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Oona Hathaway ’97 Returns to Yale Law School Faculty

Oona A. Hathaway ’97, Professor of Law at the University of California at Berkeley, will rejoin the Yale Law School faculty as Professor of Law starting on July 1, 2009. Professor Hathaway is one of the nation’s leading voices on international law and international relations, transnational law, and the law of U.S. foreign policy and also teaches in the area of Procedure. 

Professor Hathaway earned her B.A. summa cum laude at Harvard University in 1994 and her J.D. at Yale Law School, where she was editor-in-chief of The Yale Law Journal, in 1997. She went on to serve as a law clerk for Judge Patricia McGowan Wald of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and for Justice Sandra Day O'Connor of the United States Supreme Court, followed by fellowships at Harvard University's Carr Center for Human Rights Policy and Center for the Ethics and the Professions. Professor Hathaway served as an associate professor at Boston University School of Law before coming to Yale Law School as an associate professor of law. She also serves as a member of the Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on Public International Law.

Acting Dean Kate Stith said, “We are delighted to welcome Professor Hathaway back to the Law School. Her current research—for which she was awarded a Carnegie Scholars Award—focuses on both the promise and the limits of international law, questions that are of exceptional importance at this time. She approaches these questions through careful, empirical analysis, and her contributions will be lasting.”

Dean and Gerard C. and Bernice Latrobe Smith Professor of International Law Harold Hongju Koh added, “Oona Hathaway has broken new ground in bringing the tools of empirical analysis to the study of international law and international relations. Her recent foreign relations work on the techniques, evolution, and consequences of what she calls ‘international lawmaking’ is forcing reexamination of conventional wisdoms and challenging real-life policy choices.”

Professor Hathaway has testified three times and gave one congressional briefing on the legality of the recent U.S.-Iraq agreement. She has also written extensively on the issue, co-authoring a series of op-eds with Yale Law School professor Bruce Ackerman ’67 that appeared in publications including The Washington Post, The Guardian, San Francisco Chronicle, and Slate.

Professor Hathaway is completing an article, forthcoming in The Yale Law Journal, entitled “Restoring the Balance of Power in International Lawmaking.” Her recent articles include "Treaties' End: The Past, Present and Future of International Lawmaking in the United States," Yale Law Journal; "Between Power and Principle: An Integrated Theory of International Law," Chicago Law Review; "The Cost of Compliance," Stanford Law Review; "Do Human Rights Treaties Make a Difference?" Yale Law Journal; and "Revisionism and Rationalism in International Law," Harvard Law Review

She is lead author of Foundations of International Law and Politics (Foundation Press) and is currently working on a book entitled, Strong States, Strong World: Why International Law Succeeds and Fails and What We Should Do About It (forthcoming from Princeton University Press).