UCLA Law's International and Comparative Law Program is one of the best in the nation. An expansive law faculty, course offerings, colloquia and symposia, student-edited journals, an exciting International Human Rights Program, externships, study abroad and a broad community of interested students (including foreign law students) constitute a rich milieu in which to learn about the field.


Outstanding legal scholars and diverse international visitors make UCLA Law a focal point for scholarship and interdisciplinary study in public and private international law and in comparative law. Faculty members include:

Khaled Abou El Fadl, Omar and Azmeralda Alfi Professor of Law, is one of the leading authorities in Islamic law in the United States and Europe. Among his many honors and distinctions, Dr. Abou El Fadl was awarded the University of Oslo Human Rights Award, the Leo and Lisl Eitinger Prize in 2007, and named a Carnegie Scholar in Islamic Law in 2005.  He was previously appointed by President George W. Bush to serve on the U.S. Commission for International Religious Freedom, and also served as a member of the Board of Directors of Human Rights Watch.

Asli Bâli, Acting Professor of Law, joined the UCLA faculty from the Yale Law School where she was the Irving S. Ribicoff Fellow in Law and Coordinator of the Middle East Legal Forum. Her research interests focus on public international law generally, including the intersection of international law and international relations, as well as issues of non-proliferation, human rights and humanitarian law.  She also has a strong interest in the comparative law of the Middle East.

Stephen Gardbaum, MacArthur Foundation Professor of International Justice and Human Rights, is a world-renowned scholar of comparative constitutional systems, focusing on Europe and the United States. Born in England, he holds a law degree from Yale. He also holds a Ph.D. in political science and a M.Phil. from Columbia University. He is a solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales and teaches constitutional law, comparative constitutional law, international human rights, European Union law and comparative law.

Máximo Langer, Professor of Law, received his LL.B. from the University of Buenos Aires Law School (1995), where he was editor of the University of Buenos Aires Law Review, was awarded the Fundación Universitaria del Rio de la Plata Fellowship and graduated in the top 1% of his class. He entered the LL.M. program at Harvard Law School in 1998 and then switched to the S.J.D. program. At Harvard, he was awarded several fellowships, including the Edmond J. Safra Graduate Fellowship in Ethics from the Harvard University Center for Ethics and the Professions, a Fellowship of the Center for Studies and Research in International Law and International Relations from The Hague Academy of International Law, and the Fulbright Fellowship.

Neil Netanel, Pete Kameron Professor of Law, teaches and writes in the areas of copyright, free speech, international intellectual property, and telecommunications law and policy. From 1980 to 1981, Netanel was Assistant to the General Counsel of the State of Israel's Environmental Protection Service. He then practiced law at Loeb and Loeb in Los Angeles and at Yigal Arnon & Co. in Tel-Aviv, where he represented Israel's first cable television operator, shepherded numerous joint ventures with Israeli high-tech companies and served on Israel's Ministry of Justice Copyright Law Revision Committee. Since 2008, he has served as faculty director of UCLA's Israel Studies Program.

Richard H. Steinberg, Professor of Law, was a White House trade negotiator and then engaged in the private practice of international trade law. He holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from Stanford, as well as a law degree. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Editor-in-Chief of the Human Rights & International Criminal Law Online Forum, and serves on the editorial boards of the American Journal of International Law and International Organization. He writes and teaches in the areas of international law and international relations, and currently teaches International Trade Law, International Business Transactions and The Human Rights Law and Technology Clinic.  He is also Director of the Sanela Diana Jenkins Human Rights Project.

Kal Raustiala, Professor, UCLA School of Law and UCLA International Institute, Director, UCLA Ronald W. Burkle Center for International Relations, writes and teaches in the areas of international law and international relations. He holds a joint appointment between UCLA Law School and the UCLA International Institute, where he teaches in the Program on Global Studies. He is also director of the UCLA Ronald W. Burkle Center for International Relations, UCLA's primary academic unit that fosters interdisciplinary research and policy-oriented teaching on the role of the United States in global cooperation and conflict, and military, political, social and economic affairs.

Lara Stemple, Director of Graduate Studies, oversees the law school’s LL.M. and S.J.D. degree programs. She teaches a seminar called Human Rights and Sexual Politics, as well as a course on American law for foreign law students. Stemple’s research and advocacy interests focus on human rights, sexual violence, HIV/AIDS and prisons. Before joining UCLA, Stemple was the Executive Director of the human rights organization Stop Prisoner Rape, and she currently serves on the organization’s Board of Directors.  

Katherine Stone, Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Professor of Law, is a leading expert in labor and employment law. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship Award in 2008 and a Russell Sage Fellowship for 2008-2009 for her work on the changing nature of employment and the regulatory implications. Her forthcoming book, Globalization and Flexibilization: The Remaking of the Employment Relationship in the 21st Century, will examine the changing employment landscape in Japan, Australia and Europe. She has served on the United Nations Committee of Experts for its Decent Work Initiative and is the Founder and Editor of the Globalization and Labor Standards (GALS) Bibliographic Archive and Database.

Eric Zolt, Michael H. Schill Professor of Law, is one of the country's most highly regarded international tax law scholars and has written important articles on the development of tax law in Eastern Europe. Working as a representative of the U.S. government, he has consulted with Eastern European countries in developing their tax systems. He continues to serve as a consultant to the Treasury Department, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. In the last 15 years, he has provided tax policy advice in more than 25 countries.

Student involvement opportunities

Study Abroad: Qualified UCLA Law students may spend one semester abroad through the law school's  Foreign Legal Study and Exchange Program (FLSEP).  

Student Journals: UCLA School of Law has three international law journals: The Pacific Basin Law Journal (PBLJ), The Journal of International Law and Foreign Affairs (JILFA)and The Journal of Islamic and Near Eastern Law.

The PBLJ devotes special attention to legal issues that directly affect trade and international transactions in the Pacific Basin. JILFA is an interdisciplinary journal that bridges international law, international economics and international relations. The Journal of Islamic and Near Eastern Law (JINEL) is the first law school journal in the West dealing with this topic. JINEL’s goal is to emphasize and critically analyze all legal issues--social, political, civil, historical, economic and commercial--that are of particular relevance to Muslims and Near Easterners in both Muslim and non-Muslim societies.

International Law Society Symposia: The student-run ILS brings speakers to campus on a wide variety of international topics and puts on at least one major international law conference each year. Recent conferences have featured U.S. Cabinet Secretaries, U.S. & Foreign Ambassadors, judges on international courts and dispute settlement panels, and leading international law scholars from around the world. Topics covered have ranged from evaluating attempts to establish an international criminal court, and the debate about NAFTA to trade and environment in the Americas and China's accession to the World Trade Organization.

Informal lunch speakers series: The international and comparative law dialogue at UCLA has been further advanced by a lunch speaker series. Each month, a leading figure in international law is featured at a brown-bag lunch, providing for informal discussion among students and faculty about cutting-edge questions in international law.

International Externships: Some students participate in a semester-long externship for course credit. Recent international law externships include placements at such U.S. agencies as the Department of Defense, the State Department, and the Agency for International Development in Washington, D.C. as well as in Mexico (Ministry of Trade and Industry).

Opportunities for Interdisciplinary course work, and joint degrees: The study of international and comparative law at UCLA is further strengthened by the opportunity to take a limited number of courses in other UCLA departments. Some of the country's best work in international economics, politics and business occurs at UCLA, and many law students find it valuable to complement their law school work with some course work in other departments. Joint degrees with other departments may also be pursued with the approval of the law school administration.

The UCLA LL.M. Program: is a one-year master's degree program for domestic and foreign students seeking a year of advanced legal studies. The program offers specializations in Business Law, Entertainment, Media and Intellectual Property Law, International and Comparative Law, Public Interest Law, and Law and Sexuality, as well as design-it-yourself specializations in a range of fields. Each year, students from over 30 different countries around the globe attend the program. They are a valuable asset to the international and comparative law dialogue at UCLA School of Law.

The Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.) Program: The Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.) degree program is designed for those seeking to pursue careers as teachers and scholars of law. This highly selective program is open only to applicants who possess a distinguished prior academic record in law, show promise of outstanding scholarship, and demonstrate a high potential for completing a scholarly dissertation of required quality. Applicants must hold a J.D. degree or foreign equivalent and an LL.M. degree (or be enrolled in a program leading to an LL.M. degree). Applications must include or be accompanied by, inter alia, a detailed statement of research purpose and a letter from a UCLA faculty member attesting to the importance of the applicant's proposed research and agreeing to assume full responsibility for supervising the program of study.

For More Information

If you would like more information on International Law at UCLA from current students, feel free to e-mail the Journal of International Law and Foreign Affairs at: jilfa@lawnet.ucla.edu.