Grants Help Faculty to Curate Scholarly Research

The $5,000 awards can be used to hold scholarly events, such as workshops or symposia.
Grants Help Faculty to Curate Scholarly Research

Thanks to the efforts of the Office of Intellectual Life, currently led by Associate Dean Charlton Copeland, Miami Law faculty can receive funding for their scholarly research. Envisioned initially by Professor Lili Levi, the former associate dean of intellectual life, Copeland has formalized the process by instituting an application process voted on by the intellectual life committee.

"I suspect that Lili and I share a similar vision, which is to democratize intellectual life planning at the law school," said Copeland. "We have an incredibly innovative faculty who do not need me to curate the totality of intellectual and scholarly events. So, the question is how can the associate dean in this space build the institutional capacity to allow faculty to run with ideas that they generate?"

Beginning in the fall semester, the Office of Intellectual Life awarded $5,000 grants to three faculty members — Professors Andrew Elmore and Kunal Parker, and Lecturer in Law and Acting Associate Director of the Human Rights Clinic R. Denisse Cordova Montes.

Elmore hosted a colloquium on "Movements on the Ground: Social Movements and State and Local Law." He invited scholars and community partners to present on various topics, including mobilizing labor law, shifting power to the people, from community bail funds to court watching, relationships and effects of movements and localism, and social movements within state and local law in Miami.  

"The event on local governments and social movements was incredible and was exactly the sort of event that I envisioned for this grant," said Copeland. "It brought together nationally prominent scholars and activists in conversation with a junior faculty member and brought other senior and junior scholars to discuss their work around a common theme." 

Parker used the grant to fund a workshop for his manuscript, "The Turn to Process: American Legal, Political, Economic Thought, 1820 – 1970." Five scholars from around the country participated, sharing their general reactions to the manuscript, and discussing his essays on law, political science, and economics. 

With the assistance of the Intellectual Life grant, Montes, along with Acting Director of the Human Rights Clinic Tamar Ezer, organized a symposium on Food, Housing, and Racial Justice, which was rescheduled to April 13-14, 2023, due to the threat of Hurricane Ian. The symposium will examine lessons and opportunities for addressing hunger and related human rights violations in communities of color.

Along with the Food, Housing, and Racial Justice Symposium this semester, a grant was also awarded to Professor Irwin Stotzky, which is being used to host a symposium on Haiti's colonized people in partnership with the Inter-American Law Review

"If I were to make one wish, it would be that colleagues join together or join with others across the university to coordinate an event," said Copeland. "I will be working with the dean and the budget office to develop a $10,000 grant for a colleague to undertake a more ambitious event than is possible with $5,000, while keeping the $5,000 grants. But I think we have generated lots of interest among colleagues and [the grant] recipients have been quite diverse — senior, junior, and clinical [faculty]."  

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