Faculty Focus is a monthly publication documenting the activities, accomplishments, and honors of the University of Houston Law Center Faculty.

August  2007


Aaron Bruhl presented a paper entitled,”Strategic Judging and the Federal Arbitration Act” at the Texas Junior Legal Scholars Conference in Ft. Worth.


Johnny Rex Buckles’ article, “The Constitutionality of the Monkey Wrench: Exploring the Case for Intelligent Design,” has been published in the Oklahoma Law Review. His article entitled, “Not Even a Peep? The Regulation of Political Campaign Activity by Charities through Federal Tax Law”, has been published in the University of Cincinnati Law Review. An abbreviated version of the statutory proposal advanced in this article was published in Administrative & Regulatory Law News, published by the American Bar Association’s Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice. In June, Professor Buckles presented “Intelligent Design” for the Federalist Society chapter at the Thomas M. Cooley School of Law. In July, Professor Buckles presented “Is the Ban on Participation in Political Campaigns by Charities Essential to their Vitality and Democracy?” at the University of Alabama School of Law’s Summer Scholar Workshop Series. Professor Buckles has also accepted an invitation to serve as a visiting Professor at the Washington and Lee University School of Law for both semesters of the 2007-2008 academic year.


Anne Chandler has been named for a three-year term to the Board of Trustees of the American Immigration Law Foundation, a leading public policy organization in immigration law and reform. During July, she was an invited participant at the Vera Institute of Justice Juvenile Law Conference in San Francisco.


Seth Chandler has created six new demonstrations available at

http://demonstrations.wolfram.com. They are:

  1. Bilateral Accident Model (showing the effect of different legal rules when both tortfeasor and victim can affect the probability of an accident); Constant Elasticity of Substitution Production (co-authored with intern Kevin Balch).
  2. Iterated Games (visualizing and analyzing “iterated games” in which “repeat players” can condition the strategies used in their interactions on the past behaviors of their opponents)
  3. The Persuasion Effect: A Traditional Two-Stage Jury Model (visualizing and examining an influential model of jury behavior in American criminal cases; idea suggested by Professor Aaron Bruhl)
  4. Optimal Consumption Paths (showing the optimal consumption path given post-tax interest rates on investments, consumption discount rates and other factors.)
  5. Restricted Non-Cooperative Games (showing how the legal rules affect the evolution strategies when those affected by rules may need to sequence changes in their behaviors)
  6. Communities of Nations Bridged by Language Similarity (creating networks amongst nations based on the similarity of prevailing languages.)


His article, “The Network Structure of Supreme Court Jurisprudence” has been published in 10:3 of the Mathematica Journal.


Meredith J. Duncan’s Statement of Teaching Philosophy, which appears on her UHLC website, was selected by the LSAC to be used as an example in the LSAC’s Academic Assistance Training Conference. Duncan’s Statement of Teaching Philosophy was published in the conference booklet as well as used in slides presented at the conference held in Miami on June 20-23, 2007.


Victor Flatt spoke about the Bush Administration and the Clean Air Act at the Southeastern Association of Law Schools annual conference in August. In June, he was invited to participate with a group of American Law Institute members to examine the possibility of an ALI environmental project. Professor Flatt has also been invited to present a paper at the Boston College Environmental Affairs annual symposium in October.


Peter Hoffman was invited to membership as an Academic Fellow in the International Society of Barristers, an honor society of outstanding trial lawyers chosen by their peers based on excellence and integrity in advocacy. He also received this year’s Ethel M. Baker Faculty Award “in recognition of faculty activities that promote interchange between the Law Center and the greater community to encourage a relationship of mutual benefit.”  In June, Professor Hoffman completed the final three weeks of his Fulbright Senior Specialist Grant at Chinese University Law School in Hong Kong where he produced a set of training materials for intending barristers. In addition, he was a Team Leader for the NITA Southwest Deposition Program held at the University of New Mexico Law School on May 17-19, 2007, and the NITA New Jersey Deposition Program held at Rutgers University-Newark Law School on July 11-13, 2007. He also taught at the NITA Basic Advocacy Skills Program for Domestic Violence Attorneys held at NITA’s National Education Center in Louisville, Colorado on April 4-6, 2007 and the ABA Section of Family Law Trial Advocacy Institute held at UHLC on May 19-26, 2007.


Paul M. Janicke’s article, ” Patent Jury Verdicts: Myths and Realities”, was published in the July 2007 issue of Intellectual Property Today.


Ellen Marrus received a grant from Humanities Texas for the upcoming celebration of Gault@ 40, which is being sponsored by the Center for Children, Law, & Policy. The project culminates on November 2 at a symposium being held at the law center. The papers from the Symposium will be published in the Criminal Law Bulletin, a peer review journal published by West Thompson.


Tom Oldham’s West Family Law text (with Krause, Elrod & Garrison) is now available in its sixth edition.


Michael Olivas’ article, “Immigration-Related State Statutes and Local Ordinances: Preemption, Prejudice, and the Proper Role for Enforcement” was published in Bender’s Immigration Bulletin, July 15, 2007. This article will also appear in a slightly different version in the University of Chicago Legal Forum (2007).


Ira B. Shepard spoke last month on “Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation” to the Denver Tax Institute on July 26 for the 28th consecutive year. He was also informed that his paper entitled, “Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation: the Year 2006,” was recently listed on SSRN’s Top Ten download list for  Public Economics journals and Tax Law and Policy journals; he is currently undergoing medical treatment for a severely sprained right index finger resulting from too much mouse clicking.


Jacqueline Weaver taught International Petroleum Transactions for five weeks in Seton Hall’s summer program in Cairo, Egypt. This is the only summer program based in a Mideast country. Classes met for four days a week, and the long weekends included class trips to Alexandria, the Suez Canal, a Nile cruise to Luxor and Aswan, and many areas of historic Cairo. A fascinating experience in a well-run program, housed at the American University of Cairo.



Harriet Richman, Editor