Dean's Speaker Series


Join MSU Law for the 2023-2024 Dean’s Speaker Series. The 2023-24 series will bring in four of the world’s foremost experts and greatest minds on regulation, global governance, and artificial intelligence. This diverse group of leading legal thinkers will provide thought-provoking presentations focused on artificial intelligence, law, and society to the Michigan State University community.

2023-2024 SEASON


Jeremiah Smith. Jr., Professor of Law
Harvard Law School
Co-Director of the Berkman Klein Center

The Global Governance of Artificial Intelligence: The Who, The What, and The WhyAnd Does it Matter?”
Wednesday, October 25, 2023
12:15 - 1:15 p.m.

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Ruth L. Okediji is the Jeremiah Smith. Jr, Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and Co-Director of the Berkman Klein Center. A renowned scholar in international intellectual property (IP) law and a foremost authority on the role of intellectual property in social and economic development, Professor Okediji has advised inter-governmental organizations, regional economic communities, and national governments on a range of matters related to technology, innovation policy, and development. Her widely cited scholarship on IP and development has influenced government policies in sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean, Latin America, and South America. Her ideas have helped shape national strategies for the implementation of the WTO’s Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS Agreement). She works closely with several United Nations agencies, research centers, and international organizations on the human development effects of international IP policy, including access to knowledge, access to essential medicines and issues related to indigenous innovation systems.



Tech Diplomat, Deputy Consul General, Head of Science, Technology, and Innovation
Consulate General of Brazil in San Francisco

“The International Governance of AI”
Friday, November 3, 2023
12:15 - 1:15 p.m.

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Tech Diplomat, Deputy Consul General of Brazil in San Francisco. Head of science, technology, and innovation, and focal point for Silicon Valley. Thirty years of professional experience in foreign policy and diplomacy. Ph.D. International Relations. Academic researcher on artificial intelligence and global governance. Former senior adviser to the President of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, 2018-2020.



Edward B. Shils Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science; Director, Penn Program on Regulation
University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School

“Regulating AI Before It Regulates Us – Implications for the Legal Profession and the Practice of Law”
Monday, March 18, 2024
12:15 - 1:15 p.m.

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Cary Coglianese specializes in the study of administrative law and regulatory processes, with an emphasis on the empirical evaluation of alternative processes and strategies and the role of public participation, technology, and business-government relations in policymaking.

The author of more than 200 articles, book chapters, and essays, Coglianese’s most recent book projects have included: Achieving Regulatory Excellence; Does Regulation Kill Jobs?; Regulatory Breakdown: The Crisis of Confidence in U.S. Regulation; Import Safety: Regulatory Governance in the Global Economy; and Regulation and Regulatory Processes. He has also recently written on climate change policy, public participation and transparency in federal rulemaking, the use of artificial intelligence by government agencies, voluntary environmental programs, and role of waivers and exemptions in regulatory law.

The founding director of the Penn Program on Regulation, he previously served as Penn Carey Law’s Deputy Dean for Academic Affairs. Prior to joining the Penn faculty, Coglianese spent a dozen years on the faculty at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government where he taught courses in environmental policy, policy analysis, and research methods, founded and chaired the school’s Regulatory Policy Program, and was an affiliated scholar at the Harvard Law School. He has served as a visiting law professor at Stanford University and Vanderbilt University.



Gregory S. Kavka Distinguished University Professor; John Stephenson Perrin Professor; Arthur F. Thurnau Professor
Department of Philosophy, University of Michigan

“Real Ethics for Artificial Agents”
Friday, April 12, 2024
12:15 - 1:15 p.m.

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Professor Railton's main research has been in ethics and the philosophy of science, focusing especially on questions about the nature of objectivity, value, norms, and explanation. Recently, he has also begun working in aesthetics, moral psychology, and the theory of action. He has a special interest in the bearing of empirical research in psychology and evolutionary theory on these questions. A collection of some of his papers in ethics and meta-ethics, Facts, Values, and Norms, appeared with Cambridge University Press in 2003. He has been a visiting professor at Berkeley and Princeton, and he has received fellowships from the Society for the Humanities (Cornell), the American Council of Learned Societies, the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Humanities Center, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and has been associated with CREA (Paris) and CSMN (Oslo). Professor Railton has been President of the American Philosophical Association, Central Division (2011-12) and is a recipient of the 2009 D'Arms Award for Distinguished Graduate Mentoring in the Humanities. In recent years he has worked and taught with psychologists in a number of fields.