Faculty in the News

Faculty News

  • Prof. Orfield Quoted in Quartz on Racial Disparities in Urban Economic Booms

    August 6, 2020

    Professor Myron Orfield, director of the Law School’s Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity, was quoted in Quartz in an article examining racial disparities in economic advantages in urban areas across the United States. The article cites research produced by the Institute that found that areas that underwent a strong economic expansion between 2000 and 2016 were less likely to have Black residents and more likely to have a surge in white residents. “The dry tinder [for the protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd] was racial and social inequality,” added Orfield.

  • Prof. Wolf to Lead Ethics & Public Policy Component of New Center Funded by $26 Million Grant from National Science Foundation

    August 5, 2020

    Professor Susan Wolf will lead the Ethics & Public Policy component of a new Engineering Research Center (ERC) on Advanced Technologies for the Preservation of Biological Systems (ATP-Bio) based at the University’s Institute for Engineering in Medicine and funded by a $26 million grant from the National Science Foundation. ATP-Bio will focus on new approaches to biopreservation to transform organ transplantation and other biological therapies, advance a sustainable global food supply, preserve biodiversity, and improve treatment of physical trauma. ATP-Bio research will put ethics and public policy at the forefront by conducting and publishing ethical analyses and engaging policy leaders to anticipate and consider the impacts of ATP-Bio research. Professor Wolf will work with faculty at the University of Minnesota and the cooperating ATP-Bio institutions (Massachusetts General Hospital, UC Riverside, and UC Berkeley) as well as an Ethics Advisory Panel. Read more about ATP-Bio here.

  • Prof. Monahan Co-Authors Op-Ed in The Hill on Merits of Employer-Focused Public Health Care Option

    August 5, 2020

    Professor Amy Monahan co-authored an opinion piece in The Hill on the merits of an employer-focused public health care option. The op-ed argues that the Unity Task Force’s recent recommendations miss the opportunity to make more transformative progress by failing to target decision-makers who could make a real difference regarding health care enrollment: employers.

  • Bloomberg Law Quotes Prof. Cotter on Opinion Vacating Attorneys’ Fee Award

    August 4, 2020

    An August 3, 2020 Bloomberg Law article (subscription required) titled “FastShip’s $6 Million Fee Award in Navy Patent Fight Nixed” discusses a recent decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, FastShip, LLC v. United States. The decision vacates an award of $6 million in attorneys’ fees which a lower court had granted an inventor who prevailed in a patent dispute against the U.S. Navy. The article notes that the decision is consistent with a decision earlier this year, which reads the relevant statute (28 U.S.C. § 1498(a)) as not permitting fee awards in patent disputes against the government for the government’s pre-litigation conduct. The article also states that “FastShip spent $6 million to litigate the case where it only won $7 million in damages,” and quotes Professor Tom Cotter as stating, among other things, that the court’s interpretation “makes it marginally more difficult for some patent holders to proceed with claims against the government because they have to shoulder their own fees.”

  • Prof. Turoski Elected to Board of National Association of Patent Practitioners

    July 30, 2020

    Professor Christopher M. Turoski was elected as vice president of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Patent Practitioners (NAPP). NAPP is a nonprofit trade organization dedicated to supporting patent practitioners and those working in the field of patent law in matters relating to patent prosecution and its practice. NAPP provides a collective voice in the broader IP community on patent law and patent prosecution practice.

  • Prof. Shen’s Research on War Deaths Cited in New York Times Article on Local COVID-19 Deaths

    July 28, 2020

    Professor Francis Shen’s research exploring the effect of local wartime casualties on political behavior was cited in the New York Times. Citing published work co-authored by Professor Shen and Cornell University Political Scientist Doug Kriner, the article noted that “[r]esearch shows that when people are killed in action during wartime, residents of the place the victims are from tend to hold elected leaders in Congress and the White House accountable. … Coronavirus-related deaths seem to be having a similar effect.”

  • Prof. Orfield Quoted in The Economist on Racial Divisions in Twin Cities

    July 24, 2020

    Professor Myron Orfield, director of the Law School’s Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity, was quoted in The Economist in an article examining particular racial inequities in the Midwest region of the United States. In this century, said Orfield, racial divisions have increased in Minneapolis-St. Paul. Of the 25 cities with the worst racial segregation in America, 15 are in the Midwest.

  • Prof. Cox Quoted in MarketWatch on Recent CFPB Settlement and Potential Implications for Future Enforcement Modeling

    July 17, 2020

    Professor Prentiss Cox was quoted in a MarketWatch article reporting on recent settlements made by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau with companies and people accused of illegally charging student-loan borrowers fees to help them manage their loans, as well as what these settlements might mean for future CFPB enforcement modeling. The suspended penalty approach is typical in some types of Federal Trade Commission enforcement actions, said Cox. These deals at the CFPB are a signal to Cox that the agency continues to move toward an enforcement model more similar to the FTC’s.

  • Prof. Shen Featured in ABA Journal Article Highlighting Leaders in the Field of Neurolaw

    July 16, 2020

    Professor Francis Shen, director of the Shen Neurolaw Lab and executive director of the Center for Law, Brain and Behavior, is featured in an ABA Journal article highlighting leaders in the emerging field of neurolaw.

    At the core of neuroscience and law, Shen says, is the recognition that our deepest desires, our interpersonal decisions, and the law’s regulation of those desires and decisions, are all inextricably linked to our unique neurobiology. “These are the things the legal system is ultimately protecting: protecting privacy, wanting to ensure safety and security and liberty.” Shen adds, “If there’s one thing I’d like to do with my lab, it is to communicate with the legal community that the brain is really this important. Every story is a brain story. If you get that far, then to me, all the questions that law asks get reshaped—in some form—as … brain [questions].”

  • Prof. Befort Quoted in USA Today on Claims Regarding ADA Protection Against Face Mask Requirements

    July 16, 2020

    Professor Stephen Befort ’74 was quoted in a USA Today article examining the claim that the American with Disabilities Act exempts people from face mask requirements imposed by governments and retailers under the “direct threat” clause. A “direct threat” under the ADA is any substantial risk to the health and safety a disabled person poses to others, which cannot be countered with reasonable accommodation. “Basically, only an individual with a disability who can show that wearing a mask would significantly interfere with their ability to breathe or some other necessary function could claim that an exemption from a mask requirement would constitute a reasonable accommodation,” said Befort.


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