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Speaker Biographies

Speaker Biographies 

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Rachelle Alterman (Prof. emerita at the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology - and Senior Researcher at the Neaman Institute for National Policy Research) is an urban planner and lawyer, holding degrees from the University of Manitoba in Canada (BA Hon. and MCP), a PhD from the Technion, and LLB from Tel Aviv University. She specializes in comparative planning law, land policy and housing rights, and heads the Faculty Laboratory on these topics. She is the Founding President of the International Academic Association on Planning, Law and Property Rights and an Honorary Fellow of the Association of European Schools of Planning. An up-to-date listing of her publications may be viewed here

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Prof. Tarun Arora presently serving at Central University of Punjab as Head, Department of Law and Dean of School of Legal Studies. Life member of Indian Institute of Public Administration, New Delhi. Besides, associated with United Nations Development Programme as Master Trainer on International Biological Diversity Law; & Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs, GoI on Capacity Building Programmes for Youth on Parliamentary Procedure and Practices. Areas of research are Environmental Law, Constitutional Law and Legal Theory.  

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Greg Baltz is visiting assistant clinical professor and Director of the Housing Justice & Tenant Solidarity Clinic at Rutgers Law School. He joins Rutgers from NYU School of Law, where he was a legal fellow at the NYU Furman Center for Real Estate & Urban Policy and worked with both the Anti-Displacement Practice Area of CUNY’s Community & Economic Development Clinic and Columbia Law School’s Law, Power, and Social Change Externship. His scholarship focuses on housing justice organizing, real estate finance, and housing habitability.

Prior to entering academia, he represented New York City-based tenant associations in rent strikes, repair and anti-harassment litigation, and legislative advocacy while at TakeRoot Justice. He began his legal career as a Ford Foundation Fellow at Make the Road New York, where he litigated wage and hour and employment discrimination cases on behalf of organized immigrant workers. He is a graduate of Harvard Law School and the Georgetown University Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.  

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Alessio Bartolacelli is Associate Professor of Business Law and European Company Law at the Department of Law, University of Macerata, Italy, where holds the Jean Monnet Chair in Business Law in the European Union and Sustainable Economy. He got his PhD in Business Law from the University of Brescia (2008). Before joining the University of Macerata (2015), he was a Research Fellow at the University of Trento (2008-2009) and the University of Bologna (2015). From 2011 to 2014, he was a Marie Curie & TRENTINO Fellow at the University of Trento, with a grant awarded by the European Commission and the Autonomous Province of Trento. His main research interests are in Company Law, with a special focus on SMEs. He has published several works on company- and enterprise-related topics, mainly in Italian, English, and Portuguese. He is a member of the Editorial Staff of the Journals Giurisprudenza Commerciale and Orizzonti del Diritto Commerciale.

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Aaren Cassidy recently earned her Ed.D. in Leadership and Policy Studies at the University of Memphis. After teaching various elementary grade levels for the past twelve years, she has been newly appointed to the role of Assistant Director at The University of Memphis Campus School. Her current research interests include policies that allow for the state takeover of schools and school districts, specifically in marginalized communities, neoliberalism in education policy, and venture philanthropy. She is also a mother and wife and always treasures spending time with family and friends.

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Elena Codoni is a second-year Ph.D. candidate in “Law and Innovation” at the University of Macerata and the University of Paris Est Créteil, following the joint co-tutorship agreement. Her research project concerns the new role of lucrative companies and focuses on the comparative study of the Italian and French Benefit Corporation models.

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Ninfa Contigiani was a student of prof. Mario Sbriccoli and obtained, in 2004, the title of PhD in History of Law, with a thesis entitled: "Papal penal legislation. From the Gregorian Regulations to the attempts at reform (1831-1857)". Later she was Research Fellow in the History of Medieval and Modern Law continuing to work on the criminal justice of the papal state in the nineteenth century, especially on the centrality of the role of the Pope's judges in the administration of justice itself. Since 2007 she has worked with Prof. Lackey and obtained a post-doctorate, becoming a permanent researcher in the History of Medieval and Modern Law (IUS / 19) in May 2009. At the Faculty of Law of the University of Macerata she was professor of History of Criminal Law in the degree course of Legal Sciences and teaches History of contemporary political and institutional phenomena and History of social legislation in the degree course (three-year and two-year) for the Social services. She is a member of the editorial board of the "Giornale di storia conzionale / Journal of Constitutional History" Macerata, Eum.

Ninfa studied the repression of intra-family blood crimes between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, but for his monograph, since 2011 she has been working on the reasons for blood as an original character of the Italian civil and criminal unification; more generally on blood as a founding element of the juridical-legal construction of the family and citizenship starting from the Kingdom of Italy. In the meantime, she has explored the origins of public assistance and voluntary service within the framework of social legislation of the liberal era, issues that have become a driving force of interest for the Third sector as the protagonist of new social policies, starting with 'codification' of 2017.

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Nestor Davidson joined Fordham Law School in 2011 and was named the Albert A. Walsh Professor of Real Estate, Land Use and Property Law in 2017. Professor Davidson is an expert in property, urban law, and affordable housing law and policy, and is the co-author of the casebook Property Law:  Rules, Policies and Practices (7th ed. 2017).  Professor Davidson founded and serves as the faculty director of the law school’s Urban Law Center and previously served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.

Professor Davidson practiced with the firm of Latham and Watkins, focusing on commercial real estate and affordable housing, and served as Special Counsel and Principal Deputy General Counsel at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Professor Davidson earned his AB from Harvard College and his JD from Columbia Law School. After law school, he clerked for Judge David S. Tatel of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and Justice David H. Souter of the Supreme Court of the United States.

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Professor Ted De Barbieri teaches courses in housing law, state and local government, and community economic development law and directs a transactional skills clinic. His scholarship examines ways the public can engage in land use approvals and economic development activities and how that engagement can lead to reforms in economic and social systems. His articles have appeared or are forthcoming in the Fordham Law Review, Indiana Law Journal, UC Irvine Law Review, George Mason Law Review,  Florida State University Law Review,  Yale Law & Policy Review, Cardozo Law Review,  Fordham Urban Law Journal, and  Journal of Affordable Housing & Community Development Law. He is the author of the 6th edition of  Local Government Law, part of West Academic’s hornbook series.

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Elena De Nictolis biography is Post-Doc researcher at the Department of Political Science ( program) Luiss University (Rome) where she is also Adjunct Professor of Urban Law and Policy (Department of Political Science), Smart Cities and Governance of Innovation and Sustainability (Department of Law). She earned her Phd in Political Theory, Political Science and Political History at Luiss University (Rome, Italy) with a thesis on urban public policies to promote and regulation of urban co-governance of resources, services and infrastructures and on the urban commons more broadly in the Italian context. Her current research interests are the role of cities in the international framework (i.e. city diplomacy and city networking, city science) of the global governance of innovation, health, sustainable development.placeholder


Papon Dev has more than eight years’ of professional experience in Asia, Europe and Africa with universities (Technical University Berlin, Khulna University etc.), consulting firms (Council for Asian Liberal and Democrats, IFC- World Bank etc.), national and international NGOs (Save the Children, Global2030 e.V. etc.), research organizations (Wetland Resource Development Society, Social Activities for Environment, etc.) and public institutions (Khulna City Corporation, Berlin Senate Department for Urban Development and Housing etc.) with completion of his M.Sc. on ‘Urban Development’ from TU Berlin Campus El Gouna and B.Sc. on “Urban & Rural Planning” from Khulna University, Bangladesh.

He is an integrated package who has both academic and practical experience with different spectacles. He is well acknowledged about how to bring practices into academic theories. He has worked not only in Germany, but also with the organizations and firms from Bangladesh, India, Philippines, Egypt, United Kingdom, Netherland, USA etc. He has worked in different urban domains like urban economy, urban sociology, urban ecology, urban resilience, urban agriculture with a specialization in the environmental and social studies. He has numbers of publications in the field of climate change, agriculture, transport planning, urban governance, solid waste management etc.

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Isolde de Villiers works on spatial justice from a feminist perspective. In her doctoral thesis she analysed aspects of spatial inequality in Pretoria/ Tshwane. Her current focus falls on aspects of business and commerce and their intersection within urban spaces. She is interested in overlooked cities of South Africa. She teaches in the department of Mercantile Law at the University of the Free State.

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Paul Diller is a professor of law at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. His professional work focuses on state and local government law and public health law. He has written extensively about state preemption of local authority, as well as the structures underlying that dynamic, such as partisan gerrymandering. More recently, Diller has examined the constitutional and other legal issues that have arisen in states’ and cities’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in their use of emergency authority.

Diller was a participant in the National League of Cities’ Home Rule for the 21st Century Project in 2019-20. In September 2017, Diller authored an amicus brief on behalf of several municipal organizations and local government law professors in Gill v. Whitford, which challenged gerrymandering of state legislative districts.

Diller graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan Law School, both magna cum laude. After law school, he clerked for Chief Judge Edward R. Becker of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He was a trial attorney in the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., where he litigated constitutional, administrative, and Freedom-of-Information-Act cases, among others. In addition to teaching at Willamette, Diller has been a visiting professor at Lewis and Clark Law School (2022), the University of Michigan Law School (2008), and also taught in Willamette’s summer program at the East China University of Political Science and Law in Shanghai in 2013.

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Vivian Caroline Dombrowski has Master's degrees in Urban and Environmental Law (Federal University of Santa Catarina), a Specialist degree in Environmental Law, and a Law Degree (Pontifical Catholic University of Paraná). She has dedicated her researching in the Right to the City, Environmental and Urban Law, Housing and Urban Mobility with dozens of published articles. She works as a legal consultant with public and private institutions. She is  a speaker and has taught for a long time. She also runs the "Muda Cidade" (Change the City), which shares information and free content about cities on Instagram and Facebook. She repudiates any kind of prejudice or intolerance and she fights for equal rights and accessibility. Beyond her professional choice, she is also a Pastry Chef, Surface Designer, amateur triathlete, passionate about arts and nature, and tutor of a black Labrador named Nina. 

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Adam Feibelman's teaching and research focus on bankruptcy law, regulation of financial institutions, legal issues related to sovereign debt and international monetary law. His recent and current work explores the relationship between bankruptcy and financial regulation, monetary sovereignty, India’s new insolvency and bankruptcy system, and the IMF’s legal framework. He joined the Tulane faculty in 2009. Prior to that, he was a faculty member at the University of North Carolina School of Law and University of Cincinnati School of Law.

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Chiara Feliziani is Associate Professor of Administrative Law at the School of Law, University of Macerata. Here she holds courses of Environmental Law, Administrative Law and Administrative Justice. In 2013 she got a Ph.d in Public Law of Economics at the Faculty of Economics of La Sapienza University of Rome. Her final dissertation has been awarded as “Best Ph.d Thesis 2014” (prize held by La Sapienza).

Chiara has spent several periods of research abroad. In 2011 she was visiting research fellow at the School of Law of the King’s College (London) and in 2012 she carried on her studies at the European University Institute (Florence), while in 2014 and in 2017 she was visiting scholar at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (London). Finally, in 2016 she was visiting scholar at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law (Heidelberg).

She is the author of several articles in the field of Adminsitrtive Law, Administrative Justice, Public Law and Environmental Law, as well as of two books Tutela ambientale e servizio pubblico. Il caso della gestione dei rifiuti in Italia e in Inghilterra (Sapienza University Press, Rome 2014) and Giustizia amministrativa, amministrazione e ordinamenti giuridici. Tra diritto nazaionale, diritto dell’Unione europea e Cedu (Editoriale scientifica, Napoli, 2018).

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Professor Alexandra Flynn’s teaching and research focus on municipal law and governance, administrative law, property law, and experiential education. She has published numerous peer-reviewed papers, public reports, media articles, and a book on how cities are legally understood in law and how they govern, including the overlapping geographies and governance of city spaces, and the formal and informal bodies that represent residents. She is currently working on a SSHRC-funded project which seeks to understand the legal relationship between First Nations and municipal governments, illuminating the legal obligations of municipal governments to consult and accommodate First Nations and Indigenous peoples. She is also working on several projects related to precariously housed people in Canadian cities, including the governance of personal property of precariously housed people, and human rights and tent encampments.

Professor Flynn has a long history working in law and policy. Prior to entering academia, she practiced banking and securities law at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy in New York, where she was the recipient of several Legal Aid awards. She also practiced Aboriginal Law at Ratcliff & Company in Vancouver, representing First Nations, and worked in a senior policy role at the City of Toronto focused on intergovernmental relationships.

Professor Flynn is a past TEDx speaker and a frequent media commentator. She has a long history of volunteer work in the areas of homelessness and access to justice.

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Sarah Fox is an associate professor at Northern Illinois University College of Law. Her research focuses on environmental law and land use, particularly the unique environmental issues facing cities and the capacity that local governments may have to solve those problems. In consequence, her work has highlighted the importance of local action on a variety of environmental health and safety issues, and, necessarily, the preemption barriers that often face local governments trying to take that kind of action. Prof. Fox previously worked as a clinical teaching fellow in the environmental law clinic at Georgetown University Law Center, where she represented numerous non-profit organizational clients and supervised student work on cases addressing environmental issues in state and federal court, and was also a litigation associate in the New York offices of Jones Day and Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP.

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Aviv Gaon is a senior lecturer at the Harry Radzyner Law School, Reichman University (IDC Herzliya). He holds a Ph.D. from Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, and LL.B (Cum Laude) and LL.M from Reichman University. His work in the area of intellectual property and technology earned him the IP Osgoode David Vaver Medal for Excellence in IP Law in 2019. In 2019-2020, Dr. Gaon was a Post-Doc Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at the University of Toronto. Dr. Gaon is a research fellow at IP Osgoode Center for Intellectual Property and Technology at Osgoode Hall Law School, and in 2019 he joined the Intellectual Property Journal (IPJ) editorial board – a leading Canadian journal for intellectual property and technology research. Dr. Gaon is also a member of the Bracing for Impact Artificial Intelligence Challenge conference series organizing committee. These conferences facilitate legal discussions about Canadian tech policy and attract academic scholars, tech companies, and government leaders. The Bracing for Impact conferences is supported by Canada Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). Dr. Gaon's scholarship focuses on Intellectual Property, Law & Technology and Competition Law. His publications address the legal implications of emerging technologies, intellectual property, and artificial intelligence.

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Douglas Harris joined the Allard School of Law in 2001. He teaches in the areas of property law and legal history, and his research focuses on the history of the regulation of the Aboriginal fisheries in British Columbia and on the nature of property ownership within condominium.  His earlier published work includes studies of Aboriginal rights to fish in Canada and analysis of systems for registering interests in land. Recent public lectures include "Condominium & the Country: The Sprawl of Property in British Columbia" and "Property and Sovereignty: The Kitsilano Indian Reserve and the City of Vancouver". He presented "Condominium Property Stories" in his Inaugural Lecture as a professor at the Allard School of Law. 

After completing his B.A. (UBC History) and LL.B. (Toronto), Harris articled in Vancouver and was called to the British Columbia bar in 1994. He returned to school to complete LL.M. (UBC) and PhD (Osgoode Hall, York University) degrees in legal history. Harris served as Associate Dean Graduate Studies & Research in the Law School, 2008-2013, and he is currently Chair of the UBC Press Publications Board. In 2016, he received the law school’s Faculty Scholar Award.

In 2013, Professor Harris received the George Curtis Memorial Award for Teaching Excellence, the Faculty's annual teaching award. He is also a co-author of the leading property law casebook in Canada, A Property Law Reader, 4th Ed. Professor Harris is currently supervising LLM and PhD students working in property law, Aboriginal law and legal history, and welcomes other students to apply in these and other areas of his research interest.

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Yifat Holzman-Gazit is a Professor of Law at the Haim Striks Faculty of Law at the College of Management Academic Studies, Israel. Her primary research and teaching interests are in land use regulation, law of the urban forest, land expropriation and property law. She received her JSD from Stanford Law School (1997) and has ben a visiting professor at Stanford Law School (2007-2008) and a Senior Michigan Grotius Research Scholar at University of Michigan Law School. Her most recent article on "The Tragedy of Private Trees in the City" won the Yaacov Ne'eman Prize for the best article in the Bar-Ilan University Law Review (2022). 

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Christian Iaione is Associate Professor of Public Law at Luiss University (Rome, Italy) where he teaches urban law and policy; land use; regulatory innovation; research and innovation and finance procurement; law and policy of innovation and sustainability (with Sofia Ranchordas). At Luiss he is also deputy director of the research center BILL-Blockchain, artificial Intelligence and digital innovation Law Lab, coordinator of the innovation area of the Luiss School of Law, faculty co-director of the graduate course in Law, Digital Innovation and Sustainability, and faculty co-director of LabGov – LABoratory for the GOVernance of the City as a Commons (, coordinator of the Horizon2020 Open Heritage and EUARENAS projects. He earned an LL.M. in Government Economic Regulation at NYU School of Law and received his PhD in European and Comparative Public Administration at Sapienza Business School. In 2006-2007 he was the Emile Noël Fellow at NYU School of Law Jean Monnet Center. In 2007-2008 he was visiting scholar at the Rudin Center for Transportation Policy and Management of the NYU Wagner School of Public Service. Christian has published several articles in the field of public and administrative law and, in particular, land use, public goods and the commons, public services and public contracts, urban law and local government. He has authored two books, has co-authored three others. He is completing a book manuscript (co-authored with Sheila Foster) entitled Co-Cities Empowering Equitable and Self-Sustaining Communities Through Land and Resource Stewardship (MIT Press, forthcoming 2021) and a monography The Law of Urban Communities (Jovene, forthcoming 2021). aione’s current research focus is on the governance of the commons, in particular urban commons and knowledge commons, sharing economy, collaborative economy, social innovation, social housing, innovation procurement, AI and public law, public-commons and public-private-commons partnerships.

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Il-Young Jung is an Assistant-Professor at the University of Ulsan in Ulsan, South Korea. He received a Bachelor's and Master's degree from Seoul National University and an S.J.D. degree from Harvard Law School. His research interests include Korean constitutional law, comparative constitutional law, legal history, and East Asian legal studies.

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Kizito Kabengele holds a BA - Law, LLB from the University of Lubumbashi, an LLM from the UNISA and he is currently undertaking his LLD - doctoral studies at the University of Pretoria. He is a research associate and, as a human rights activist, seated on many NGO boards. He has presented papers at conference both on the African continent and abroad. He has published articles and a book on political rights and the right to vote. He is a member of international lawyer associations and networks. His research interest is in socio-economic rights, equality, right to vote, democracy, law and development, law and religion, international law, international human rights and corporate social responsibility. He is a member of several research and academic networks and also serves as a board member on various NGOs. He is also an admitted Advocate of the High Court of South Africa and work as a legal practitioner. He may be reached at

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Masahiko Kinoshita is the Professor of Constitutional Law at the Kobe University Graduate School of Law (2011-). His research interests lie in Japanese constitutional law, comparative constitutional law, local government law, and information law. His work has appeared in leading Japanese law journals, and he serves as the editorial director of constitutional law casebooks used by major law schools in Japan. Masahiko received a B.A. in International Relations (2004) and a J.D. (2007) from the University of Tokyo. After graduate law school, he worked as an assistant professor (2007-2009) and a lecturer at the University of Tokyo (2009-2011). He was also a visiting scholar at Harvard Law School, East Asian Legal Studies (2019-2020). 

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Dr. Evaldas Klimas is associate professor at Mykolas Romeris University. He teaches Real Estate and Construction law. Dr. Klimas graduated from Vilnius University back in 2005 and he was the first to defend his thesis in the area of construction law in Lithuania back in 2011. Since then, he gives lectures to real estate market professionals (developers, architects, urban planners, public officials) related to legal regulations on zoning, planning and construction. He also publishes articles and is author of several books on the field of his expertise.  For example, the Commentary on the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Territorial Planning (2017) is a fundamental work, which was warmly met by other professionals as a piece not analyzing difficult doctrine problems, but also as a tool helping to work for market professionals.

His fields of research and interest are: Territorial Planning Law and Construction Law, Land Law, Environmental Law, Protection of Property Rights, Defence of the Public Interest.

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Professor Hoi Kong is the inaugural holder of The Rt. Hon. Beverley McLachlin, P.C., UBC Professorship in Constitutional Law, which he assumed in 2018.  He is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin’s Program on Comparative Constitutional Studies and a Peter Wall Scholar (2020-2021).  He researches and teaches in the areas of constitutional, administrative, municipal and comparative law, and constitutional and public law theory.

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Pamela Lattanzi: Full Professor of Agricultural Law (IUS / 03) at the Department of Law / Principal Investigator for Unimc of the European project ALICE: AcceLerate Innovation in urban wastewater management for Climate changE, funded by the European Union under the Horizon 2020 program - Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions - Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE). / Member of the teaching staff of the PhD in Legal Sciences, Curriculum in Institutions and territory in the national, European and international dimension and in Law and Innovation (cycle XXXV), University of Macerata. / Member of the editorial board of the magazine Agriculture, Institutions, Markets - Franco Angeli editore. / Founding member of the spin-off of the University of Macerata International Route srl , active in the business internationalization sector (Chairman of the Board of Directors from December 2014 to May 2018).

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Nathanael Lauster is an Associate Professor of Sociology at UBC and sometime demographer who primarily studies housing, home, households, cities, and urban regulation. He is the award-winning author of The Death and Life of the Single Family House: Lessons from Vancouver on Building a Livable Cit and Principle Investigator (with Jens von Bergmann) of the CMHC-funded Metro Vancouver Zoning Project. He also runs the blog

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Dr. Ronit Levine-Schnur is a senior lecturer at the Harry Radzyner Law School, and a research associate at the G-City Institute for Real Estate at Reichman University (formerly IDC Herzliya). She is a lawyer, an urban planner, and a property and land use law expert. Dr. Levine-Schnur is mostly interested in studying and measuring the effects of regulatory and other legal mechanisms on the socio-spatial distribution of social and economic burdens and benefits and on the effects of social and economic factors on decision-making processes. Her current research project focuses on the effects of expropriations of private property and land use reforms on housing prices. Her research appeared in journals such as Journal of Legal Studies, Law and Social Inquiry, and the Oxford Journal of Legal Studies. Dr. Levine-Schnur is the Scientific Advisor for the "Dissensus: Legislation, Planning, Architecture" exhibition currently presented at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.

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Alessandra Lucaioli graduated in 2012 in Philosophical Sciences at the University of Macerata where in 2017 she obtained her PhD in Human Sciences - Philosophy, History of Philosophy and Human Sciences curriculum with a thesis entitled: Rethinking living smart: the contribution of the spatial justice paradigm. She has carried out research at the Open University in Mylton Keynes in the Department of Geography and Social Sciences and in 2019 she obtained the Masters in Narrative Medicine, Communication and Ethics of Care. Her research interests focus on two poles: the ethical and political impact of new technologies, with particular attention to the spatial and territorial dimension, and; the philosophical practice of communities, which since 2018 is part of a research and action group promoted by the University of Macerata. Alessandra is currently a scholar of the subject for the professorships of moral philosophy, philosophy of living and political philosophy.

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Serena Mariani is a lawyer dedicated to agricultural, food and wine law. She earned a Ph.D. cum laude in Legal Sciences with applied research on plant variety protection in the European Union. At the University of Macerata, Serena is a Lecturer in agri-food law and a postdoctoral research fellow on the topic "New plant varieties and seed security: the role of agricultural innovation for sustainable food systems".

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Kathleen Morris is a Professor of Law at Golden Gate University, and has taught at Yale, Berkeley, and Rutgers law schools. In 2006 she co-founded the still-operating San Francisco Affirmative Litigation Project at Yale Law School. She specializes in Constitutional Law, State and Local Government Law, Public Lawyering, and Legal Education. Publications include: Rebel Cities, Bully States: A New Preemption For An Anti-Racist, Pro-Democracy Localism, Howard Law Journal (forthcoming 2022); Legal Education, Democracy, and the Urban Core, in Legal Scholarship for the Urban Core (2018); Cities Seeking Justice: Local Government Litigation in the Public Interest, in How Cities Will Save The World (2016); Expanding Local Enforcement Of State And Federal Consumer Protection Laws, 40 Forham Urban L. J. 1903 (2013); The Case for Local Constitutional Enforcement, 47 Harv. C.R.-C.L. L. Rev. 1 (2012); and San Francisco and the Rising Culture of Engagement in Local Public Law Offices, in Why The Local Matters:  Federalism, Localism, and Public Interest Advocacy (2010). Before academia, Professor Morris served for a decade as a deputy city attorney for San Francisco, where she was lead counsel in more than one hundred cases, including the city's constitutional challenges to California's marriage laws. She has a J.D. from U.C. Berkeley Law School; a Masters in Politics from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland; and a B.A. from California State University, Northridge, where she was a first-generation college student. After law school she served as a law clerk to Sidney R. Thomas, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

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Ivan Mugabi is currently a Fulltime Lecturer at King Ceasor University, Bunga, Kampala Uganda; he occasionally serves as a Supervisor of Masters Students in Oil and Gas Students at Kampala Petroleum Institute. His education background includes a Master of Philosophy from Cardiff University with the School of Law and Politics, a Human Rights Law from Cardiff University, UK Wales, a Master’s of International Commercial Law (LLM) - University of Glamorgan, UK, Wales, and Bachelor LLB (Hons) from Uganda Christian University: Mukono, Uganda. He likes research and publishing as a means of advancing new epistemological discourses.

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Dr. Prashant Narang is Senior Fellow - Research and Training Programs at Centre for Civil Society (CCS) - a think-tank based in New Delhi, India. At CCS, his research work focuses on regulations governing street vending and low-fee private schools. He co-conceptualized the Street Vendor Act Compliance Index to track the implementation of the Street Vendor Act of 2014, contributed to all three editions of the index (2017, 2019 and 2020) and co-created the state SV rules matrix and the states schemes matrix. As a lawyer, he has represented street vendors at various courts - from Metropolitan Magistrate to the Supreme Court, challenging the undue eviction and arbitrary penalties. His current interest areas are urban governance and livelihood freedom.  

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Steven L. Nelson is an associate professor of education policy and leadership at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He earned his J.D. from the University of Iowa College of Law and his Ph.D. from the Education Policy Studies Department at the Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Nelson’s research agenda focuses on the intersection of education law, education policy, and the politics of education as those subject matters address civil rights, race, and urbanicity. Most recently, much of his work considers the ways in which Black and Brown communities experience the rollbacks of civil and human rights as a result of the unilateral reconstitution (state takeover) of public schools and school districts.  

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Valentina Pagnanelli is a PhD student at the University of Florence. She has been a Research Fellow on the theme “The Impact Of The General Data Protection Regulation On Local Administrations In The Metropolitan City Of Florence “ (2018-2019). She also works as a lawyer and she holds a Privacy Consultant certification issued by TÜV. Member of the Association of Urban Legal Scholars (A.U.L.S.). Her work is focused on data protection and Smart cities.

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Giacomo Pailli is an Adjunct Professor of the University of Florence where he teaches comparative law. He holds a PhD in comparative law (2013), University of Florence; and a LL.M. (2011), New York University School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in Italy and in the State of New York. Member of the International Association of Urban Legal Scholars; International Association of Procedural Law; European Law Institute; and Italian Society for the Research and Study of Comparative Law (SIRD).

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On November 8, 2021, Ngai Pindell began a five-year term as Dean of the Peter A. Allard School of Law. Dean Pindell received his A.B. (Economics) in 1993 from Duke University and his J.D. in 1996 from Harvard Law School. Following graduation, he practiced community development law in Baltimore, MD, followed by a fellowship and visiting assistant professorship at the University of Baltimore School of Law Community Development Clinic. He joined the William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) in 2000 as an Assistant Professor and earned promotion to Professor in 2008. His research and teaching interests are in the areas of property law, wills and trusts, affordable housing, community development, and local government law.

At UNLV, Dean Pindell has held a number of academic administrative roles, most recently as Vice Provost and Special Advisor to the Executive Vice President and Provost from January to July 2019. He also served as Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs (2016-2018), and as Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and then Vice Dean in the Boyd School of Law (2012-2016).

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Rui Marques Pinto holds a master's degree in human rights and social work from the University of Göteborg, Sweden. From 2015-2020 he was an elected representative by the council of Reutlingen, a city in the southern German state of Baden Württemberg. During this time, he worked with elected politicians to analyze and implement sustainable solutions to improve the integration of refugees and immigrants living in the city. This improvement, which held human dignity at the center of all evaluation, had two objectives: to ameliorate existing practices (those that have given good results), and; find the best practices that fit international human rights policies, without going against the German constitution.

Rui is currently a member of the board of "Partnerschaft Demokratie Leben", a German government-funded agency which aims to implement activities from the civilian population that are aligned to tackle discrimination. Accordingly, he is the founder of "Projekt Demokratie Cafe Reutlingen" with the aim of finding the best practices, framed on human dignity through events with the participation of civil society and the private and public sectors. Rui's academic interests are: dialectic between constitution and race, law and race, criminology, inequality intersection with meritocracy and justice, and immigrant integration policies. You may contact Rui at, and his published articles may be found  on ResearchGate and  Independent Researcher.

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Michael Pollack is a Professor of Law at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. Before joining the Cardozo faculty, Professor Pollack served as a Bigelow Fellow at the University of Chicago Law School. He also worked as a Trial Attorney in the Federal Programs Branch of the U.S. Department of Justice, defending major legislative and regulatory initiatives from constitutional and statutory challenges. Professor Pollack clerked for Justice Sonia Sotomayor of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge Janice Rogers Brown of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Professor Pollack graduated with a J.D. summa cum laude from the New York University School of Law and with a B.A. with highest honors from Swarthmore College. He teaches and publishes research primarily in the areas of property law, land use regulation, state and local government law, and administrative law. 

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Chetana R has completed her M.Arch in Landscape Architecture in 2019 from School of Architecture- Ramaiah Institute of Technology. In 2016, she completed B.Arch from Acharya’s NRV School of Architecture, Visvesvaraya Technological University. She has 4+ years’ experience having worked as a junior Landscape Architect in Site Concepts International Pvt Ltd, Bengaluru, Assistant Professor at BGS School of Architecture and Planning, Bengaluru. Her other experiences include Internships at CR Narayana Rao Consultants Pvt Ltd, Bengaluru, Zoras- Landscape Urbanism Design, Bengaluru, and as a freelance landscape architect along with guiding and training pre- university students at soft skills.

Chetana, in May 2020, co-developed ‘CIANKI Associates’ in Bengaluru. Her interests are in the fields of landscape architecture, urban design, landscape urbanism, environmental design, housing design, research. She is also an ultimate frisbee player and a sports enthusiast.

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Nikhil Ravindra has completed M. Sc in Urban Development in 2019 from TU Berlin, Germany with DAAD (German Federal Government) Scholarships securing ‘Urban Development Award’ for a very good Master’s thesis. In 2016, he completed B. Arch from Acharya’s NRV School of Architecture (Visvesvaraya Technological University) securing ‘University Third Rank’ and ‘Best Outgoing Student’ awards. 
He has 6+ years’ experience having worked as a Landscape Architect in Zoras, Architectural Consultant in Studio 69, and as an Independent Researcher. His other global experiences include a Student Assistant job at Habitat-Unit Germany, an Internship at Mimar Group in UAE, and participating in internationally funded summer schools/training in South Africa, Bosnia – Herzegovina, Hungary, and Romania. Nikhil, mostly through fundings has presented papers in international conferences held in Belgium, India, and Malaysia; and has several research publications (11 in total). In Oct 2018, he co-founded a startup project idea ‘MAQAAD’ in Cairo (Egypt), and in May 2020, co-developed ‘CIANKI Associates’ in Bengaluru. His interests are in the fields of innovation, environmental design, climate change & sustainable cities.
His recent achievements include ‘Young Achiever Award 2021 – 22’ by A3F (Architecture, Art and Aesthetics Foundation), Chandigarh and First Position in the ‘COA Annual International Essay Writing Competition 2021’ (under Teachers in Schools of Architecture Category) organized by Council of Architecture – Training & Research Centre, Pune.

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Dr. Philipp Renninger is an affiliated postdoctoral researcher at Lund University’s Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies (Sweden). Philipp’s first research focus lies on comparative public law, contrasting Chinese constitutional and administrative law with European and particularly German-speaking countries. His second research interest consists in Chinese and comparative legal theory and philosophy. Moreover, Philipp works as an analyst for the consulting firm China Macro Group in Zurich (Switzerland), where he analyzes China’s and European countries’ regulations and public policy. Philipp holds a dual-degree PhD in law from the Universities of Freiburg (Germany) and Lucerne (Switzerland). Previously, he read for the German First Exam in Law at Freiburg as well as studied Chinese law and language at the University of Nanjing (China). Beginning in August, he will be a one-year Visiting Scholar at Harvard Law School’s East Asian Legal Studies program.

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Dr. Graham J. Reynolds is an Associate Professor and the Associate Dean, Research and International at the Peter A. Allard School of Law at the University of British Columbia. His research focus is the intersection of intellectual property and human rights, as well as the relationship between intellectual property and social justice. Before joining the Allard School of Law, Graham was a member of faculty at Dalhousie University's Schulich School of Law, where he was the Co-Editor in Chief of the Canadian Journal of Law and Technology and served as a member of the Schulich School of Law’s Law and Technology Institute. Graham completed his DPhil at the at the University of Oxford, where he studied on a Rhodes Scholarship, a Pierre Elliott Trudeau Scholarship, and a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Doctoral Award. Graham is a recipient of several teaching awards, including a UBC Killam Teaching Prize as well as the Allard School of Law’s annual teaching award, the George Curtis Memorial Award for Teaching Excellence. Among other affiliations, Graham has been a visiting professor at the University of Bern in Switzerland.

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Prof. Marc Lane Roark is the Louisiana Outside Counsel of Health and Ethics Endowed Professor of Law at the Southern University Law Center, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. He is also a Senior Fellow with the Native American Law and Policy Institute, a think-tank dedicated to policies relating to Native American tribes in the U.S. and first nations in Canada. Professor Roark holds an affiliated appointment at the University of Pretoria as a Research Associate Professor. He is also a member of the EVICT research network, a collaborative group of worldwide scholars researching and collaborating on affordable housing issues.  Professor Roark serves on the Advisory Panel for the UNESCO Housing Chair at the Universitat Rovira I Virilli, in Tarragona Spain; and is a founding member of the Resilient Property Research Network with members across Europe, the U.K., the U.S. and Africa. During the 2022-2023 academic year, Professor Roark will be working with Emory University’s Vulnerability Initiative as a Research fellow, the University of Adelaide as a visiting researcher in residence, and National Irish University-Galway as a Visiting Researcher in Residence. Professor Roark’s research primarily considers how narratives and norms are scaled in Property conflicts around housing. Together with Lorna Fox O’Mahony (University of Essex) he is the author of Squatting and the State: Resilient Property Theory in an Age of Crisis.  His primary areas of work are in the study of resilience gaps in housing and homelessness through the lens of property norms. 

Daniel Rosenbaum is an incoming assistant professor at Michigan State University College of Law (as of August 2022), where he will teach Local Government and Property. His research explores issues of ill-defined local power, the realm of local public land management, and how local government institutions function and change over time.

Professor Rosenbaum joins Michigan State University from the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, where he was a visiting assistant professor in the fields of Property, Local Government, and Estates & Trusts. He entered academia after holding positions as general counsel and executive director for a governmental authority that manages distressed public property in the Detroit region and assists local municipalities on issues of divestment, land ownership, and development. Professor Rosenbaum is a graduate of Harvard Law School. Prior to moving to Michigan, Professor Rosenbaum gained local government experience in the public and private sectors and clerked for Judge Nanette K. Laughrey of the United States District Court. 

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Professor Matthew Rossman joined Case Western Reserve University's law faculty in 2004. He coordinates and co-teaches the Community Development Clinic, through which third-year law students provide corporate counsel and transactional law services to community-based nonprofit organizations and sustainable business ventures in the Cleveland area.

Rossman also created and teaches the Urban Development Lab. The UDL functions as a law and policy laboratory that examines strategies for the redevelopment and revitalization of urban areas. Students research and prepare reports on topics identified by local nonprofit development organizations. Most recently, the lab has prepared reports on tax increment financing, land banks, vacant property ordinances and tangled title issues.

Rossman has published several law review articles on tax exempt organizations and the use of tax subsidies at all levels of government to improve conditions in distressed housing and economic markets.  He is also a frequent speaker on legal issues that affect nonprofit organizations and small businesses. He is admitted to practice in Ohio.

Prior to arriving at Case Western Reserve, Rossman taught at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Baltimore. He began his career in private practice with the New York offices of Latham & Watkins and Christy & Viener. His practice areas included corporate, securities, real estate, tax and nonprofit law.

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Aaron Saiger is Professor of Law at Fordham Law School, where he has taught since 2003, and where he was the Dean’s Distinguished Research Scholar from 2017–18.  He writes and teaches in the areas of administrative law, education law, and local government. Saiger has been a Spencer Foundation/National Academy of Education Postdoctoral Fellow (2006–07) and a Research Fellow at Columbia Law School (2002–03). He received his Ph.D. from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and his J.D. from Columbia University.  He was law clerk to the Honorable Ruth Bader Ginsburg of the United States Supreme Court (2001–02) and the Honorable Douglas H. Ginsburg of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (2000–01). His book manuscript, Schoolhouse in the Cloud, to be published by the Oxford University Press, is in progress.

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Trained in Israel (Tel-Aviv University, LLB, LLM) and the U.S. (Northwestern University, Chicago, LLM, SJD), Prof. Guy Seidman has been on faculty at the Reichman University (formerly, IDC Herzliya), Israel, Harry Radzyner School of Law since 1999. Prof. Seidman's fields or study are administrative law, comparative legal systems, and the wide cross between the two. The paper presented at this conference, like its predecessors, is part of a book project on Autonomous Vehicles, co-authored with Dr. Aviv Gaon.

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Nadav Shoked is professor of law at Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law. He joined the Northwestern faculty in 2012 as an Assistant Professor of Law. Previously, he was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Texas School of Law. His work focuses on the law and theory of property, on local government law, and on American regulatory law.

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Robert Sroka is a Lecturer in Sport Management at Northumbria University. He completed his PhD in Sport Management at the University of Michigan and earned a Master of Laws (LLM) from the University of Michigan Law School. Robert’s PhD work focused on the use of tax increment financing in North American stadium and arena projects, as well as real estate development ancillary to these venues. Prior to academia, Robert practiced local government law in Vancouver and Calgary, and remains a called Barrister and Solicitor in British Columbia and Alberta. Robert also holds a Juris Doctor and BA (Hons) in Political Science from the University of British Columbia.

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Geeta Tewari is an assistant professor of law at Widener University Delaware Law School. She received her B.A. from Cornell University, her J.D. from Fordham Law School, and her M.F.A. in Writing from Columbia University School of the Arts, and teaches and writes as an interdisciplinary legal scholar in the areas of contract law, professional responsibility, gender and racial equity, and justice. Her most recent publications include Law and the New Urban Agenda (Routledge 2020) with endorsement by UN-Habitat Executive Director Maimunah Mohd Sharif, The Ethics of Gender Narratives for U.S. Corporate Boards [16 N.Y.U. J. L. & B. 221 (2019)], and Formality and Geopolitics, two sociopolitical poems in Michigan Quarterly Review.

Following law school graduation, Professor Tewari clerked for New York State Supreme Court Justice Jaime A. Rios. She thereafter practiced with New York City’s Office of Corporation Counsel and the Washington D.C. Office of the Attorney General. She is admitted to practice law in New York, New Jersey, and Washington, D.C.

She also served as the Director of the Urban Law Center at Fordham Law School, where she launched the Women in Urban Law Leadership Initiative and collaborated with UN-Habitat on projects focused on urban planning laws. In 2019, she was a Visiting Artist Scholar at the American Academy in Rome, and founded the Narrative Justice Project, with non-profit status through the New York Foundation for the Arts, to support collaboration between artists and lawyers for dialogue vital to justice and humanity.

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Simona Tiribelli is a research fellow in Moral Philosophy and Ph.D. candidate in Global Studies. Justice, Rights, Politics at the University of Macerata (Italy). Former Fulbright fellow in Ethics of Artificial Intelligence (AI) at the MIT Media Lab (MIT, U.S.), she is Director for Ethics at the MIT-Harvard Institute for Technology and Global Health (Boston, U.S) and also AI Ethicist at PathCheck Foundation, a spin-off from MIT focused on developing digital solutions to help contain the COVID-19 pandemic while preserving privacy, individual rights, and civil liberties. Her expertise is on the moral questions raised by artificial intelligence and the ethical dimension of algorithms-based technology.

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Laura Vagni is full professor of Comparative Private Law at the University of Macerata, Department of Law, where she teaches Comparative Legal Systems, Comparative Private Law and Comparative Law and International Contracts. Professor Vagni is a member of the teaching staff of the PhD course in Law and Innovation and a member of the CAR-12 Research Area Committee. She is a delegate of the Director of the Department of Law for Libraries and the CASB. Her main scientific interest is aimed at comparative and European private law, with particular regard to the issues of property, trusts law, contract law and the protection of trust. Professor Vagni participates in international research groups on the topics of healthy and active aging, environmental sustainability and the impact of new technologies on the law. new technologies on law.

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Jens von Bergmann holds a Ph.D. in mathematics and is the president of MountainMath, a Vancouver based data analytics and visualization company focused on the intersection of demographics, housing and transportation data and analysis.

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After a master in Law and Innovation (Sciences Po, Paris) and in Law and Digital Technologies (University of Leiden, Netherlands), Astrid Voorwinden is currently completing a PhD at the University of Groningen (Netherlands). They research the public-private partnerships that structure smart city projects, and are more broadly interested in how to embed and protect public values in new technologies.

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Peter Waldkirch is a research lawyer with OnPoint Legal Research based in Vancouver, British Columbia, where he provides opinions and appellate advocacy support to lawyers across the province. He obtained his LL.B. from the University of Ottawa, after which he articled with the Department of Justice Canada, clerked with the British Columbia Court of Appeal, and then practiced commercial litigation. Prior to law, he received an M.A. in musicology from McGill University. 

Along with Mr. Justice Crerar of the British Columbia Supreme Court, Peter co-authored the recently released Annotated British Columbia Limitation Act.

In addition to his research practice, Peter is currently completing an LL.M. at the University of British Columbia. His thesis is on legislative interventions by senior levels of government in municipal restrictions on housing supply, such as is currently underway in California. 

Peter is a director of Abundant Housing Vancouver, a volunteer advocacy group that focuses on housing scarcity in Vancouver. He is a close follower of Vancouver housing policy and frequently live-tweets (@pwaldkirch) city council meetings to raise awareness of housing issues.

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Joycelyn M. Wesley biography placeholder 

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Stepan Wood is Professor, Canada Research Chair in Law, Society & Sustainability and Director of the Centre for Law & the Environment at the Peter A. Allard School of Law, University of British Columbia, on the traditional, ancestral and unceded land of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skxwú7mesh (Squamish) and səlil̓wətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) peoples. His research and teaching cover a range of topics related to law, society and sustainability including environmental law, climate change, rights of nature, corporate responsibility and transnational social and environmental governance. In 2020 he led a team conducting pro bono research into public health responses to homeless encampments during the COVID-19 pandemic and filed an expert affidavit in opposition to an injunction to clear an encampment from government-owned land in Vancouver. This led him to conduct the first exhaustive critical study of the BC courts’ approach to homeless encampment injunctions, elements of which he will present at this conference.

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Guanchi Zhang is an S.J.D. Candidate at Harvard Law School. Working at the intersection of law, urban studies, and the political economy, he employs mixed methods to investigate how critical urban institutions - such as metropolitan government, land use, and school district - produce power and inequality in China, East Asia, and the U.S. His doctorate dissertation aims to historically explain the massive boundary redrawing of Chinese major cities and its implication for China's political economy. His second area of study looks at urban law and political economy, with a focus on the interplay between institutions and inequality. 

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8th Annual

International and Comparative Urban Law Conference

Thursday, July 14 - Saturday, July 16, 2022

Peter A. Allard School of Law - University of British Columbia

Allard Hall, 1822 E Mall 

Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1


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