International and Comparative Law Center

Global Legal Systems
from the
Center of the Nation

The International and Comparative Law Center works to coordinate the education of Washburn Law students in international and comparative law — helping them to understand not only international law and foreign legal systems, but to deepen their understanding of their own system of law, and to prepare them for a modern legal career. The Center also supports and promotes the work of Washburn faculty members in their research, writing, and conference work, their teaching and other educational activities, as well as in their more practical work in international and comparative law, both at home and abroad, in a wide range of specializations.


Washburn Law Hosts Great Plains Colloquium

The International and Comparative Law Center hosted the inaugural Great Plains International and Comparative Law Colloquium at Washburn Law on May 14, 2015. The colloquium, which began with a lunch and ended over dinner, involved 10 scholars from 3 schools in the region (Washburn Law (WU), the University of Kansas (KU), and the University of Tulsa (TU)) workshopping 5 projects, ranging from the evolution of international trade in both practice and scholarship, the creation of safe harbors from international intellectual property, and law and lawlessness in Syria, to legal and institutional reforms to address ecological collapse in the Mediterranean, and constitutional reinterpretation of Japan's "peace" constitution. The colloquium was a first step in what the Center hopes will be a collaboration with neighboring schools to create a more integrated community of international and comparative law professors in the region, and a dynamic environment for international and comparative law scholarship.

Photograph: Attendees at the 2015 Great Plains International and Comparative Law Colloquium held May 14, 2015 at Washburn Law.
Pictured (left to right): Sam Halabi (Tulsa), Raj Bhala (KU),
Virginia Harper Ho (KU), Freddy Sourgens (WU),
Craig Martin (WU), Amy Westbrook (WU),
John Head (KU), Ali Khan (WU), Patricia Judd (WU).

Osaka University Professor Learns About Washburn Law LL.M. Program

The International and Comparative Law Center hosted Professor Koto Fukui of Osaka University in March. Professor Fukui, who is the Director of International Studies at Osaka University School of Law and the Graduate School of Law and Politics, was visiting to discuss possible exchange and study abroad programs between Osaka University and Washburn University, and the enrollment of Osaka University graduates in Washburn Law's new LL.M. program. Professor Craig Martin, Co-Director of the International and Comparative Law Center, studied at Osaka University, and continues to teach comparative constitutional law courses there each summer.

Photograph: Professor Koto Fukui with Thomas Romig, Aida Alaka, and Craig Martin.

Professor Martin Gives Keynote at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan

Professor Craig Martin travelled to Kyoto, Japan during reading week to present "Article 9 at a Crossroads: The Past, Present and Future of Japan's Peace Constitution," as the keynote speaker at the Ritsumeikan University, College of International Relations Research Group on Pacifism, 6th Annual Seminar, on March 18, 2015. The government of Japan's so-called "reinterpretation" of the war-renouncing provision of the Constitution of Japan, and its likely effort to formally amend the provision in the next couple of years, has lead to increasing debate and analysis in Japan.

Photograph: Craig Martin at Ryoanji in Kyoto, Japan.

See earlier stories.

Photograph: Tonya Kowalski.
Tonya Kowalski
Professor of Law and Director of International Legal Programs
Photograph: Craig Martin.
Craig Martin
Associate Professor of Law
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Alumni Profile
Photograph: Paula Appelhans.

Paula Appelhans
Class of 1998

Paula works as a research associate with the Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE) in Singapore on public policy issues related to gender equality, anti-discrimination in the workplace, disability, health care access and health care finance. Her current research joins with American University's Institute for Disabled Public Policy and focuses on the implementation, monitoring and enforcement mechanisms of the UN Convention of Rights of Persons with Disability in ASEAN countries.

Paula began her career after Washburn in health care law which included a focus on hospital acquisitions. She repositioned her career in 2009 by entering the University of Essex, England for a degree in Health Care Law and Human Rights.

Paula credits Washburn's research and writing excellence for making the transition to international law and public policy research. "It was a tough course even back when I was in school, but the methodology really stands out as I work with different countries around the world."

Alumni Profile
Photograph: Jessica Dorsey.

Jessica Dorsey
Class of 2008

Jessica works at the T.M.C. Asser Institute, conducting research in the areas of the laws of war and international human rights law. She is also a candidate for Ph.D. at the University of Amsterdam, writing on the geographic and temporal scope of armed conflict.

Jessica began this career path at Washburn, where she did the International and Comparative Law Certificate, and the study abroad program at Utrecht University. She went on to do an LL.M. at Utrecht, before commencing her Ph.D. and beginning work at the T.M.C. Asser Institute.

Jessica writes that: "All of this happened after having been introduced to the subject matter and opportunities in international law at Washburn Law!"