writing Credit and must be enrolled no later than the 7th week of class.

527W

Access to Medicines Writing Credit 1
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntllLLM IP Cert
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • Add on credit

    While enrolled in Law 527 Access to Medicines: Intellectual Property and Global Public Health, students have the option to take an additional 1 credit if they wish to write a 45 page paper. *LAW 527W MUST be added no later than 7th week of class.*

    537

    Human Rights Advocacy 2
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing
    • PIPS elective
    • Fall 19
    • Fall 20
    • Fall 21
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Class participation

    This course critically assesses the field of human rights advocacy, its institutions, strategies, and key actors. It explores how domestic, regional, and global human rights agendas are set using international law frameworks; the ethical and accountability dilemmas that arise in human rights advocacy; and human rights advocacy concerning a range of actors, including governments, international institutions, and private actors. It addresses the role of human rights in social movements, including in addressing systemic racism, as well as the development of transnational human rights networks. It also considers issues such as how to resolve purported hierarchies and conflicts between internationally-guaranteed rights, efforts to decolonize the practice of human rights, and the ways in which populist and other forces also invoke human rights to further particular agendas. Drawing on case studies within the United States and abroad, it will examine core human rights advocacy tactics, such as fact-finding, litigation, standard-setting, indicators, and reporting, and consider the role of new technologies in human rights advocacy. In examining the global normative framework for human rights, this course focuses on how local, regional, and international struggles draw on, and adapt, the norms and tactics of human rights to achieve their objectives. Evaluation will be based on class participation and a final paper.

    This class is a pre-requisite or corequisite for Law 437 International Human Rights Clinic.

    544

    The Collective Action Constitution 3
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) writing
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing
    • PIPS elective
    • Fall 20
    • Reflective Writing
    • Class participation

    Collective action problems arise where every member of a group has a choice between alternatives, and if each member acts in a narrowly self-interested fashion or all members are unable to coordinate their actions, the outcome will be worse for all members by their own estimations than it will be if all or some of them choose another alternative.  Collective action problems are caused either by externalities (e.g., a prisoners’ dilemma), or by coordination difficulties (e.g., deciding which side of the road to drive on).  This seminar will examine the extent to which the United States Constitution can be understood as solving collective action problems that arise for the states and as empowering the states themselves and the federal government to solve such problems.  Topics will include:

    1. the number and importance of multi-state collective action problems both today and at the time of the creation of the Constitution;
    2. collective action theory in the social sciences;
    3. the promise and perils of relying on interstate compacts and other agreements to solve multi-state collective action problems;
    4. the necessity of federal power to solve such problems and a general examination of how Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution authorizes Congress to do so;
    5. the Interstate Commerce Clause and related structural principles (i.e., the anti-commandeering doctrine and the dormant commerce doctrine);
    6. the Taxing and Spending Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause;
    7. the many other parts of the Constitution that can be explained to a significant extent by the logic of collective action (e.g., the Foreign and Indian Commerce Clauses; Article I, Section 10; the Treaty Clause of Article II; certain heads of federal jurisdiction in Article III, especially diversity and suits between states; the Privileges and Immunities Clause and the Territories Clause, both of Article IV; Article V’s requirements for constitutional amendments; and Article VII’s requirements for ratification of the Constitution);
    8. the inability of the collective action theory of the Constitution to explain certain parts of the Constitution, especially the Reconstruction Amendments, which follow a different structural logic;
    9. various challenges to the theory (e.g., that partisan polarization and congressional dysfunction undermine federal power to solve collective action problems; that the theory threatens to collapse the text of the Constitution into its underlying purposes; that the theory limits federal power too much (according to legal liberals) or not enough (according to legal conservatives); and that claims about whether collective action is rational or likely to occur are historically contingent and normatively contestable; and
    10. why the theory should matter to judges, elected officials, academics in several disciplines, and engaged citizens.

    Readings will draw from The Federalist Papers and other Founding materials (e.g., the Articles of Confederation, Madison’s Vices memorandum, various letters of the Founders, the Virginia Plan, and the Constitution); book chapters (by, e.g., Akhil Amar, Jack Balkin, Daniel Farber, Jack Rakove, and Neil Siegel); law review articles (by, e.g., Robert Stern, Donald Regan, Steven Calabresi, Robert Bork, Robert Cooter, Neil Siegel, and Ernest Young); U.S. Supreme Court opinions from the Marshall Court to the present; and select draft chapters of my book manuscript.

    Students will be required to write a 30-page research paper on a topic related to the substance of the seminar, which may be used to fulfill the JD SRWP degree requirements, the LLM writing requirement, or the special writing requirement for JD/LLMs. 

    Grades will be based on the quality of students’ course participation (40%) and the quality of their research papers (60%).

    */

    545

    Urban Legal History 3
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing, option
    • Spring 20
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Class participation

    Urban Legal History is a research seminar which will focus on the legal issues relating to Durham's political, social, and economic development. The class will involve intensive study of primary and secondary materials, and will require students to produce substantial (45 page) research papers.

    546

    International Law of Armed Conflict 3
    • JD SRWP, option
    • JD elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • PIPS elective
    • Spring 21
    • Spring 20
    • Reflective Writing
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Oral presentation
    • Class participation

    This seminar will examine the international law of armed conflict, and it focuses on the jus in bello context. Students will consider the rationale for the key concepts of the law of armed conflict, and examine their practical application in various contexts. Case studies (contemporary and historical) will be examined in conjunction with the topics covered. This historical context for the law of armed conflict agreements, the status of conflicts, combatants, and civilians, targeting, rules of engagement, war crimes, are all included among the topics the class will address. Students will be encouraged to relate legal and interdisciplinary sources in order to better understand the multi-faceted interaction between law and war. There is no examination for this course but a 30-page paper (constituting 60% of the grade) is required on a legal topic chosen by the student and approved by the instructor. Students desiring to use the course paper to fulfill Substantial Research and Writing Project (SRWP) and possibly other writing requirements must obtain instructor. The remainder of the grade (40%) is based on the quality and frequency of class participation. Students should be aware that this course may include discussion and visual depictions (still and video) of armed conflict and other acts of extreme violence. The textbook for this course is Gary D. Solis's "The Law of Armed Conflict: International Humanitarian Law in War" (2nd ed., 2016). This course will only be offered in the spring.

    552

    Law and Governance in China 2
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) writing
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing
    • IntlLLM Business Cert
    • PIPS elective
    • Fall 21
    • Research paper option, 25+ pages
    • Research and/or analytical paper
    • Class participation

    Is there law in China? Does law matter in China? If yes, how does it work? The same as how law works in the U.S.? This seminar endeavors to understand law and governance in China. We will explore the following questions together: What is the constitutional and private legal foundation of Chinese economy? What roles has law played in the different stages of China’s market transition and different sectors of Chinese economy? China’s transformation from a planned economy to the arguably most capitalist country in the world, despite the absence of a well-functioning legal system, at least from the western perspective, raises numerous questions. Why do Chinese obey or not obey the law? How does law cope with a rapidly changing society? How does law interact with (both high and low) politics? This seminar covers both law on the books and law in action, emphasizes change and development in understanding law and governance, and takes China as a comparative case study to deepen our understanding of the fundamental nature of legal institutions.

    Class participation: 10%; 2 response papers (1 page per paper): 20%; final paper (18 pages minimum): 70%. JD students have an option to write a longer paper (30 pages minimum) including extensive research and original ideas to satisfy their writing requirements. Please seek the instructor's approval for this writing credit by the end of October. 

    555

    Law and Financial Anxiety 2
    • JD SRWP, option
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing, option
    • PIPS elective
    • Fall 20
    • Spring 22
    • Reflective Writing
    • Research paper option, 25+ pages
    • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 15-20 pages
    • Oral presentation
    • Class participation

    This course identifies and explores aspects of the American legal system that have effects – both negative and positive – on the ability of people and society to prevent the onset of financial anxiety and economic insecurity.   Set in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic but with analogues in laws that were enacted and implemented in other contexts,  the class will explore the meaning of financial anxiety and economic insecurity and discuss why they matter.  The class will then explore various laws. and their implementation by federal and state agencies, as relevant to financial anxiety and economic insecurity.   Subjects that bear upon financial anxiety that will be explored through the prism of law include housing finance, student loan finance, personal information security and climate security. The legislative response to the COVID-19 pandemic, in particular the CARES Act, will be analyzed in relation to how laws regarding financial anxiety and economic insecurity have been crafted by Congress in the last decade as a response to crises such as the financial and foreclosure crisis of 2008,   With these comparative laws and financial contexts, the class will engage in discussions about the extent to which the American legal system is equipped to handle the challenges of dealing with financial anxiety in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.  We will discuss financial anxiety in the larger context of consumer debt, agency and regulatory action, and legislative responsiveness as well as differential impacts related to debt, race and gender. The readings will come from law and non-law sources. The class will discuss issues relevant to the legal system and the study of business law and finance generally, including the use of data to illuminate legal problems, the role of lawyers and business actors, and the nature of modern policymaking.

    556

    Second Amendment: History, Theory, and Practice 2
    • JD SRWP, option
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing, option
    • PIPS elective
    • Spring 20
    • Fall 20
    • Fall 21

    The Supreme Court's decisions in District of Columbia v. Heller and McDonald v. City of Chicago have ushered in a whole new era of Second Amendment theory, litigation, and politics. Current events keep issues of firearms, gun violence, gun safety, and self-defense constantly in the news. This seminar will explore the Second Amendment and the various state constitutional analogs historically, theoretically, and pragmatically. Students will be introduced to the historical and public policy materials surrounding the Second Amendment, the regulatory environment concerning firearms, and the political and legal issues pertaining to firearm rights-enforcement and policy design. Evaluation for the seminar will be based on in-class participation and a choice between six short reaction papers or one thirty-page paper.

    558

    Foreign Anti-Bribery Law 2
    • JD SRWP with add-on credit
    • JD elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • LLMWriting option with additional credit
    • Fall 19
    • Fall 20
    • Fall 21
    • Reflective Writing
    • Oral presentation
    • Class participation

    Corruption is one of the major factors inhibiting economic development and undermining governmental legitimacy.  Developed governments generally enforce rules prohibiting domestic corruption, but have historically been less concerned with (and even encouraging of) foreign government corruption.  The United States passage of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in 1977, which prohibits covered entities from bribing foreign officials, represents a major shift in this policy.  In the last fifteen years, most other major economies and economic institutions (the IMF, the World Bank) have followed suit, although enforcement has been inconsistent.  This seminar will examine the origins and evolution of this effort to regulate firms' relationships with foreign government officials.  The seminar explores the history, economics, and policy behind anti-corruption efforts and the major challenges ahead.  The seminar will engage academic articles that address the economic effects of corruption, the politics of anti-corruption enforcement, the variation in current anti-bribery agreements (the UN Convention Against Corruption and the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention), and influence of these rules on foreign investment and trade.  The seminar is designed to be very participatory, with students leading discussion. 

    Students will be evaluated on a series of critique papers, leading a class discussion, and class participation. If students wish to write a paper on a topic related to the course materials, they may request the opportunity to complete an additional  two credit independent study.  A final paper cannot replace the critique papers.

    NOTE: An additional 2 credits are available for students who wish to write a longer paper in order to satisfy the JD or JD/LLM Upper-Level Writing Requirement. Students wishing to take this option should enroll in Law 558W Foreign Anti-Bribery Writing Credit. These credits will count towards the Independent Study Research Credit Limit (Rule 3-12) *LAW 558W MUST be added no later than 7thweek of class.*

    558W

    Foreign Anti-Bribery Law, Independent Study 2
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
    • IntlLLM writing
    • Fall 19
    • Fall 20
    • Fall 21
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Add on credit

    While enrolled in Law 558 Foreign Anti-Bribery Law, students have the option to take 2 additional credits in order to satisfy the JD or JD/LLM Writing Requirement. These credits will count towards the Independent Study Research Credit Limit (Rule 3-12). This section will meet in-person on schedule to be determined. The instructor will meet online with any student who prefers that. Students will be placed in groups of 2 or 3 students for a writing group. The instructor will meet with each writing group separately. *LAW 558W MUST be added no later than 4th week of class.*

    562

    Sentencing & Punishment 2
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing
    • PIPS elective
    • Fall 19
    • Fall 20
    • Fall 21
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Class participation

    This new seminar will focus on the process of imposing sentences in criminal cases, administering punishment, and attempting rehabilitation of convicted criminals. The course will first provide background regarding the purposes of punishment and the history of mandatory sentences, presumptive sentences, and sentencing guidelines, and focus on some of these issues in more detail through the use of a expert guest lecturers and a tour of the Federal Correctional Facility in Butner, NC. Students will be expected to participate meaningfully in the lectures, guest speakers and field trip, and produce a research paper on a related topic.

    574

    Lying and The Law of Questioning 1
    • JD SRWP with add-on credit
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing, option
    • Spring 20
    • Reflective Writing
    • Class participation

    This seminar will address the way in which legal institutions define and detect dishonesty. We will first discuss what is sometimes called “post-truth” discourse and the seeming suspension of fact-finding and truth-seeking in public life. The criminal justice system is both a natural habitat for dishonesty and the place where achieving accuracy is most important. Accordingly, we will use the context of investigations and trials to explore some larger themes about establishing factual baselines despite intense conflict. Topics will include liability for dishonest statements in investigations and testimony, interrogation practices, the problem of false confessions, incentivized witnesses, character and credibility, cross examination, storytelling at trial, and lie detection in the laboratory, courtroom, and popular culture. Readings will be posted on line and will include excerpts from law review articles and scholarly books, works of social science, investigative reporting, documentary footage, editorial commentary, and popular culture. The one-credit class will meet roughly every other Wednesday during the spring semester. There will be short writing assignments, and students will receive feedback on both written expression and class participation. Students who plan significant research projects on related topics may register for a second credit.

    574W

    Lying and The Law of Questioning, Writing Credit 1
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing, option
    • Spring 20
    • Add on credit

    While enrolled in Law 574 Lying and the Law of Questioning, students who plan significant research projects on related topics may register for a second credit in order to satisfy the JD Writing Requirement. *LAW 574W must be added no later than 7th week of class.*

    576

    Agency Law in a Changing Economy 2
    • JD SRWP, option
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM NY Bar
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM writing, option
    • IntlLLM Business Cert
    • Spring 20
    • Spring 21
    • Spring 22
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Oral presentation
    • Class participation

    Agency law encompasses the legal consequences of consensual relationships in which one person (the “principal”) manifests assent that another person (the “agent”) shall, subject to the principal’s right of control, have power to affect the principal’s legal relations through the agent’s acts and on the principal’s behalf. As the principal’s representative, an agent owes fiduciary duties to the principal. Agency doctrine applies to a wide range of relationships in which one person has legally-consequential power to represent another, populating the category, “agent,” with a variety of exemplars: lawyers, brokers in securities and other markets, officers of corporations and other legal entities, talent and literary agents, auction houses, and more. Usually, agency relationships contemplate three distinct persons: agent, principal, and third parties with whom the agent interacts, with legal consequences for all three. Agency law also governs the relationship between a principal and its agents, including its employees. The pervasiveness of agency means that its implications remain relevant despite changes in business structures and economies more generally.  This seminar covers the legal doctrines that make agency a distinct subject with in the law, in particular those differentiating agency from general contract and tort law. It also covers a number of contemporary examples in which agency doctrine may—or may not—apply with significant consequences. These may include the status of Uber drivers and other actors who perform services via platforms; the duties of commodities brokers, including merchants in financial derivatives products; the consequences of imputing an agent’s knowledge to the principal; agency as a vehicle for the imposition of vicarious liability; and the consequences for the agent and third party when a principal is undisclosed, unidentified, or undetermined. 
    The seminar will meet weekly with assigned readings. Each student will write a research paper on a topic to be chosen with the instructor’s consent and will make brief presentations to the seminar as work on the paper proceeds

    579W

    Mass Torts Writing Credit 1
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
      • Add on credit

      While enrolled in Law 579 Mass Torts, students have the option to take an additional 1 credit if they wish to expand the required 15 page paper to 30 pages in order to satisfy the JD Writing Requirement. *LAW 579W MUST be added no later than 7th week of class.*

      581

      FinTech Law and Policy 3
      • JD SRWP
      • JD elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM Business Cert
      • Fall 19
      • Fall 20
      • Research paper, 25+ pages
      • Oral presentation
      • Class participation

      In 2016, few people had ever heard of Bitcoin or blockchain, initial coin offerings were non-existent, and U.S. financial regulatory agencies had yet to react to the emergence of non-bank financial services providers. The FinTech industry has changed dramatically since then: Bitcoin has captured the public imagination and spawned new derivatives products, central banks are considering launching their own digital currency, you can apply for a mortgage on your smartphone, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency proposed a new kind of bank charter specifically for FinTech firms. While many have focused on the technologies underpinning the FinTech revolution, less attention has been placed on how these technologies fit within the current financial regulatory framework. Understanding this framework is critical to the long-term success of any FinTech startup. While technology startups in other sectors may predicate their business on breaking rules and ignoring regulations, such a strategy is sure to fail if deployed by a FinTech firm. This is because the financial industry is heavily regulated by multiple state and federal agencies that often have overlapping authority. Being a successful FinTech firm requires more than just great technology; it also requires an understanding of the laws and regulations applicable to your business.

      This course aims to provide you with that understanding. You will learn about the critical legal, regulatory, and policy issues associated with cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings, online lending, new payments and wealth management technologies, and financial account aggregators. In addition, you will learn how regulatory agencies in the U.S. are continually adjusting to the emergence of new financial technologies and how one specific agency, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, proposed a path for FinTech firms to become regulated banks. The course will also address the role FinTech has played during the pandemic; from FinTech lenders administering small business loans, to a Congressional proposal to administer stimulus payments through Federal Reserve digital wallets.  You will also learn the basics of how banks are regulated in the U.S.

      If you are unfamiliar with how these new financial technologies work, fear not. We will begin each new course section with a high-level overview of the underlying technology.

      Due to the pandemic, course content will be delivered online, but in person office hours will be held for those interested. Class participation will remain a required and graded component of the course. To help facilitate class participation, each student will be required to deliver a company profile presentation during the semester. In addition, each student, as part of a team, will deliver a presentation related to an assigned case study. Class participation will account for 40% of your grade and a final paper will make up the remaining 60%.

      582

      National Security Law 3
      • JD SRWP
      • JD elective
      • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing
      • PIPS elective
      • Fall 19
      • Fall 20
      • Fall 21
      • Research paper, 25+ pages
      • Oral presentation
      • Class participation

      This fall-only survey course is designed to provide students, particularly those with no background in the topic, with an overview of the American legal architecture related to the U.S. security enterprise.  The class will also examine related issues that arise "in the news."  It is aimed not only at students considering a career in government or the military, but also for those headed to private practice who appreciate that the U.S.’s $740 billion defense budget, along with $1.9 trillion in defense outlays worldwide, impact virtually all potential clients.

      The course includes analyzing the Constitutional structure governing national security matters, and the role played by the three branches of government (with special emphasis on Presidential power).  It will also examine governmental surveillance, the investigation and prosecution of national security cases, as well as First Amendment issues related to national security.  In addition, homeland security issues (to include the domestic use of the armed forces), security-based travel restrictions, public health emergencies, civil-military relations, and the impact of national security issues on business transactions will be reviewed.

      The textbook for this course will be Dycus, et al., National Security Law (7th ed., 2020) ISBN9781543806793 as well as the National Security Law and Counterterrorism Law 2021-2022 Supplement. Other materials may be provided as necessary.  The instructors will use episodes from their extensive careers in government to illustrate issues, and offer practical, real-world perspectives.

      There is one assigned time block for the course, but the structure of classes may vary, and students may be divided into sections, discussion groups, and panels.

      The course is expected to include guest speakers (to include possibly via Zoom). There may be occasional asynchronous content, including short lectures, podcasts, and some documentary footage. Students will have advance notice of all required participation elements.

      Given this is a course in national security, class instruction will likely include written, oral, and visual depictions of physical force and violence—and occasionally extreme representations of the same.

      There is no examination for this course, but a 30-page research paper (constituting 60% of the grade) is required on a topic chosen by the student and approved by the instructors.  With instructor approval, the course paper may fulfill the Substantial Research and Writing Project provided all SRWP requirements are met.  The remainder of the grade (40%) is based on the quality and frequency of class participation (which may include short papers).

      586

      Current Debates in Bankruptcy Law 2
      • JD SRWP, option
      • JD elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing, option
      • IntlLLM Business Cert
      • Spring 21
      • Spring 20
      • Reflective Writing
      • Research paper option, 25+ pages
      • Class participation

      Is bankruptcy broken? For some years, many academics and practitioners have argued that the nation's business and consumer bankruptcy systems are outdated or otherwise not fit for their intended purpose. The course will examine selected topics in bankruptcy law (but focusing most heavily on chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code). We will explore a selection of the most contentious current debates in bankruptcy law. Key reading materials will likely include recent major reports proposing reforms to bankruptcy law, as well as excerpts from the scholarship and recent Supreme Court cases. We will consider questions including: what is bankruptcy for? Is it simply a procedural remedy solely for enforcing whatever substantive rights parties might have outside bankruptcy, or an opportunity more fairly to redistribute assets (or losses) among stakeholders? Is bankruptcy special? Should be Bankruptcy Code be read like any other statute, or do we need special principles for bankruptcy law, and broad equitable powers for bankruptcy courts, to encourage businesses and consumers to reorganize? What protections should we give to consumers? Most consumer reorganizations are unsuccessful; should we respond by allowing bankruptcy more thoroughly to shield consumers from collection efforts, or do we prioritize creditors' efforts to get paid?

      For each of the topics considered, the general structure of the course will be to: (1) familiarize you with the relevant features of bankruptcy law; (2) examine critiques of current law and consider proposals for reform. The objective of the seminar is to provide insight and into and allow for debate of bankruptcy theory and policy; in the process, we will consider the extent to which abstract theories of bankruptcy hold up in the real world, and the topics we cover will include issues of pressing interest to current bankruptcy practitioners.

      Students will be required to participate in class discussions. Students may complete either a series of reflection papers examining the reading materials and topics discussed, or one  longer 25-30 page paper designed to satisfy the SRWP.

      Due to substantive overlap in material for the coming semester, students may not concurrently enroll in Law 288: Consumer Bankruptcy & Debt and Law 586: Current Debates in Bankruptcy Law. However, if you've taken one of the courses in a previous semester and wish to take the other, that will be permitted.

      588

      Investigating and Prosecuting National Security Cases 2
      • JD SRWP with add-on credit
      • JD elective
      • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing, option
      • PIPS elective
      • Spring 20
      • Spring 21
      • Reflective Writing
      • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
      • Class participation

      National security cases present unique challenges to prosecutors and defense attorneys. From the outset of an investigation, and before charges are brought, prosecutors and investigators must take into account a number of considerations, including coordination with the intelligence community and potential conflicts that may arise between law enforcement and intelligence gathering. After a case is charged, such cases frequently present other challenges, such as complying with discovery obligations while protecting classified information and obtaining testimony from foreign witnesses who may be beyond the reach of the U.S. government. This course will provide an in-depth examination of the unique issues that lawyers face in national security prosecutions and the substantive and procedural tools used to navigate those issues.  We will also examine the advantages and limitations of civilian prosecutions and consider the effectiveness of current procedures and criminal statutes in addressing modern national security threats.  An emphasis will be placed on case-specific examples and hypotheticals, drawing in part on the instructor’s experience and pending public cases.  The course will culminate in a simulation in which students are presented with a rapidly unfolding national security incident in which they are asked to address various hypotheticals at different stages of the case.

      Students will be expected to complete a final paper of 10-15 pages in length on a topic approved by the instructor.  Students who wish to use the paper to satisfy the JD ULWR should enroll in a 1 credit Independent Study with Professor Stansbury and will be expected to write a final paper of 25-30 pages in length.  The Independent Study will be graded on a credit/no-credit basis.

      590

      Risk Regulation in the US, Europe and Beyond 2
      • JD SRWP
      • JD elective
      • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing
      • IntlLLM Environ Cert
      • IntlLLM Business Cert
      • IntllLLM IP Cert
      • Fall 19
      • Fall 20
      • Fall 21
      • Research paper, 25+ pages
      • Class participation

      Faced with myriad health, safety, environmental, security and financial risks, how should societies respond?  This course studies the regulation of a wide array of risks, such as disease, food, drugs, medical care, biotechnology, chemicals, automobiles, air travel, drinking water, air pollution, energy, climate change, finance, violence, terrorism, emerging technologies, and extreme catastrophic risks. (Students may propose to research other risks as well.)

      Across these diverse contexts, the course focuses on how regulatory institutions deal with the challenges of risk assessment (technical expertise), risk perceptions (public concerns and values), priority-setting (which risks should be regulated most), risk management (including the debates over "precaution" versus benefit-cost analysis, and risk-risk tradeoffs such as countervailing harms and co-benefits), and ongoing evaluation and updating.  It examines the rules and institutions for risk regulation, including the roles of legislative, executive/administrative, and judicial functions; the challenge of fragmentation and integration; the roles of oversight bodies (such as judicial review by courts, and executive review by US OMB/OIRA and the EU RSB); and the potential for international regulatory cooperation.

      The course examines these issues through a comparative approach to risk regulation in the United States, Europe, and beyond (especially those countries of interest to the students in the course each year).  It examines the divergence, convergence, and exchange of ideas across regulatory systems; the causes of these patterns; the consequences of regulatory choices; and how regulatory systems can learn to do better.

      This is a research seminar, in which students discuss and debate in class (in person or online), while developing their own research.  We may also have some guest speakers.  Students' responsibilities in this course include active participation in class discussions, and writing a substantial research paper.  Students’ papers may take several approaches, such as analyzing a specific risk regulation; comparing regulation across countries; analyzing proposals to improve the regulatory system; or other related topics.

      This course is Law 590, cross-listed as Environ 733.01 and PubPol 891.01.  Graduate and professional students from outside the Law School should enroll via those Environ and PubPol course numbers, and may contact the Nicholas School registrar, Erika Lovelace, e.love@duke.edu , or the Sanford School registrar, Anita Lyon, anita.lyon@duke.edu , with any questions about enrollment.  (The Law School does not use “permission numbers.”)

      592

      Frontier AI & Robotics: Law & Ethics 3
      • JD SRWP, option
      • JD elective
      • LLM-LE (JD) elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing
      • IntlLLM Business Cert
      • IntllLLM IP Cert
      • Fall 19
      • Spring 20
      • Fall 20
      • Spring 21
      • Reflective Writing
      • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 20+ pages
      • In-class exercise
      • Class participation

      Robots, with us for several generations already, were long confined to narrow uses and trained users, assembling our vehicles and moving our products behind the scenes. In recent years, robotic tools have begun to step out of the back room and take center stage. Even more, these tools are fueled by constantly advancing artificial intelligence and machine learning tools that allow them to participate in the world of the mind as much as the world of muscle. Are we ready? Probably not. In order to capture the full opportunities and benefits of AI & robotics, surely our legal systems and ethical frameworks must evolve. We must find ways to ensure that human-robot interactions occur in ways that are safe and are consistent with our cultural values. We must take care that our policies and laws provide artificial intelligence tools with the direction we need without quashing or hindering the innovations that could improve our lives.

      The course will bring together three core areas: (1) law, (2) ethics, and (3) applied technology. Because frontier technologies challenge existing legal regimes and ethical frameworks, this course and its assigned project encourage law, ethics, and policy students to interact with networks of experts who are actively thinking about ethical technology development and with technology policy networks that explore the social implications of a world increasingly inclusive of AI.

      Beyond time spent for class preparation and in-class time, each student in Frontier AI & Robotics: Law & Ethics will be required to complete a substantial research-based Report that demonstrates a deep, research-based understanding of a topic about which the student shall become knowledgeable such that he/she could take part meaningfully in and contribute to present-day discussions of law, policy, and ethics in the topic area. This Report may qualify for the JD SRWP degree requirement or the International LLM writing requirement upon permission of the instructor.

      NO PRIOR EXPERIENCE WITH ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE OR TECHNOLOGY IS NEEDED FOR THIS COURSE.

      NOTES ON COVID:
      Coursework will be delivered entirely online. Nonetheless, the community that has always developed among the interdisciplinary participants (law, tech-ethics, public policy, etc.) of this course is one of its primary goals and benefits. As such:

      1.Online sessions will involve substantial participation in small breakout groups that allow for close collaboration on solving real-world problems; and

      2.Participation in synchronous sessions on Mondays from 2:00 to 4:45pm ET will remain a significant % of the final grade assessment; and

      NOTES ON COMPLEMENTARY COURSE

      Also available this semester is Practicing Law with AI and Big Data.

      593

      Sexuality and the Law 2
      • JD SRWP
      • JD elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing
      • PIPS elective
      • Fall 21
      • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
      • Midterm
      • Class participation

      Issues in the legal regulation of sexuality are among the most contested in US law today. Questions which either have been litigated in US courts in recent years, or are currently being litigated include whether: a) same-sex couples are entitled to the same marriage rights as heterosexual couples, b) women should have access to contraception or abortion, c) LGBTQ persons can rely on constitutional and statutory provisions providing for equal protection or nondiscrimination when availing of goods and services provided either by the government or by commercial entities, and d) LGBTQ persons are entitled to protection from employment discrimination. Assessing the merits of the arguments of parties involved in litigating these issues requires delving into the disparate areas of law which converge in these cases. These areas of law include the jurisprudences of liberty, privacy, equal protection, and the free exercise of religion, as well as issues concerning the extent of executive authority. This course will explore these issues through an examination of recent US jurisprudence, as well as statutory law and regulatory actions, as they pertain to LGBTQ rights and women’s reproductive rights at both the state and national levels. While the primary focus will be on developments in the US, the treatment of similar issues in selected foreign jurisdictions may be introduced occasionally to present alternative approaches.

      636

      Food, Agriculture and the Environment: Law & Policy 2
      • JD SRWP
      • JD elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing
      • IntlLLM Environ Cert
      • PIPS elective
      • Fall 19
      • Fall 20
      • Fall 21
      • Reflective Writing
      • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
      • Oral presentation
      • Class participation

      “Food,” “agriculture,” and the “environment” are distinct American mythologies tied to our most basic physical needs and imbued with our most significant cultural meanings. They are also irrevocably entwined. Most of us eat at least three times a day and, unless you are in extraordinary circumstances, those meals were produced within our national—and increasingly global—food and agriculture system. And it’s a system that causes startling environmental harms; think water and air pollution, pesticides, greenhouse gases, non-human animal welfare, deforestation, soil depletion, wetlands destruction, fisheries collapse, and on and on. Yet notions of “agricultural exceptionalism” exempt agriculture from many of our nation’s environmental laws.

      Undergirding the system are the people who help put food on our tables. The food and agriculture system depends on immigrants who toil as farmworkers and work the slaughterhouse lines even as it romanticizes the Jeffersonian ideal of the solitary yeoman. It co-opts the knowledge of Black, Indigenous and people of color under terms like “sustainable” and “regenerative” without reckoning with land theft, enslavement, or the patterns of discrimination and land loss that persist today.

      This course will survey how law and policy helped create and perpetuate the interrelated social, economic and environmental iniquities of our modern food and agriculture system. More optimistically, we will study how law and policy can address systemic issues and move us toward values of equity and environmental justice, conservation, restoration, community health and economic sustainability. And if you read Omnivore’s Dilemma and want to learn what the Farm Bill actually does, this is your chance.

      Course format and expectations: Students will be expected to stay up on all readings, participate in weekly discussion boards, prepare several small presentations and written assignments throughout the semester, and engage in the seminar each week. As a final assignment, each student will write a 10-15 page law or policy paper on a topic that they will develop in consultation with the rest of the class and the instructor. There will be an additional, optional opportunity to visit a local farm.

       

      640

      Independent Study 2
      • JD SRWP
      • JD elective
      • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
      • IntlLLM writing
        • Research paper, 25+ pages

        Per Rule 3-12, the Law School permits students to pursue independent study, approved and supervised by a member of the faculty. For more information, please visit https://law.duke.edu/academics/independentstudies/. With permission only.

         

        677

        Duke Law in DC: Rethinking Federal Regulation 4
        • JD SRWP
        • JD elective
        • PIPS elective
        • Fall 19
        • Fall 20
        • Fall 21

        This course is open to students participating in the Duke in DC integrated externship program (LAW 679: Duke Law in DC Externship). The Rethinking Federal Regulation course is a graded 4-credit weekly class that focuses on trends in regulatory philosophy, competing models for regulation, the nature of administrative rulemaking and enforcement of rules and regulations, and some of the sources of regulatory dysfunction. Students will develop critical analysis skills that are necessary to evaluate federal regulatory law, and will produce a 30-page final paper for the course. This course is open to second and third year law students, by permission only. For more information, please visit https://law.duke.edu/curriculum/dukedc/.

        707

        Statutory Interpretation Colloquium 2
        • JD SRWP
        • JD elective
        • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
        • IntlLLM writing, option
        • Spring 20
        • Reflective Writing
        • Research paper, 25+ pages

        The objective of the course is to introduce students to important issues concerning the theory and doctrine of statutory interpretation through exposure to cutting-edge legal scholarship. The colloquium will feature bi-weekly presentations of works-in-progress by leading scholars of statutory interpretation, legislation, and administrative law. In the week preceding each presentation, students will read and discuss foundational materials (a mix of academic commentary and case law) on topics related to the work-in-progress.

        Students may opt to prepare six short (5-10 page) papers in response to each work-in-progress, which would be due in advance of the presentation and used to stimulate discussion. Alternatively, students may write one longer research paper (roughly 30 pages) dealing with a topic of their choice related to the themes of the class. Students who take the latter option may use the colloquium to satisfy the upper-level writing requirement.

        713

        Corporate Social Responsibility and Social Entrepreneurship 2-3
        • JD SRWP, option
        • JD elective
        • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
        • IntlLLM writing, option
        • IntlLLM Business Cert
        • Spring 21
        • Fall 21
        • Final Exam
        • Research paper option, 25+ pages
        • Class participation

        In recent years, there has been growing pressure on profit-seeking corporations to address social problems, such as inequality and climate change. This class will critically evaluate the law and policies underlying recent developments that have allowed or required firms to take on a more active role in social and environmental issues. The class covers a range of topics, including the economic structure of nonprofit firms, the debate on corporate purpose and the profit-maximization norm, the rise of ESG investing, the proliferation of new legal hybrid forms, recent developments in the law of managerial fiduciary duties, the role of microfinance and fair trade in promoting development, and tax and subsidy policies to encourage corporations to pursue social goals, including the recent Opportunity Zone program. The inquiry will focus primarily on what types of structures best align investors’ interest in profit-making with different social purposes. 

        To be enrolled in the class, students must either take Business Association in the same semester, or have taken it in the past.  

        Student enrolled in the three-credit option need to write a research paper (in satisfaction of the JD Substantial Research and Writing Requirement or the International LLM Substantial Research Paper Requirement) in addition to doing the take-home exam.  The additional credit will count towards the Independent Study Research Credit Limit (Rule 3-12).

        The take-home exam will be comprised of questions relating to a real or imaginary business structure or transaction that involves social issues. The exam will be made available on December 6, and the deadline for submitting it will be December 19.

        714

        Coastal Resilience in the Face of Climate Change 2
        • JD SRWP, option
        • JD elective
        • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
        • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
        • IntlLLM writing, option
        • IntlLLM Environ Cert
        • PIPS elective
        • Spring 20
        • Spring 21
        • Research paper, 25+ pages
        • Group project(s)
        • Class participation

        This seminar will provide students an opportunity to engage closely with emerging law and policy issues associated with the need to increase coastal resilience in the face of climate change.  The recent experiences of both North and South Carolina with Hurricane Florence have highlighted the need for coastal communities to address a wide range of issues associated with climate change.  In addition to designing approaches to increase resilience when faced with storms and rising sea levels, these issues include: (1) information-gathering (via maps, drones, and scientific research about coastal/ocean processes); (2) law and policy refinements (via statutes, regulations, and guidance); and (3) possible litigation to develop useful common law doctrines relevant to the tidelands and the public trust.  Through the use of current cases and policy issues under debate in coastal communities, students will work together to research the most salient questions presented by these issues.  They will analyze relevant facts, laws, policies, socio-economic considerations, and local ordinances, and prepare proposed solutions to these questions in the form of advisory memos and recommendations.  

        717

        Comparative Constitutional Design 2
        • JD SRWP
        • JD elective
        • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
        • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
        • Spring 21
        • Research paper, 25+ pages

        Recent constitutional reconstructions in various parts of the world have called new attention to the problems of institutional design of political systems. In this course we will examine the design and implementation of national constitutions. In particular, we will address the following questions. What are the basic elements of constitutions? How do these elements differ across time, across region, and across regime type? What is the process by which states draft and implement constitutions? What models, theories, and writings have influenced the framers of constitutions?

        In the first half of the course, we will review the historical roots of constitutions and investigate their provisions and formal characteristics. We will also discuss the circumstances surrounding the drafting of several exemplary or noteworthy constitutions, from various regions of the world. We will then examine particular features of institutional design in depth. These will include judicial review, presidentialism vs. parliamentarism, federalism, and the relationship of the national legal system to international law.

        720

        Advanced Copyright: Digital Technologies 2
        • JD SRWP
        • JD elective
        • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
        • IntlLLM writing, option
        • IntllLLM IP Cert
        • Spring 20
        • Research paper, 25+ pages
        • Class participation

        This advanced copyright course will explore the legal and policy issues arising from the application of copyright law in the digital, networked environment. We will examine how the Copyright Act and traditional copyright doctrines have been adapted and applied by courts in an environment of rapid technological change, and what this means both for creators and users of creative works. The course will give particular attention to the scope and application of the author's various exclusive rights in a digital environment, doctrines of direct infringement and secondary liability as applied to Internet-based businesses and technologies, and questions relating to fair use, first sale, statutory licenses, and other defenses to infringement. We will explore in detail the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, including both the legal framework for the protection of technological protection measures and the safe harbor provisions protecting Internet Service Providers. Exploration of these and other issues will include detailed discussion of current legislative and related policy issues, major recent and ongoing litigation in the areas of Internet file sharing, cloud computing, and online video distribution, and new and emerging issues in the music, movie and interactive gaming sectors. This advanced course assumes a basic understanding of U.S. copyright law.

        Enrollment Pre- or Corequisite

        Intellectual Property or Copyright Law or Music's Copyright: A Historical, Incentives-Based, and Aesthetic Analysis of the Law of Music

        740

        Data and Democracy 2
        • JD SRWP, option
        • JD elective
        • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
        • Fall 19
        • Research paper, 25+ pages
        • Class participation

        Russian interference of the 2016 presidential election and the 2018 midterm elections have exposed unprecedented vulnerabilities: shortcomings to national cybersecurity policy and the failure to develop effective cyber threat deterrents; underregulation of social media platforms and Internet governance; how best to safeguard voter data and consumer data; and what federal oversight of election administration and voting systems may be necessary while still respecting federalism principles and state sovereignty. Multiple intelligence reports have described the interference as an “influence campaign” that blended covert cyber operations, and overt propaganda and misinformation operations. This seminar will explore how best to address the legal and policy challenges posed by the foreign interference in U.S. elections. The course will explore how policy and corporate reform efforts can be shaped by the emerging fields of cyber ethics and data ethics. The seminar will include a close examination of intelligence reports, the Special Counsel’s indictments, and other original source material to better understand the nature of foreign interference in US elections. It will also include an in-depth discussion of interdisciplinary work authored by experts in multiple fields: data and information science, ethics, privacy law, cybersecurity, national security, federalism, state and local governments, corporate governance, election law and voting rights, media and communications law, internet governance, civil rights and civil liberties, international relations, and political science and political theory. For graduate students and law students, regular participation will be supplemented by additional reading assignments and more in-depth research requirements, including an expectation to pursue original source research.

        Graduate and law students will also meet separately with the instructor throughout the semester to discuss the supplemental reading assignments and research progress, and will have an opportunity to present their research findings at the conclusion of the semester.  This course may be used by law students to satisfy the Substantial Research and Writing Project degree requirement.

        781

        Music's Copyright: A Historical, Incentives-Based, and Aesthetic Analysis of the Law of Music 3
        • JD SRWP
        • JD elective
        • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
        • IntlLLM writing, option
        • IntllLLM IP Cert
        • Spring 20
        • Fall 20
        • Reflective Writing
        • Research paper, 25+ pages
        • Oral presentation
        • Class participation

        This course will begin by exploring the historical structure of incentives in music and the changing economics of music production, including the preconditions for thinking of music as "property" and the gradual shift from patronage to a market-oriented system. It will then proceed to examine music's unusually complex and increasingly fraught relationship with copyright law. The fundamental notions of originality and illicit copying are at odds with both functional limitations and long-standing aesthetic practices in music, such as the long history of accepted borrowing. As a result, there is an unusual body of music-specific case law that features intriguing circuit splits, vigorous disputes about expert testimony and prior art, and specialized doctrinal issues. Students will gain an in-depth knowledge of these issues, and their application in prominent cases involving the songs "Blurred Lines," "Stairway to Heaven," and Katy Perry's "Dark Horse," as well as pending disputes over Lizzo's "Truth Hurts" and "Baby Shark," and then apply this knowledge in a mock trial. The course will also cover the complicated licensing schemes that attach to different uses of music, from traditional revenue streams to fresh disputes regarding royalties for new uses such as ringtones and streaming services. This portion will include a discussion of the new Music Modernization Act. Finally, the class will conclude with an in-depth examination of the ongoing debates about how both the law and business practices might adapt to the new musical forms (such as sampling and remixing) and business models (such as do-it-yourself distribution) enabled by digital technology. Throughout the semester, the course will include a special focus on current and ongoing disputes, issues, scholarship, and proposals.

        The writing for this course may be used to satisfy the JD Substantial Research and Writing Project Requirement.

        Course Credits

        Semester

        JD Course of Study

        JD/LLM in International & Comparative Law

        JD/LLM in Law & Entrepreneurship

        International LLM - 1 year

        Certificate in Public interest and Public Service Law

        Areas of Study & Practice