MULS 2009 Works-In-Progress Workshop (June Session)

champTo open my month as faculty blogger, I would first like to thank my colleague Michael O’Hear, whose dedication to, and work for, the Marquette Faculty Blog since its creation last summer have been incredible.  This is very much one of the major reasons why this project has been so successful and brought so many wonderful contributions to so many aspects of the law so far.

Another fundamental area where the Marquette Law School faculty is also showing important contributions to the law is the production of scholarship that results in law review articles, book chapters, textbooks, etc.  We often present and discuss these works when they are still in progress in conferences around the country with our colleagues in our areas at other schools.  Still, to facilitate even further these very important discussions, the MULS Academic Programs Committee, led by Professor Chad Oldfather, has organized two sessions of an in-house Works-in-Progress Workshop for June and July.

The June session was a great success. A group of eight of us met this past Wednesday and presented our works-in-progress, from very rough to more completed drafts of scholarship, to our colleagues participating in the program. 

 In addition to the various presenters, Professor Paul Secunda also provided participants with helpful feedback. The topics and discussion on each of the drafts were fascinating and brought us on a beautiful journey throughout many different areas of the law.

Professor Phoebe Williams opened the day by presenting a paper on “Age Discrimination as a Barrier to the Provision of Health Care,” in which she analyzes the Age Discrimination Act of 1975 and advocates for the creation of appropriate data collection and research models to effectively identify and redress those instances where advanced age is illegitimately considered by health care providers.

Professor David Papke then followed with a paper on “Law, Legal Institutions, and the Criminalization of the Underclass,” which represents one of the chapters of  a planned book on the analysis of the relationship between legal institutions and the “underclass” in the United States.

Also related to Criminal Law, Professor Greg O’Meara presented a paper on habeas corpus review for state prisoners, in which he challenges the belief, almost taken for granted after passage of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996, that habeas claims are ineffective.  Professor O’Meara’s paper will be part of the Conference on Criminal Appeals, which has been organized by Professors O’Hear and Oldfather and will take place at Marquette Law School on June 15-16, 2009. The paper will also be published in a special symposium issue of the Marquette Law Review.

The Workshop continued with the presentation of Professor Vada Lindsey on the wrongs of the “Earned Income Tax Credit.”  In this paper, Professor Lindsey criticizes the effectiveness of the EITC, particularly insofar as it fails to encourage saving by the working poor.

Professor Lisa LaPlante followed with a presentation that brought us to a different dimension of the law: international law. In her current project, starting from the analysis of the conviction of former Peruvian President Fujimori, Professor LaPlante considers the issue of criminal accountability for wars on terror and human rights violations by heads of state.

Professor Nadelle Grossman then brought all of us back to our classrooms by discussing her current research project: how traditional law school teaching, which is based primarily on case law, fails in preparing students for transactional practice. In her paper, Professor Grossman highlights the gap between the reality of legal practice and law school teaching, criticizes the lack of valuable materials for teaching transactional law and practice, and calls upon law school curricula to bridge this very important gap.

Next, Professor Michael O’Hear presented a draft of his article “Appellate Review of Sentence Explanations: Learning from the Wisconsin and Federal Experience,” which he will also present at the Criminal Appeals Conference and which will be published in the symposium issue of the Marquette Law Review. In his paper, Professor O’Hear proposes a set of principles to guide the appellate review of sentence explanations in jurisdictions, such as Wisconsin, that lack mandatory sentencing guidelines.

I then concluded the day with a presentation on “The Case for a Fair and Balanced Protection of Geographical Indications of Origin,” which addresses the reasons why we should protect these “new” types of intellectual property (which refer to names such as Prosciutto di Parma, Chianti, Bordeaux, Budwar Bier, or Idaho Potatoes) and the limitations that should apply to these rights. Unfortunately, I had no time to provide tastes of the many (good quality) food and drinks I mention in my paper!

Thank you again, Professor Oldfather, for organizing such a great day of legal discourse and intellectual exchange at Marquette Law School.

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