International and Comparative Law
The University of Chicago Law School has a broad commitment to the study and practice of International Law. Listed below are some of the avenues through which this commitment is expressed.
The Law School offers an expansive and well-rounded curriculum with over 170 elective courses, including more than 30 electives in international and comparative law. Our faculty teach courses covering human rights, foreign relations, international criminal law, international development and finance, and much more. To view the full range of course offerings in international and comparative law, browse our course list.
The Law School is committed to recruiting the best teachers and scholars. Our faculty are leading law scholars and have a diverse and exciting range of interests, including in international and comparative law. Some of our faculty members with teaching and scholarship interests in this area include:
Chicago Journal of International Law
CJIL is a student-edited forum for discussion and analysis of international law and policy issues. CJIL is committed to publishing timely and concise scholarly work written by academics, judges, practitioners, policymakers, and students. The journal is published twice yearly, in the fall and spring.
JD International Human Rights Summer Internship Program
Through its JD-IHR Summer Program, the University of Chicago Law School coordinates with international human rights organizations to host University of Chicago JD students for summer fellowships. Students participating in the IHR Program work abroad during the summer at international NGOs on human rights and other public interest law related issues and are eligible for guaranteed public interest funding.
International Immersion Program
The International Immersion Program provides support to students seeking substantive, immersive international experiences and to help prepare students to enter an increasingly globalized profession. Students in the program travel on a short term study trip to a foreign country during their breaks and learn about international and comparative law through seminars with legal scholars, meetings with professionals at law firms, businesses, international organizations, government institutions, and exchanges with alumni and local law students. Past trips include such destinations as Argentina, Bahrain, Belize, Chile, China, Cuba, Hong Kong, Japan, Kenya, The Netherlands, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, Qatar, Thailand, UAE, and Vietnam and cover such topics as law and economic development, comparative constitutional law, international human rights law, international trade and investment law, etc.
The Constitutions Lab initiative is designed to introduce students to real-world projects related to constitutional design. The Lab draws on Professor Tom Ginsburg’s work with the Comparative Constitutions Project, an academic database on the formal provisions of national constitutions for all countries since 1789, and its Constitute initiative to provide information to constitutional drafters and national publics. Ginsburg explained, “When we started the Comparative Constitutions Project, we had several academic goals in mind: to understand how constitutional ideas spread, to determine what makes constitutions endure, and to learn about what ultimately ensures that constitutions are effective. But we also thought that the project might be useful to real-world constitution-makers.”
In the past few years, data from the Comparative Constitutions Project has been used in support of constitutional transitions in several countries in Asia, the Middle East and East Africa. Students have been involved in researching particular topics under Ginsburg’s direction, contributing to reports on draft texts, memos on background issues, and analyses of existing constitutional performance. Particular projects in any given year depend on what constitution-making processes are active. For more information, please contact Professor Ginsburg at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have several student organizations related to international law, a partnership with the Salzburg Lloyd N. Cutler Fellows Program, and an international law guide compiled by our library.