On June 2-3, 2014, Professor Cyra Akila Choudhury co-convened a two-day conference at Harvard Law School . The conference, Heterodox Approaches to Islamic Law and Policy brought senior and junior faculty from 20 countries to Harvard to present papers on Islamic criminal law, family law, finance, history, and jurisprudence. It was the first conference of its kind held in the United States to encourage heterodox approaches to studying Islamic law and policy and to explore methods of conducting research. Scholars presented both research from a critical perspective as well as more traditional research in Islamic law and policy. The conference was funded through a grant from the Institute of Global Law and Policy at Harvard Law School. It is expected that further collaborations and research will be undertaken by conference participants in future years. More about the conference can be found here.
Almost seven thousand miles away from the beautiful waters of Biscayne Bay flows the Kura River. For Miami’s locals and the thousands of visitors who enjoy the Bay’s waters, the Kura River may not have much meaning. But, for the people, environment and future of the South Caucasus mountain region – which includes Turkey, Georgia, Iran, Armenia and Azerbaijan – the Kura is one of the largest and most important sources of freshwater.
Today, the Kura River is at the center of an international effort to ensure that transboundary rivers are managed cooperatively. For most of the last century the river was governed by treaties between the USSR and Turkey, and the USSR and Iran. When the USSR fell in 1991, the Kura became an international watercourse between Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Iran. Since then it has not been managed by a bilateral or multilateral treaty.
As a scholar in international water law, Ryan Stoa, who serves as deputy director of the Global Water for Sustainability (GLOWS) program and is also a fellow in Water Law and Policy at FIU Law, was invited to Georgia to review a draft treaty between Georgia and Azerbaijan that would provide a framework for cooperation over the Kura river basin. Stoa was asked to provide his expertise to Georgian ministries and organizations involved in the negotiations.
At the table were the Ministry of the Environment, Ministry of Energy, Ministry of Agriculture, and Ministry of Foreign Affairs in collaboration with participation from the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).
“Like many tranbsoundary watercourses, there are a multitude of stakeholders and interested parties in the Kura River basin,” Stoa shared. “The challenge is to create an agreement that provides benefits to all stakeholders and can act as a mechanism for further collaboration.”
During Stoa’s visit, he discussed outstanding issues, the state of international water law, and the rights and duties that are imposed by the draft treaty.
“The agreement as it stands provides a workable mechanism for Georgia and Azerbaijan to cooperatively manage the river basin. After meeting with the various ministries and reviewing the draft agreement I’m confident the agreement provides tangible benefits to Georgia and the region. The next step is to build enough legal awareness and political capital that the political actors involved can seal the deal,” Stoa commented.
Assistant Dean Louis N. Schulze, Jr. recently presented a plenary address during the Association of Academic Support Educators annual conference which was held at Indiana University School of Law in Indianapolis. Nearly 130 law school faculty/administrators from around the country attended the conference. Dean Schulze’s presentation focused on the impact of FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) on law school education. More on the conference here.
Earlier this week, Professor Megan Fairlie delivered a lecture on Miranda and its International Counterparts at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg, Germany. The lecture was attended by some of the leading experts in Foreign and International Criminal Law, including the current director of the Institute, Prof. Dr. Hans-Joerg Albrecht, and director emeritus Prof. Dr. Albin Eser, a former judge at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague. More information on the talk is available here and a link to Professor Fairlie’s recent publication on the topic is available here.
Professor M.C. Mirow has been invited to serve on a plenary panel at the Fiftieth Conference of the Inter-American Bar Association (IABA) held later this month in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Launching the plenary session, the panel will address the topic of The development of national law by the study of comparative law. The IABA was founded in 1940 by national bar associations from many countries of the Americas, including the ABA. With offices in Washington, DC, the IABA consists of bar associations and individual attorneys from most countries of the hemisphere and several European countries.
“It is always satisfying to engage our profession and bridge the academy and our legal communities. I am so honored that the IABA asked me to speak; it is such an important international organization of lawyers and bar associations. I am glad FIU College of Law will be represented,” said Mirow.
Professor Manuel Gomez is featured in the spring 2014 edition of Focus Latin America magazine. Read the article, After Chavez the Challenges Continue here.
Professor Cyra Choudhury was quoted and her paper cited in the following article. Read it here.
Professor H. Scott Fingerhut was quoted in Saturday’s New York Daily News in defense of his client, Porter Fischer, the whistleblower in the Biogenesis anti-aging clinic steroid and performance-enhancing-drug scandal that resulted in the suspension of several Major League Baseball players – including the year-long suspension of New York Yankees 14-time All-Star and MVP third baseman Alex Rodriguez. Fischer is soon to be deposed by counsel for Reginald St. Fleur, who was arrested and charged with breaking into Fischer’s vehicle and stealing key documents. St. Fleur’s blood was found on the door handle of Fischer’s car.
Professor Fingerhut teaches Trial Advocacy, Pretrial Practice, and Criminal Procedure.
Professor M.C. Mirow has published a chapter entitled, “Teaching Latin American Legal History” in the book Teaching Legal History: Comparative Perspectives (London: Wildy, Simmonds & Hill, 2014) edited by Robert M. Jarvis. The book contains more than 60 essays by professors of legal history in the United States who were asked to describe methods and sources for teaching their sub-disciplines of legal history.
“I was honored to be asked to contribute to this important volume for legal historians. By talking about what we do in the classroom as legal historians, we are able to engage the community of teachers and scholars. I am certain this book will be a starting point for generations of new legal historians in the future,” Mirow said.
Associate Professor Charles C. Jalloh gave a keynote speech at the 2014 international conference, Africans and Hague Justice: Realities and Perceptions of the International Criminal Court in Africa which was held May 23-24. Professor Jalloh’s paper, “Africa, the Security Council and the International Criminal Court,” examined, among other things, the negative perceptions of U.S. policy as a permanent member of the Security Council with veto power on the International Criminal Court’s credibility in Africa. It provoked vigorous discussions afterwards. This interdisciplinary conference was convened by The Hague University of Applied Sciences (The Netherlands).
The full program is available here.