Sessions Information

  • January 3, 2020
    10:30 am - 12:15 pm
    Session Type: AALS Programs
    Session Capacity: N/A
    Hotel: Washington Marriott Wardman Park Hotel
    Room: Marriott Ballroom Salon 2
    Floor: Lobby Level
    George Washington was so convinced of the importance of higher education for the success of the new Republic that he repeatedly advocated creating a national university to build an informed citizenry. Washington’s vision never came to fruition in the way he intended, but institutions of higher learning became engrained in our national landscape over the past two centuries. Yet today, questions are being raised from the right, the left, and the middle about the value of higher education - including legal education - for constitutional democracy. Do institutions of higher learning reinforce or deconstruct existing social inequalities? Do they foster polarization or promote tolerance? Do they–should they–help prepare young people for participation in a representative democracy? How do institutions of higher learning, including law schools, increase knowledge and promote critical thinking, while modeling respect for divergent reasonable views? How are law schools distinctive in university communities? Do we have special responsibilities to prepare our students for roles as active citizens and participants in government? How could we do better?

    Ron Daniels, President of the Johns Hopkins University, former Dean of the Law Faculty at University of Toronto, and former Provost at the University of Pennsylvania, will address these questions in a short plenary talk, based on his forthcoming book on the role of colleges and universities in liberal democracies. He will then be joined by a panel of legal educators including Risa L. Golubuff, Dean of the University of Virginia School of Law; Larry Kramer, former Dean of Stanford Law School and now President of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation; and Vince Rougeau, Dean of Boston College Law School, for a discussion of these and other questions, among the panelists and with the audience.
Session Speakers
Johns Hopkins University

University of Virginia School of Law

Harvard Law School

William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

Boston College Law School

Session Fees
  • [4210] AALS Presidential Opening Plenary Session - The Role of Universities and Law Schools in Constitutional Democracy: $0.00