Paul H. Robinson
Colin S. Diver Professor of Law
Paul Robinson is one of the world’s leading criminal law scholars. A prolific writer and lecturer, Robinson has published articles in virtually all of the top law reviews, lectured in 85 cities in 34 states and 24 countries, and had his writings appear in 13 languages.
Paul Robinson is one of the world’s leading criminal law scholars. A prolific writer and lecturer, Robinson has published articles in virtually all of the top law reviews, lectured in 85 cities in 34 states and 24 countries, and had his writings appear in 13 languages. A former federal prosecutor and counsel for the US Senate Subcommittee on Criminal Laws and Procedures, he was the lone dissenter when the US Sentencing Commission promulgated the current federal sentencing guidelines. He is the author or editor of 14 books, including the standard lawyer’s reference on criminal law defenses, three Oxford monographs on criminal law theory, a highly regarded criminal law treatise, and an innovative case studies course book.
He is the lead editor of Criminal Law Conversations (Oxford, 2009), a debate involving more than 100 scholars from around the world, and the author of Intuitions of Justice and the Utility of Desert (Oxford 2013); Distributive Principles of Criminal Law (Oxford 2008, also in Spanish and Chinese); and Structure and Function in Criminal Law (Oxford 1997 also in Chinese). Robinson recently completed two criminal code reform projects in the United States and the first modern Islamic penal code under the auspices of the U.N. Development Program. He also writes for general audiences, including popular books such as Would You Convict? (NYU 1999), Law Without Justice (Oxford 2005), and the forthcoming Living Beyond the Law: Modern Lessons from Pirates, Eskimos, Lepers & Survivors (Rowman & Littlefield 2014).
- Criminal Law
- Criminal Law Theory
- Criminal Code Reform
- Criminal Sentencing
- Global Human Rights
Articles and Book Chapters
Four Distinctions that Glanville Williams Did Not Make: The Practical Benefits of Examining the Interrelation Among Criminal Law Doctrines, in THE SANCTITY OF LIFE AND THE CRIMINAL LAW: THE LEGACY OF GLANVILLE WILLIAMS (Dennis Baker ed., Cambridge University Press 2013).
Life Without Parole Under Modern Theories of Punishment, in LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE: AMERICA'S NEW DEATH PENALTY? (Austin Sarat & Charles Ogletree eds., NYU Press 2012).
The Modern Irrationalities of American Criminal Codes: An Empirical Study of Offense Grading, 100 J. CRIM. L. & CRIMINOLOGY 709 (2010) (with Thomas Gaeta, Matthew Majarian, Megan Schultz, & Douglas Weck).
Codifying Shari'a: International Norms, Legality & the Freedom to Invent New Forms, 2 J. COMP. L. (British) 1 (2007) (with 11 present and former students in my Criminal Law Research Group, regarding our work in drafting an Islamic Penal Code for the Maldives under U.N.D.P. sponsorship).
More publications can be found here.
Murder Mitigation in the Fifty-Two American Jurisdictions: A Case Study in Doctrinal Interrelation Analysis (April 8, 2014), U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 14-16. (forthcoming)
Justice: 1850s San Francisco and the California Gold Rush (March 20, 2014), in LIVING BEYOND THE LAW: LESSONS FROM PIRATES, PRISONERS, LEPERS, AND SURVIVORS (Rowman & Littlefield, forthcoming August 2014); U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 14-14 (with Sarah M. Robinson). (forthcoming 2014)
Punishment: Drop City and the Utopian Communes, in LIVING BEYOND THE LAW: LESSONS FROM PIRATES, PRISONERS, LEPERS, AND SURVIVORS (Rowman & Littlefield, forthcoming August 2014); U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 14-13 (with Sarah M. Robinson). (forthcoming 2014)
The Model Penal Code's Conceptual Error on the Nature of Proximate Cause, and How to Fix It (January 14, 2014), U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 14-3 (forthcoming)
The Moral Vigilante and Her Cousins in the Shadows (November 22, 2013), U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 13-29. (forthcoming)
Empirical Desert, Individual Prevention, and Limiting Retributivism: A Reply (May 28, 2013), U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 13-19 (with Joshua Samuel Barton & Matthew J. Lister). (forthcoming)
The Proper Role of the Community in Determining Criminal Liability and Punishment (U. Pa. Pub. L. & Leg. Theory Res. Paper Series, No. 12-49, 2012)
Comments on [Israeli] Proposal for Structuring Judicial Discretion in Sentencing, HUKIM – Israeli Journal on Legislation.
- Criminal Law
- Criminal Justice
Penn Law - Colin S. Diver Professor of Law (2003- )
Northwestern - Edna & Ednyfed Williams Professor (1998-2002); Professor (1993-98); Visiting Professor (1992-93)
Georgetown - Adjunct Professor (1986-88)
University of Michigan - Visiting Professor (1998-99)
Rutgers - Acting Dean (1989-90); Distinguished Professor (1985-93); Professor (1980-85); Assistant Professor (1977-80)
Director, University of Pennsylvania Law School Criminal Law Research Group.
Director, Maldivian Penal Code Reform Project.
Director, Illinois Criminal Code Rewrite & Reform Commission.
Director, Kentucky Penal Code Revision Project.
Co-Editor, SSRN Legal Scholarship Network (1996-present)
- Criminal Law
- Advanced Criminal Law
- Criminal Law Theory Seminar
- Punishment Theory Seminar
- Criminal Law Codification
- Penn Criminal Law Research Group