The Center for Constitutional Governance contributes to Columbia’s intellectual life by organizing seminars, workshops, and colloquia that address key constitutional issues.
Public Law Workshop
The Public Law Workshop exposes students to current scholarship in the public law area. It is structured around presentations of working papers by leading public law scholars, as well as accompanying seminar discussions. Recent Workshops have focused on issues such as the presidency, federalism, economic inequality, and democratic institutions in an age of polarization.
The Roberts Court Seminar
The seminar examines in depth the jurisprudence of the Roberts Court, from October Term 2005, when Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito were elevated to the Court, until the present. The course begins with an overview focusing on the aspirations that Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito articulated for the Court and their roles on it at their confirmation hearings and on identifying the major themes of the Roberts Courts' jurisprudence. Each class session is devoted to an in-depth exploration of a particular subject matter area. Topics include: the separation of powers; national security; the scope of congressional power and federalism; freedom of speech; freedom of religion; race; substantive due process and equal protection; substantive criminal law and criminal procedure; access to courts, and other topics.
Constitutional Governance Practicum
Students in the practicum work on projects related to contemporary issues in American constitutional governance, in conjunction with partners including the New York City Law Department, the ACLU, and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. The projects focus on questions of federalism, preemption, and state and local power across a range of areas, including immigration, civil rights, and firearms regulation. Often the projects are connected to ongoing or contemplated litigation. Students produce an array of writing, such as research memos, briefs, white papers, and independent scholarship. Read more about the Constitutional Governance Practicum here.
Columbia-Cardozo Transnational Constitutionalism Seminar
The rise of illiberal constitutionalism poses several crucial questions regarding the future of constitutional democracy. The Colloquium, which meets alternately at Columbia and Cardozo Law Schools, will present a wide variety of perspectives on these questions through weekly presentations of original papers by an international and interdisciplinary group of leading scholars. Papers will be circulated in advance, and each week's presenter will discuss his/her contribution with the conveners and student and other participants at the Colloquium. Students will be required to submit regular response papers and a final paper at the end of the semester.