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School of Public Affairs Faculty

Human Rights-Related Faculty Profiles

Bill Davies: Professor Davies is a legal historian, focusing on the transnational nature of legal ideas and systems. His particular field of expertise lies in the law and institutions of the European Union, but he finds equal enjoyment in embedding this supranational project within the longer historical context of Western legal history. Born and raised in London in the UK but having spent a number of years in Berlin, Germany, he came to American University in the fall of 2007.
Courses Taught: JLS 110 Western Legal Tradition; HONS 301 Politics of Human Rights; JLS 496 Great Trials.

Chris Edelson: Professor Edelson is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Government teaching Civil Rights and Liberties. Prior to joining the AU faculty, Professor Edelson practiced employment discrimination law in Washington, D.C., and New York and also served as state legislative director for the Human Rights Campaign, a national organization advocating for equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
Courses Taught: GOVT 215 Civil Rights & Liberties; GOVT 296 Constitution, National Security, & the War on Terror.

Todd Eisenstadt: Professor Eisenstadt studies democratization, identity and social movements, public opinion, political parties, and election finance, mainly in Latin America. He is the principal researcher of the USAID Higher Education and Development Program grant “Uniting Law and Society in Oaxaca, Mexico: A Research and Teaching Program.” He is also the author of Courting Democracy in Mexico and has authored and/or edited four other books. He is currently completing a manuscript, Surveying the Silence: Liberal and Communal Identities in Southern Mexico’s Indigenous Rights Movement. Between 2000 and 2005, Eisenstadt directed USAID’s “Mexico Elections Project,” including academic research and the training of hundreds of observers of local elections and other government processes in Mexico. He is a former print journalist and Capitol Hill staffer.
Courses Taught: GOVT 615 Qualitative Research Methods; GOVT 696 Comparative Group Politics & Conflicts.

David Fagelson: Professor Fagelson’s research interests include global ethics, constitutional rights, law and development, political theory and human rights. He has published a book and numerous articles in journals of law and politics concerning the meaning and moral basis of law and is now at work on a book about the ethics of foreign assistance. Before coming to American University, he practiced law and acted as a foreign legal advisor to government officials, lawyers and journalists from Russia to Cambodia. He worked mainly on issues of corruption and the creation of legal institutions in the post-Communist transition.
Courses Taught: JLS 203 Law and Social Theory; JLS 496 Foundations of Knowledge; JLS 607 Concept of Justice; JLS 615 Law and Human Rights.

Deirdre Golash: Professor Golash’s research interests center on the philosophy of law, particularly the moral justification of criminal punishment. She has published numerous articles on these subjects. Before coming to American University, Professor Golash served as senior staff associate at the Federal Judicial Center, where her responsibilities included development and implementation of sentencing guideline education for federal court personnel.
Courses Taught: JLS 308 Justice, Morality, & the Law; JLS 602 Legal Theory; JLS 607 Concept of Justice; JLS 796 Proseminar in Law and Societ; JLS 796 Writing for Publication.

Tamara Hafner: Professor Hafner is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Public Administration and Policy. She works in the area of international health policy. Her research focuses on global R&D policy, especially as it relates to access to medicines in developing countries. Prior to her graduate education, she worked in the domestic pharmaceutical industry.
Courses Taught: PUAD 605 Quantitative Methods for Public Managers; PUAD 608 Comparative Administrative Systems.

Kristine Kalanges: Professor Kalanges is a lawyer and scholar whose principal research interests include legal and political philosophy, as well as the intersection of law, religion and politics in the United States and around the world. She is especially interested in religious freedom and the ways in which religious beliefs, practices and histories condition legal and political institutional possibilities. Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, she joined American University in the fall of 2009. Previously, she practiced law in New York.
Courses Taught: JLS 110 Western Legal Tradition; JLS 201 Philosophical Problems in Law.

Douglas Klusmeyer: Professor Klusmeyer’s current research interests include migration, political ethics, citizenship and international politics. He has both a PhD in modern European history and a JD from Stanford University. His approach to issues of law and policy reflects this inter-disciplinary background. He is less interested in formal legal doctrine than in how law relates to its context (e.g. social, intellectual, and political). Previously, Professor Klusmeyer was the co-director of the Carnegie Endowment’s Comparative Citizenship Project and an associate with the Endowment’s International Migration Policy Program.
Courses Taught: JLS 110 Western Legal Tradition; JLS 202 History of International Thought and Law; JLS 496 Legal History Seminar.

Laura Langbein: Professor Langbein’s research fields include theories of bureaucratic discretion, productivity, principal-agent models, social capital, and cooperation in the workplace; theories of influence of interest groups in Congress and the bureaucracy; empirical applications in various policy areas, including the environment, education, defense, housing, criminal justice (death penalty and police), and corruption. Her articles have appeared in numerous journals on politics, economics, policy analysis and public administration. She has forthcoming articles on the consequences of varying levels of discretion in federal agencies, and on the World Bank’s measurement of corruption in countries.
Courses Taught: PUAD 604 Public Program Evaluation; PUAD 607 Economics & Politics of Public Policy; GOVT 613 Conduct of Inquiry II.

Jennifer Lawless: Professor Lawless is a nationally recognized expert on women's involvement in politics. She is co-author (with Richard L. Fox) of the book It Takes a Candidate: Why Women Don't Run for Office. She has also published numerous articles in political science journals and has issued two policy reports on the barriers that impede women’s candidate emergence.
Courses Taught: GOVT 482 Women & Politics; GOVT 484 Women & Political Leadership; GOVT 485 Women in Foreign Relations; GOVT 485 Women, Politics, & the Media; GOVT 485 Political Skills Building; GOVT 710 Approaches to Studying American Politics.

Thomas Merrill: Professor Merrill’s research and teaching interests include political philosophy, especially early modern political philosophy, bioethics, and public policy. He is completing a book manuscript on David Hume’s political philosophy, has published articles and reviews on a number of topics, and co-edited Human Dignity and Bioethics. He has served as senior research analyst at the President’s Council on Bioethics and has taught at St. John’s College, Annapolis, as well as holding postdoctoral fellowships from the Program on Constitutional Government at Harvard University and the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C.
Courses Taught: GOVT 105 Individual Freedom vs. Authority; GOVT 306 American Political Thought; PUAD 619 Ethical Issues in Public Policy.

Kimberly Cowell Meyers: Professor Meyers is the author of Religion and Politics in the Nineteenth Cenury: The Party Faithful in Ireland and Germany and several articles in Women & Politics, Irish Political Studies and Nationalism and Ethnic Studies. Her opinion-editorials on politics in Northern Ireland have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Voice of America and the Christian Science Monitor, among other newspapers, and she has appeared on BBC radio and Monitor Radio. Her research focuses on women in national legislatures.
Courses Taught: GOVT 130 Comparative Politics; GOVT 310 Intro to Political Research; HNRS 302 Politics of Peace in N. Ireland.

Saul Newman: Professor Newman’s publications include Ethnoregional Conflict in Democracies as well as journal articles on nationalism, ethnic politics and terrorism. He is conducting research on the decline of settler nationalism in South Africa, Northern Ireland and Israel and its impact on resolving disputes between settler and native nationalist movements.
Courses Taught: GOVT 130 Comparative Politics.

David Pitts: Professor Pitts is a public management and policy scholar with a primary focus on workforce diversity and representative bureaucracy. His research examines how diversity among public officials can alter policy design and implementation, particularly when those policy changes affect target population outcomes and organizational performance. Much of Professor Pitts' research focuses on diversity in public schools, specifically in how racial/ethnic diversity among school board members and teachers can affect student achievement and discipline outcomes. He is also interested in diversity management programs and their impacts on work-related outcomes.
Courses Taught: PUAD 601 Methods of Problem Solving I; PUAD-602 Methods of Problem Solving II; GOVT 612 Conduct of Inquiry I; GOVT 613 Conduct of Inquiry II; PUAD 684 Organizational Analysis.

David Rosenbloom: Professor Rosenbloom’s specializations include constitutional and administrative law, public administrative theory, history, reform, and personnel management. He is a member of the National Academy of Public Administration and the recipient of numerous awards, including the Gaus Award for exemplary scholarship in the joint tradition of political science and public administration and the Waldo Award for outstanding contributions to the literature and leadership of public administration. He was editor-in-chief of Public Administration Review (1991-1996), co-editor of the Policy Studies Journal (1985-1990), and serves on the editorial boards of about a dozen public administration journals. The (co-)author or (co-)editor of more than 300 professional publications, Rosenbloom frequently guest lectures at universities in the U.S. and abroad. In 2009-2010, he was Chair Professor of Public Management at City University of Hong Kong. His public service includes appointment to the Clinton-Gore Presidential Transition Team for the Office of Personnel Management in 1992. Courses Taught:PUAD 616 Legal Basis of Public Administration; PUAD 626 Legal Issues in Public Administration.

Shanaysha Sauls: Professor Sauls is trained in the Western tradition of political thought and in the study of change and continuity in American political institutions. The title of her current project is The Concept of Stability and the Theory of Democracy in The Federalist. Her teaching and research interests examine the concept of modernity and its effects on political thought and praxis.
Courses Taught: GOVT 105 Individual Freedom vs. Authority; GOVT 486 Feminist Political Theory; GOVT 496 Race & Political Theory

Jeremy Shiffman: Professor Shiffman is associate professor in the Department of Public Administration and Policy. He is a leading expert in the area of child and maternal health in developing countries. Professor Shiffman was awarded a prestigious Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation grant to support his research in this area.
Courses Taught: PUAD 614 Development Management; PUAD 696 Global Health Policy.

Rita Simon: Professor Simon’s research interests and primary areas of concentration in academic work are law and society; the jury system; immigration policies and public opinion; trans-racial adoption; women and the criminal justice system; women's issues; and Israeli society. Professor Simon recently published her sixty-third book in these fields. She is the recipient of Guggenheim and Ford Foundation Fellowships. Professor Simon is the former editor of American Sociological Review and Justice Quarterly and the editor of Gender Issues.
Courses Taught: JLS 496 Research to Published Document; JLS 610 Justice & Public Policy.

Emilio Viano: A pioneer in the field of victimology, victims rights, and an expert in the field of transnational crime, Professor Viano is recognized internationally for his contributions to justice and human rights. He has authored countless articles and books, including on transnational crime, and is also widely published in law and behavior science journals. Professor Viano is a member of the International Commission on the Revision of the U.N. Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners/Detainees.
Courses Taught: JLS 245 Cities and Crime; JLS 496 Human Trafficking and the Media; JLS 496 Law and Social Sciences; JLS 517 Victimology; JLS 526 Domestic Violence.

Jessica Waters: Professor Waters is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Justice, Law and Society. Prior to joining the AU faculty, Professor Waters was a litigator at WilmerHale, where she specialized in criminal defense and reproductive rights cases, and also clerked for the Honorable Emmet Sullivan on the D.C. District Court.
Courses Taught: JLS 101 Introduction to Law; JLS 307 Justice, Law, & the Constitution; JLS 496 Reproduction Rights & the Law.