Conferences and Special Events

The Center for the Study of Law and Society sponsors conferences and workshops for the dissemination and discussion of research, the exploration of new ideas for research, and the promotion of new multidisciplinary and cross-national collaborations.


Conferences, Workshops & Special Events 2014-15

CSLS Book Event

(co-sponsored with Jurisprudence and Social Policy and the Carceral Geographies Course Thread)

Jonathan Simon
Adrian A. Kragan Professor of Law and
Director, Center for the Study of Law and Society, UC Berkeley

speaking on his recent book from The New Press (2014)

Mass Incarceration on Trial

Wednesday, September 17, 2014     4:30-6:00p
Goldberg Room, Simon Hall, Berkeley Law

Moderated by Calvin Morrill
Associate Dean, Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program
Stefan A. Riesenfeld Professor of Law and Professor of Sociology

With responses by Sharon Dolovich, Professor of Law, UCLA;
Rebecca McLennan, Associate Professor of History, UC Berkeley
Anthony Platt, Professor Emeritus, CSU-Sacramento

CSLS Speaker Event

Lynette Chua
Assistant Professor of Law
National University of Singapore

"Myanmar's Sexual Minority Rights Movement and
the Cultural Processes of Translating and Mobilizing Human Rights"

Monday, September 22, 2014
4-5:15p.    Reception Follows
Selznick Seminar Room, 2240 Piedmont Ave., Berkeley

This event is co-sponsored by the Center for the Study of Law and Society, the Institute for the Study of Societal Issues, the Center for Southeast Asia Studies, and the Department of Gender and Women's Studies.


Conferences, Workshops & Special Events 2013-14


"Breaking Barriers, Building Community: 35 years of Training Social Change Scholars"

Co-sponsored by Division of Equity and Inclusion; Departments of Sociology, Anthropology,
and Ethnic Studies; College of Environmental Design; School of Social Welfare;
Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program; Center for the Study of Law and Society;
Center for Race and Gender; American Cultures; and The Graduate School of Education

Friday, May 2, 2014     8:30am - 4:30pm

Alumni Hall, 2537 Haste St.
(between Telegraph Ave. and Bowditch St.)

What does it mean to be a social change scholar? What is the relevancy of the academy to achieving social justice? How can the academy be (re)made to reflect the diversity and complexity of society, where students and communities have active voices and roles in shaping the pedagogy, research approaches, and policy production of the research university?

(Register here by April 27 for a free lunch and the program)

Workshop and Reception

University of Vienna

of 'Natural Lawfare' in the American Declaration of Independence (1776)"

Thursday, April 24, 2014  5:30-7:30p
7415 Dwinelle Hall

At the founding of the American republic there is an uncanny co presence of natural rights, slavery, and colony. Are the latter just a matter of historical coincidence or does it reflect a more intricate correlation between the liberal political principles of the Enlightenment and the oppressive state of human enslavement and colonialism than hitherto presumed? In other words, is it possible that the very principle of natural rights is in some ways conducive to the justification of oppression? First, how can the American Declaration of Independence (1776), a paradigmatic document of colonial resistance that successfully underpinned the American colonies’ striving for independence from the motherland Great Britain in turn legitimize colonial conquest in the name of natural rights? Hence what is puzzling is the fact that this result comes about despite the presumption of the equal human nature of Native Americans. Second, how can one explain the shift from Jefferson’s plea for the “most sacred rights of life & liberty” of African slaves in his original rough draft of the DI to his pessimism as to an ‘inevitable’ race-war, and therefore to the supposedly legitimate criminalizing of blacks in the final draft of the DI? This paper intends to show that more than a coincidental co-presence of rights and oppression is at work. By tracing the speech-act- performative maneuvers of naturalization and dehistoricization, it attempts to demonstrate how the conceptual and philosophical tension of the principles of rights (“laws of nature” and “nature’s God”) turns the terrible exceptions of slavery and colony into American specific justifications of “natural lawfare.”

We will circulate the paper to those interested. The paper should be read in advance. The presenter will speak for 10 or 15 minutes, followed by discussion.

Co-sponsored by CSLS, the Department of Rhetoric, and the Townsend Center Working Group on Law and Contemporary Theory.

Workshop and Reception


Professor of American Literature and Culture
University of Osnabruck, Germany

"WHO OWNS UNCLE TOM'S CABIN?  On Religion, Property and Personhood"

Thursday, April 17, 2014   5:30-7:30p
7415 Dwinelle Hall

Peter Schneck received his PhD from the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies at the Free University of Berlin, and presently holds the professorship for American Literature and Culture at the University of Osnabruck, where he directs the Osnabruck Summer Institute on the Cultural Study of the Law (OSI).

We will circulate the paper to those interested. (Please email to request the paper) The paper should be read in advance.  The presenter will speak for 10 to 15 minutes, followed by discussion.

Co-sponsored by CSLS, the Department of Rhetoric, and the Townsend Center Working Group on Law and Contemporary Theory.

GALA/CSLS Speaker Event

(co-sponsored with the Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice)


Assistant Professor of Psychology, U.C. Berkeley

"A Conversation about Neuroscience and the Law"

Thursday, April 17     12:30-1:55p
(light lunch served at 12noon)

Selznick Seminar Room, 2240 Piedmont Avenue

CSLS Book Event

(co-sponsored with the Institute for the Study of Societal Issues
and the Carceral Geographies Course Thread)

speaking on

with Responses by

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014   4-5:30p

Wildavsky Room, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Mass incarceration in the United States is the largest, most luctrative, most racialized, and most destructive social experiment in recent history.  Only the men and women who live behind bars are fully invested in the truth, are willing and able to bear witness to the state of our prisons, and are subjects of sufficient public fascination to be heard by a broad public.

This talk will present Fourth City: Essays from the Prison in America, a collection of 71 essays from writers incarcerated in 27 American states. Fourth City is the largest collection to date of first-person witness to how the American prison is experienced by those living inside it. Fourth City presents the prison population as it sees itself: not as regrettable abstraction or liability of the neoliberal state, but as an extant community of 2.26 million living under hostile supervision.

Doran Larson is Professor of English at Hamilton College. He has led The Writing Workshop inside Attica Correctional Facility since 2006, and is the founder of two college-in-prison programs. He publishes essays on prison writing and teaching, and edited a special issue of Studies in Law, Politics, and Society (UK), in which incarcerated writers, prison teachers, and prison critics imagine what the American prison would look like if transformed into a socially constructive institution.


ISSI's Center for Research on Social Change presents:

Associate Professor of History, UCLS

"Not Imprisonment in the Legal Sense":
The Invention of Immigrant Detention: 1892-1896 

with Leti Volpp as respondent

Thursday, March 20, 2014    3:30-5:00p

Warren Room, Simon Hall (Room295)

Co-sponsored by The Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice,
Center for the Study of Law and Society, Carceral Geographies Course Thread,
Graduate Students de La Raza, Sociology Department, Ethnic Studies Department,
and Department of History

Conversations in Law and Society

ROBERT A. KAGAN interviewed by Calvin Morrill

March 14, 2014   2-3:30pm

140 Boalt Hall



speaking on

"The Witch Hunt Narrative" in Conversation with Catharine McKinnon

March 6, 2014   4:30-5:30pm

100 Boalt Hall

Special Presentation

(co-sponsored with the Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice)

Mark Halsey
Professor and ARC Future Fellow
Intergeneratational Incarceration Project

Flinders University Law School, Adelaide, South Australia

Monday, November 25, 2013   3:30-5pm
Warren Room, 295 Simon Hall, Berkeley Law
(Refreshments will be served)

"Intergenerational Incarceration:  Results of a Statewide Survey"

This presentation highlights the key results of a survey aimed at capturing the "depth" of intergenerational incarceration in one Australian state. Results are presented in accordance with respondents' age, gender, Indigenous status, total length of custodial time, and like factors.  A critical analysis of the social, political and economic issues appearing to impact intergenerational incarceration is also engaged.  The presentation concludes with a brief overview of how these results (will) inform the second (interview- based) stage of the research.

Mark Halsey has published widely on such issues as the lived experience of imprisonment and the challenges of post-release life. He is in the final stages of a 10-year study of the desistance process as played out in the lives of young male (ex)prisoners and their nominated significant others.

Special Seminar

David M. Trubek


"Scholars in Self-Estrangement"

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 3:30-5p.m.
in Boalt Room 141

Forty years after the famous critique of law and development "Scholars in Self-Estrangement," Trubek rejoins the field, re-visits Brazil in one new article, reflects on the 1974 critique in another, and invites faculty, scholars and students to engage with his new ideas and reflections. David M. Trubek has played major roles in the fields of law and development, globalization, law and society, and critical legal theory for decades.

Please email to RSVP and receive readings.

November 6-8, Dave and Louise Trubek will be honored guests of the Center for the Study of Law and Society, with several public appearances, culminating in A Conversation in Law and Society - David Trubek & Louise Trubek in conversation with Jonathan Simon, in the afternoon of Friday, November 8 at 2-3:30p in Boalt 140.

David M. Trubek is Voss-Bascom Professor of Law Emeritus at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Senior Research Fellow at Harvard Law School.  He received the Law & Society Association's Kalven Prize in 2002 and was appointed Chevalier des Palmes Academiques by the French Government in recognition of his work on globalization. He has written extensively on international and comparative law, on the role of law in development, human rights, European integration, the changing role of the legal profession, and the impact of globalization on legal systems and social protection schemes, as well as on critical legal theory, the sociology of law, and civil procedure.  He is co-Director of GLEE, the Project on Globalization, Lawyers, and Emerging Economies.

Colloquium and Reception

Leif Dahlberg
Associate Professor, School of Computer Science and Communications
Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm

"Factoring Out Justice: Imaginaries of Community, Law and the Political
in Ambrogio Lorenzetti and Niccolo Machiavelli"

Wednesday, September 11, 2013  5:10-6:30p
7415 Dwinelle Hall

Conferences, Workshops & Special Events 2012-2013

A Lunchtime Talk

Lia Kent
Research Fellow, State, Society and Governance in Melanesia Program,
Australia National University

Friday, May 17, 2013  12-1:00p
2850 Telegraph Avenue, Conference Room #351

"The Dynamics of Transitional Justice:
International Models and Local Realities in East Timor

Transitional justice mechanisms have become firmly entrenched as part of the United Nations "tool-kit" for successful post-conflict recovery, promoted as a means of assisting both individuals and societies to "come to terms" with complex legacies of violence. Focusing on a case study of East Timor, this presentation interrogates these claims. Drawing on fieldwork conducted in 2007 and 2008, I chart the complex interplay between international transitional justice narratives promoted by the United Nations, national narratives of justice and nation-building promoted by East Timor’s political elite, and local narratives of injustice promoted by East Timorese survivors. I argue that the transitional justice process has been unable to fully respond to local expectations of justice, which are culturally and historically situated. Nonetheless, it has contributed to an ongoing, locally grounded, conversation about how best to ‘deal with the past’. The dynamic nature of these developments suggests that transitional justice might best be understood as a continuing and productive interaction between multiple actors with varying degrees of political power.

CSLS Roundtable Discussion

Mark Fathi Massoud
Assistant Professor in the Politics Department
and Legal Studies Program, UC, Santa Cruz
Thursday, April 25, 2013 3:30-4:45p
Selznick Seminar Room, 2240 Piedmont Avenue

Law's Fragile State: Colonial, Authoritarian, and Humanitarian Legacies in Sudan
(forthcoming from Cambridge University Press)

Co-sponsored by Rachel Stern’s class on Judicial Politics in Non-Democracies
and the Institute for East Asian Studies

Berkeley Workshop on Law:  A Socio-Legal Perspective

(with funding from James Wright, editor-in-chief, International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Second Edition, and Elsevier Publishing Company)

Friday, March 1, 2013, 2-5p

CSLS Executive Director Rosann Greenspan is serving as co-editor, with fellow JSP graduate Professor Kay Levine of Emory Law School, of the Section on Law of the International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences (IESBS), Second Edition.  They have commissioned some 140 chapters by leading US and international scholars; when completed in 2015, the Encyclopedia will incorporate over 5,000 entries.  Lauren Edelman and Marc Galanter, who co-edited the Law Section for the 1st Edition (published 2001), were invited to prepare a major overview chapter for the 2d edition, which they have titled "Law: A Socio-Legal Perspective."  This chapter will replace the chapter "Law: Overview" from the 1st edition.   The authors  proposed convening a group of Bay Area law and society "informants"to react to the original text and discuss new developments in law and society that will inform the new article. Fifteen scholars gathered in the Philip Selznick Seminar Room to participate in the workshop.

Special Lecture by John and Jean Comaroff

Friday, February 22, 2013, 12:15-1:30p
140 Boalt Hall


Imposture of various kinds has become strikingly common in post-apartheid South Africa, which is increasingly afflicted by, among other things, identity theft, plagiarism, fakery, even counterfeit crime. Taking a case – the alleged impersonation of a famous Zulu musician, deceased two years ago – this lecture asks why this has happened, what the resort to imposture tells us about postcolonial self-fashioning, about personhood under contemporary economic, social, and cultural conditions, and about the difficulties faced by the law in dealing with twenty-first century imposture.

Special Seminar and Dinner for JSP Students and BELS Fellows

Thursday, February 21, 2013, 5:30-8p.

Jean Comaroff
Professor of African and African and American Studies and of Anthropology
and Oppenheimer Fellow in African Studies, Harvard University
John Comaroff
Professor of African and African and American Studies and of Anthropology
and Oppenheimer Fellow in African Studies, Harvard University


Walter Benjamin famously insisted that modern police wielded a "ghostly," all-pervasive violence, called upon at points where the state was unable to govern by legal means. Yet many African postcolonies are haunted by a different specter: the waning efficacy of enforcement, the ambiguity of authority, and the apparent abandonment of subjects by the state. This paper, part of a larger work entitled "Policing the Postcolony," examines the problematic relation of law, theology, and sovereignty in contemporary African polities, especially in post-apartheid South Africa. It focuses on the "metaphysics of disorder" that is palpable in popular culture here, and the kinds of forensic fetishes that seem to be conjured in its wake.

Dedication of the Sanford H. Kadish Library
Reception to Honor Sandy Kadish

Monday, November 5, 2012, 4-5pm
2240 Piedmont Avenue

Since arriving on the Berkeley campus in 1964, Sanford H. Kadish has been associated with the Center for the Study of Law and Society (founded 3 years earlier by Philip Selznick).  In 1976, as Dean of Boalt Hall Law School, Sandy co-founded the path-breaking Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program with Philip Selznick.  The first PhD students arrived in 1978; next fall we will welcome the 35th class of JSP students. On October 5, 2012, Sandy honored us with a wonderful interview (conducted by David Lieberman) in the CSLS Conversations in Law and Society Series in which he described the early days at the Center and the founding of JSP.  The videotape will soon be available on the web. Join us as we raise a glass to our friend and founder Sandy Kadish, enjoy some hors d’oeuvres, and admire the beautiful new sign over the entrance to the Sanford H. Kadish Library.


Conferences, Workshops & Special Events 2011-2012


On the Interpay Between Social Sciences and Law Schools:
Visions, Challenges and Trajectories


Thursday, May 3rd-Friday, May 4th



The Future of Law and Society

A Conference on the Occasion of the 50th Anniversary
Of the Center for the Study of Law and Society
University of California, Berkeley

November 3-4. 2011
Bancroft Hotel


Conferences, Workshops & Special Events 2009-2011



Date: February 4, 2010, 12:30-1:45p
Location: Goldberg Room
Title: "Ricci v. the City of New Haven"

Bay Area Law and Society Scholars (BALSS)

The Balss meeting was held in conjuction with Conversations in Law and Society
Friday, April 23, 2010
Location: 140 Boalt Hall
Reception in CSLS Library, 2240 Piedmont Avenue.

Constitution Day Colloquium

(Program flier)
Civil Rights and Civil Liberties:  The Constitution in Crisis Times
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Program 12:15p - 1:50p with a light lunch available 11:45a - 12:15p
Location:  Boalt 110

Constitution Day itself is September 17th.  This colloquium on September 15th is part of a week of events in celebration of the Constitution of the United States.   The Welcome will  be given by Calvin Morrill, the Director at the Center for the Study of Law and Society.  The panel will be chaired by Malcolm Feeley.  The first of two papers to be presented is by Willoughby Anderson, Law Clerk, Chambers of Senior Judge John T. Nixon, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Tennessee, and is entitled "Constitutional Crisis in Birmingham: the Civil Rights Movement and Beyond." The discussant will be Goodwin Liu, Berkeley Law.  The second paper is "Martial Law and Military Courts: Hawaii in WWII" and will be presented by Harry Scheiber and Jane Scheiber, UC Berkeley.  The discussant for this paper is Gordon Silverstein, UC Berkeley.


Conferences, Workshops & Special Events 2008-2009



Friday, April 24, 2009
(website) (info for presenters)

Empirical Legal Studies is often associated with sophisticated quantitative work and less often associated with theory.  This conference is designed to highlight the ways in which empirical legal studies (both quantitative and qualitative) can and should be integrated with theoretical work.  The conference, building on a long tradition of empirical legal studies at Berkeley, will show how empirical legal studies can be grounded in socio-legal theory and can be used to generate, test, and elaborate socio-legal theory. Invited speakers from both the legal academy and the social sciences will foster a productive dialog about the intersection of empirical legal studies and law and social science theory.  The conference will consist of three panels scheduled consecutively to allow for full participation.  We also hope to foster connections across disciplines and among scholars in this area that will continue long after this initial conference.The conference will feature a Keynote Address by Richard Lempert, Stein Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of Law and Sociology at the University of Michigan and former director of the Social and Behavioral Sciences Division at the National Science Foundation.  Panelists and discussants include:  Katherine Albiston (UC Berkeley), Kitty Calavita (UC Irvine), Lauren Edelman (UC Berkeley), Yuval Feldman (Bar Ilan University), Tristin Green (Seton Hall), John Hagan (Northwestern), Daniel Ho (Stanford), Valerie Jenness (UC Irvine), Alexandra Kalev (Arizona), Stephanie Lindquist (Vanderbilt), Orly Lobel (University of San Diego),Calvin Morrill (UC Irvine),  Anne Joseph O'Connell (UC Berkeley), Kevin Quinn (Harvard), Margo Schlanger (Washington University), Mark Suchman (Brown University), Christopher Zorn (Pennsylvania State). 


(Program) (Presenter Information) (Photo Gallery)
Friday, September 19, 2008

Beginning with the publication of Regulatory Justice in 1974, Bob Kagan has made far-reaching contributions to the study of courts, regulatory decision-making, and the legal profession. Richly comparative, his work spans disciplinary and national boundaries. Through detailed empirical observation Kagan's writings shed new light on the day-to-day reality of legal actors and institutions. His work has been particularly influential in the study of regulation, where his studies have shaped contemporary understandings of what constitutes reasonable and effective regulation. His insights have brought attention to the special problems of the American legal order, where he argues that an exceptionally adversarial system, while very useful in some respects, diminishes the accountability, efficiency and fairness of the U.S. system. Bob Kagan's work is original and provocative. In the law and society tradition, Bob's empirical studies get to the core of the law in action. And in the jurisprudence and social policy tradition, he draws normative implications that challenge scholars and policymakers alike to seek reason and justice in law. Inspired by this model and his generous mentorship, scores of graduate students have sought to follow in his path. The sessions will include: 1) Regulatory Enforcement and Compliance, 2) Comparative Legal Institutions, and 3) Adversarial Legalism. In the final session -- The Virtues and Vices of Legalism -- Malcolm Feeley will take the long view of Bob's work and the themes that weave throughout, and Bob will be invited to respond.

It is anticipated that the papers will be published as an edited volume as soon as possible after the conference.
Organizing Committee: Malcolm M. Feeley (Chair), Lauren Edelman, Rosann Greenspan, Tom Burke (Wellesley College), Noga Morag-Levine (Michigan State-College of Law)


Stanford Law School will host the next Bay Area Law and Society Scholars (BALSS) gathering on Wednesday, October 29, 2008.

Stanford Law School will host the next Bay Area Law and Society Scholars (BALSS) gathering on Wednesday, October 29, 2008.


November 7-8, 2008

During 2007-2008 the Center for the Study of Law and Society hosted a year-long seminar funded by an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar Grant. Entitled "The Dilemmas of Judicial Power in Comparative Perspective, the seminar was administered by Gordon Silverstein (Political Science), Principal Investigator, and Robert A. Kagan (Political Science and Law), Malcolm F. Feeley (Jurisprudence and Social Policy, School of Law) and Martin Shapiro (Law), co-prinicipal investigators.  Also assisting were Diana Kapiszewski (Post-doctoral Fellow), Manoj Mate (Political Science), and Pablo Rueda (Jurisprudence and Social Policy).   A complete calendar of speakers and participants is available on the Mellon-Sawyer Seminar website.November 7-8, 2008During 2007-2008 the Center for the Study of Law and Society hosted a year-long seminar funded by an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar Grant. Entitled "The Dilemmas of Judicial Power in Comparative Perspective, the seminar was administered by Gordon Silverstein (Political Science), Principal Investigator, and Robert A. Kagan (Political Science and Law), Malcolm F. Feeley (Jurisprudence and Social Policy, School of Law) and Martin Shapiro (Law), co-prinicipal investigators.  Also assisting were Diana Kapiszewski (Post-doctoral Fellow), Manoj Mate (Political Science), and Pablo Rueda (Jurisprudence and Social Policy).   A of speakers and participants is available on the Mellon-Sawyer Seminar website.

All the Sawyer Seminar speakers and participants will be returning for the Plenary Conference on Friday, November 7 and Saturday, November 8, where they will review and discuss the papers presented during the seminar.  Authors will revise their papers in light of the theoretical framework developed through an iterative process and contribute them to a volume for publication. The Plenary Conference website has links to the current versions of the papers.


November 18, 2008
(program front, back)

Philip Selznick, Professor of Law and Sociology, Emeritus; Founding Director of the Center for the Study of Law and Society; Founding Chair of the Jurisprudence and Social Policy (JSP) Program; and Former Chair of the Department of Sociology, in his 90th year, has just published a new book with Stanford University, Press, A HUMANIST SCIENCE:  VALUES AND IDEALS IN SOCIAL INQUIRY. In honor of Philip, and in celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the JSP Program he envisioned and established, the Center for the Study of Law and Society and the Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program will host a reception and discussion, on Tuesday, November 18th, 2008 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the Goldberg Room (Simon Hall).  Marianne Constable (U.C. Berkeley), Sanford Kadish (U.C. Berkeley), Martin Krygier (University of New South Wales), and Philippe Nonet (U.C. Berkeley) will provide comments, followed by a reply by Philip Selznick.

Conferences, Workshops, and Special Events 2007-2008

The Center for the Study of Law and Society co-sponsored the 2008 BCLT Privacy Lecture by David Cole of Georgetown University, with responses by John Yoo and David Kris, on April 14, 2008. The topic of Professor Cole's lecture was: "Would You Rather Be on Closed Circuit TV or in Jail ? Trade-offs between Liberty and Privacy in the U.S. and the U.K."


On October 17, 2007, Bay area law and society scholars gathered for an evening of conversation, starting with a brief presentation by Lawrence Friedman of Stanford Law School, long a leading light in our field.

The second BALSS gathering took place on March 19, 2008 at UC Hastings (200 McAllister Street, San Francisco). After an informal reception, the group gathered to discuss Hiring and Career Choices in Law and Society, featuring: Nell Newton (Dean and Chancellor, UC Hastings College of the Law) and Jonathan Simon (Chair, JSP Program, and Associate Dean, Boalt School of Law, UC Berkeley). David Levine (UC Hastings College of the Law) facilitated the discussion.

Stanford Law School will host the next Bay Area Law and Society Scholars (BALSS) gathering in Fall 2008.

CSLS has launched a new series of methodology seminars presenting aspects of empirical research methods by and for legal and sociolegal scholars. To go to the webpage of any of the workshops in the mini-series, click on the seminar title below. There you will find the videos of each 3-hour seminar; handouts; powerpoint slides; bibliographies; and other course materials.

The first seminar was a Workshop in Systematic Qualitative Fieldwork led by Calvin Morrill of UC Irvine on Tuesday, September 18, 2007, 9 a.m. to noon, in the JSP Seminar Room.

The second seminar was a Workshop in Historical-Comparative Methods led by Robin Stryker of the University of Minnesota, on Tuesday, October 23, 2007, 9 a.m. to noon, in the JSP Seminar Room.

The third seminar was an Introduction to Survey Research led by Tom Piazza of U.C. Berkeley's Survey Research Center, on Thursday, February 21, 2008, 9 a.m. to noon, in the JSP Seminar Room.

The fourth seminar, The Art and Science of Interviewing, led by Kristin Luker, Elizabeth Josselyn Boalt Professor of Law and Professor of Sociology, U.C. Berkeley, took place on Thursday, April 10, 2008, 9 a.m. to noon, in the JSP Seminar Room.

Jiri Priban, Professor of Law at Cardiff University, University of Wales, presented a public lecture on Wednesday, September 26, 2007. The event was co-sponsored by the Institute of Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies, the Center for the Study of Law and Society, and the Institute of European Studies. 

Recent Conferences and Workshops


The Center for the Study of Law and Society is pleased to be a co-sponsor of Law and the Emotions: New Directions in Scholarship, February 8-9, 2007.
Conference Website



Friday, September 15th, 2006
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. / Boalt Hall School of Law
Conference Website
Conference Photos by James Block
Conference Photos by Victoria Woeste
David Lieberman presents signed poster to Harry Scheiber


Friday, Saturday, March 11-12, 2005.
Doubletree Hotel / Berkeley, CAFriday, Saturday, March 11-12, 2005.Doubletree Hotel / Berkeley, CA

A highlight of the year’s activities was the highly successful, inaugural West Coast Law and Society Retreat, initiated by CSLS Director Lauren Edelman, and organized and hosted by CSLS, with major funding from Boalt Hall, as well as the Vice Chancellor for Research, the Dean of Social Sciences, Stanford Law School and the University of Washington. Some 80 invited scholars in a range of academic fields from about 20 universities and law schools participated in intensive discussions about the state of sociolegal scholarship in a variety of substantive areas, as well as about teaching law and society in undergraduate, graduate and law school programs.


Thursday, April 8, 2004.
Jack Katz, Professor of Sociology, UCLA


March 6, 2003
(see agenda)

March 6, 2003

Martin Shapiro has profoundly shaped the study of public law in the United States His work has influenced the study of American constitutional and administrative law, the politics of European integration, and comparative constitutional law. His 1981 book Courts was described (by Sam Krislov) as "the most significant single contribution in the field" of public law in political science. He is the recent recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Law and Courts section of the American Political Science Association. To further honor his career, of which the last 25 years have been spent at Boalt Hall, this conference brought together colleagues, admirers, and former students.

The conference featured three panels with papers prepared especially for the occasion and a discussant commenting on each session's papers. The sessions include: 1) Law and Politics in the United States, 2) Comparative Law and Courts, and 3) The Politics of European Integration. Papers and commentary were presented by Lief Carter, Javier Couso, Paul Craig, Howard Gillman, Tom Ginsburg, Carol Harlow, Lynn Mather, Shep Melnick, Bronwen Morgan, Brad Roth, Alec Stone Sweet, and Joseph Weiler. Martin provided commentary at the conclusion of the three substantive sessions. The papers were published as an edited volume in 2005, Tom Ginsburg and Robert Kagan, editors.

July 16-20, 2003
Clark Kerr Campus

The Institute was co-sponsored by CSLS and the Law & Society Association, with additional support from Boalt Hall and the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research. The theme of the Institute was “(Studying) Justice in a Changing World:” Some 26 participants drawn from 120 applicants – advanced graduate students and junior faculty from across the U.S. and abroad – had the opportunity to engage with senior law and society scholars. Faculty included 6 CSLS affiliates: Robert Kagan, Lauren Edelman, Robert MacCoun, Philip Selznick (emeritus) Harry Scheiber, and Jonathan Simon, as well as 10 other distinguished law and society scholars.


September 20-21, 2002

A conference on law and society in China was held at the School of Law (Boalt Hall), sponsored by the School, the Institute of East Asian Studies, the Center for the Study of Law and Society and the Center for Chinese Studies. All of the participants had recently engaged in field research in China that promised insights into the operation of a range of institutions, with implications for state-society relations. The conference was organized by Stanley Lubman, visiting scholar at the Center for the Study of Law and Society and lecturer at Boalt Hall, Kevin J. O'Brien, professor of political science, UC Berkeley and Neil Diamant, assistant professor of political science, Dickinson College. The papers were published as an edited volume in 2005, Diamant, O’Brien and Lubman, editors.

Other Highlights 1996-2000

In April 2000 the Center sponsored a two-day symposium honoring founding director Philip Selznick's contribution to socio-legal studies. Focusing on the concept of legality, law and society scholars from across the United States and from abroad presented papers that demonstrated the influence of Selznick's scholarship on their work and on the field. Papers representing a wide range of topics and methodological approaches attested to the breadth and depth of Selznick's impact. Collected papers were published as Legality and Community: On the Intellectual Legacy of Philip Selznick (Rowman and Littlefield, 2002, Robert Kagan, Martin Krygier and Kenneth Winston, editors).

In May, 1997, the Sho Sato Fund and the Center for the Study of Law and Society co-sponsored a two-day conference, "Sociolegal Perspectives on Governmental Regulation in Japan and the U.S." Conference papers by American and Japanese scholars covered comparative regulation of pollution, workplace safety, financial services, gender equality in the workplace, and tobacco use) in the two countries; they are forthcoming in the journal Law in Japan.

In April, 1998, the Center for the Study of Law and Society and the Sho Sato Fund presented a conference, "The Role of the Criminal Defense Counsel in Japan and the U.S," organized by Professor Malcolm Feeley and Center Visiting Scholar Setsuo Miyazawa. Scholars from U.S. and Japanese universities and leading Japanese defense lawyers discussed structural differences between Japanese and American criminal justice and judiciaries and prospects for more adversarialism in Japan. The conference papers will be published (MacMillan, forthcoming).

A third Sho Sato conference on "Legal and Judicial Reform in Japan," directed by Professor Scheiber and Visiting Professor Kahei Rokumoto met in November 1999. The conference papers were be published as a symposium in the American Journal of Comparative Law (Fall, 2001).

The Center continued to co-sponsor annual Sho Sato Fund conferences, including, in February 2005, “Emerging Concepts of Rights in Japanese Law,” organized by Harry Scheiber, with papers by several affiliated faculty and visiting scholars.

In October, 1998, the Center, under the leadership of Professor Harry Scheiber, organized and hosted a conference on The Law of the Sea, with major support from the LUSO-American Development Foundation, and the California Sea Grant program, UCB International and Area Studies. The conference papers have been published in Law of the Sea: The Common Heritage and Emerging Challenges, edited by Harry Scheiber.

Together with Professor David Caron (Law) and Chris Carr ( Ph.D., JSP), Scheiber has been active in the Ocean Governance Study Group, a national scholarly consortium. The Center has hosted several meetings of the group, and Center scholars have contributed articles to special journal issues edited by Study Group members. The proceedings of the 1999 meeting were published as Emerging Issues in National Ocean and Coastal Policy, edited by Harry Scheiber. Papers from the April 2002 meeting, “Bringing New Law to Ocean Waters,” were published in 2004 as Bringing New Law to Ocean Waters (M. Nijhoff Publishers, edited by David D. Caron and Harry N. Scheiber).

In April, 1997, the Center served as the organizational hub for a conference on Social Science and the Law, sponsored jointly with the Russell Sage Foundation and Amherst College and held at Yale Law School. Bringing together leading sociolegal scholars from the US and abroad, the conference led to the publication of Patricia Ewick, Robert A. Kagan, & Austin Sarat, eds, Social Science, Social Policy,and the Law (1999).

The Center for the Study of Law and Society provided support, together with Boalt Hall, for two conferences organized by the student editors of the Ecology Law Quarterly. Papers by legal practitioners, academics, governmental officials, environmental activists at the February, 1997, conference were published as a symposium issue in the Ecology Law Quarterly, "The Ecosystem Approach: New Departures for Land and Water." The February, 1998 conference led to the publication of a symposium issue, "Power, Politics, and Place: Who Holds the Reins of Environmental Regulation?"

In February, 1997, the Center also hosted the "Third Space Workshop on Environmental Regulation," organized by Dr. Larry Ruth (Ph.D, JSP) addressing collaborative regulatory governance, attended by a new working group of sociolegal scholars from Berkeley and five other universities.

In 1996-97, the Center for the Study of Law and Society conducted a Workshop on Environmental Law Enforcement, in which Berkeley faculty initiated discussion among state and federal regulatory officials and prosecutors on practices and standards concerning criminal prosecution in implementing environmental law. The Workshop reflected the Center's interest in creating ongoing links between Berkeley scholars and practicing legal officials.

In September, 1996, the Center sponsored a conference, organized by the National Council on Crime and Delinquency, entitled "Comprehensive Strategy on Juvenile Crime."

In July, 1996, the Center for the Study of Law and Society helped host the Summer Institute of the Law and Society Association, a two-week program on sociolegal studies. The Center held a reception for Institute faculty and participants, and presented a lecture by Philip Selznick.

In 1997 the Center sponsored a conference with the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (principal sponsor) and the University of California Institute for Humanities Research on Legal Culture and the Legal Profession. The conference papers were published as Legal Culture and the Legal Profession, edited by Lawrence M. Friedman and Harry N. Scheiber.