Each year the UC Davis Law Review hosts a symposium focused on a current issue in the legal community.

2010 Symposium

When: Friday, February 26 2010. 8:45 AM Where: King Hall, Wilkins Moot Court Room Who: Free and open to the public

Topic: The Asian Century

The symposium is designed to critically evaluate the notion of "The Asian Century." This event will bring together leading scholars from across the country to explore the significant impact of Asia's rapid economic, social, and cultural development on the international system.

If the Nineteenth Century was led by Britain, and the Twentieth Century by the United States, will the Twenty-First Century be led by Asia? If so, what will this mean for human rights, including women's and gay rights, and for economic development?

Three out of every five people in the world live in Asia. The rapid economic development of China and India over the last two decades has made Asia more central to the international system. Yet, the continent has largely remained at the periphery of discussions of legalism. This may in part be due to the complexity of Asia: the geographic entity known as Asia defies essentializing claims, instead boasting a diversity of histories and circumstances, from the skyscrapers of Shanghai to the slums of Mumbai.

This symposium will ask how the rise of Asia might bolster or hamper efforts to expand human capabilities. To consider this issue, the Law Review will bring together some of the nation's leading scholars, with expertise on multinational corporations, intellectual property, human rights, gay rights, the status of rural persons, national security law, and constitutional law.

Schedule of Events

Panel 1: Human Rights Under Stress Panel 2: The Concept of Asia in International Law Panel 3: Lost in Translation?

Featured Speakers

Keynote Address: Martha Nussbaum - Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics, University of Chicago School of Law Afra Afsharipour - UC Davis School of Law Keith Aoki - UC Davis School of Law Anupam Chander - UC Davis School of Law Anil Kalhan - Drexel University School of Law Jonathan Kang - University of Washington Law School Tom Ginsburg - University of Chicago School of Law Holning Lau - University of North Carolina Law School Lisa Pruitt - UC Davis School of Law Teemu Ruskola - Emory Law School Madhavi Sunder - UC Davis School of Law Peter Yu - Drake University Law School

For more information, please phone (530) 754-7644 or email [email protected]

Past Symposia


Topic: The Honorable John Paul Stevens

As part of the 40th anniversary of the dedication of Martin Luther King, Jr., Hall, home to the University of California, Davis, School of Law, the 2009 UC Davis Law Review Symposium will examine the career of U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. Since his appointment by President Gerald Ford in 1975, Justice Stevens has crafted a rich jurisprudence on matters involving core values of liberty, equality, and security. Legal experts from academia, journalism, and the practice, many of whom served as law clerks to the Justice, will analyze his work on topics including terrorism, criminal justice, abortion, affirmative action, and environmental protection.


Topic: First Amendment Rights in America's Public Schools: From the Schoolhouse Gate to the Courthouse Steps

Since the 1960s, it has been clear that the constitutional rights of students do not end at the schoolhouse gate. What is far less certain is the scope of those rights and the proper role of the federal courts in enforcing them. In 1969, the Supreme Court determined that student speech could only be restricted by school authorities if it materially disrupted the school's educational mission or impinged on the rights of other students.

During the next forty years, lower courts and school authorities have struggled to interpret and apply this standard in a broad range of cases and circumstances. In 1988, the Court concluded that student speech in curricular and school-sponsored activities could be regulated by school authorities as long as the restrictions were reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical concerns. Again, lower courts and school administrators have struggled to apply this standard of review in a coherent and consistent way. With the Supreme Court's recent decision on students' speech rights in Morse v. Frederick, the Bong Hits 4 Jesus case, these issues are even more timely — and fascinating.


Topic: Katz v. US: 40 Years Later

As the fortieth anniversary of Katz v. United States, 389 U.S. 347 (1967), approaches, there could hardly be a better time to reexamine that important decision. The case was a landmark in its time. With the declaration that the Fourth Amendment protects people, not places and provides protection of a reasonable expectation of privacy, the Katz case fundamentally altered the foundation of constitutional criminal procedure. But the case is not a relic of history. The issues that were raised in the Katz case are of continued relevance for contemporary practitioners. Lawyers are still seeking to define the sorts of electronic monitoring that should be classified as Fourth Amendment searches, even as the technologies continue to evolve. Lawyers are still working to define the scope of Fourth Amendment protections in an age of global terrorism. Just a few weeks ago, in ACLU v. National Security Agency, Judge Anna Diggs Taylor of the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a warrantless wiretapping program initiated by the National Security Agency after the events of September 11, 2001. Her opinion looks back to Katz, and to the statutes enacted in its wake. In short, many of the fundamental questions discussed in the Katz case continue to pose challenges for contemporary lawyers. We hope that our symposium will provide a useful forum for an updated exploration of those questions.


Topic: Intellectual Property & Social Justice

A quarter century ago, the New Jersey Supreme Court declared in the historic case of State v. Shack that property rights serve human values. Property rights today balance myriad values, from efficiency to personhood, human health, dignity, fairness and distributive justice. But is this also true of intellectual property today? If intellectual property has come of age, we must ask whom it serves.

We have assembled some of the brightest minds in the nation, from the academy to non-profit organizations, to begin to document and articulate the relationship between intellectual property and social justice. We aspire to begin to fill a gap in intellectual property theory by broadening the theoretical underpinnings of, and agenda for, intellectual property law in the Information Age.

The theory may be behind the practice. WIPO has issued a Declaration stating that intellectual property rights in this century must take into consideration health, human rights, and development. The New York Times labels intellectual property the first social movement of the new century. Indigenous peoples claim intellectual property rights protect cultural identity and generate redistribution of economic and cultural resources.

This Symposium, to be published in the UC Davis Law Review in 2006, will begin to elaborate a social analysis of intellectual property. The Symposium will address issues such as formal versus substantive equality in cyberspace; the egalitarian benefits of new technologies and emergent forms of organizing creative work, such as open-source and Creative Commons products; the appropriation of traditional, Western intellectual property concepts by disempowered, non-Western peoples; intellectual property as a tool for development; and the reproduction of real world inequalities in cyberspace.