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Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

  • l to r: Trudy Rubin, Mitch Orenstein, Clint Watts, Shawn Turner, Raymond Baker

    “We’ve been timid in applying economic sanctions to Russia,
    paralleling Clint Watt’s argument that we’ve been timid in our cyber response.”

    Raymond Baker, President of Global Financial Integrity, Foreign Interference in the Democratic Process: Countdown to the Midterms, keynote panel presentationon November 2, 2018

  • “Once you allow a little window for torture, you poison the whole institutional set-up.” 

    Juan E. Méndez, former United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman
    and Degrading Treatment or Punishment, CERL keynote presentation, September 20, 2018

  • “In both cases [9/11 and election interference], we were hit from an unexpected direction at an unrecognized vulnerability. With 9/11, we reorganized to prevent a repeat. With election interference, we have not.”

    General Michael V. Hayden (U.S. Air Force Ret) and former CIA and NSA Director, CERL Book Talk, September 13, 2018

  • The Weaponization of Outer Space: Ethical and Legal Boundaries, April 5-7, 2018 
    closed session entitled “Space Security, Space Law and Non-Binding Norms from Peace to Conflict”

CERL’s Mission

The Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law (CERL) is a non-partisan interdisciplinary institute dedicated to preserving and promoting ethics and the rule of law in national security, warfare, and democratic governance. CERL draws from the study of law, philosophy, and ethics to answer the difficult questions that arise in domestic and transnational crises and conflicts. more

  • Future CERL Events

    6/29/20 - CERL’s summer internship begins

    9/17/20 - conference - Protecting Democracy: Foreign Interference, Voter Confidence and Defensive Strategies in the 2020 Elections with public keynote

    9/24/20 - book talk - How to Save a Constitutional Democracy by Tom Ginsburg and Aziz Huq

    10/1-3/20 - conference - Circling the Arctic: Security and the Rule of Law in a Changing North with public keynote

    10/29/20 - book talk - American Nero: The History of the Destruction of the Rule of Law, and Why Trump is the Worst Offender by Richard Painter

    11/19/20 - book talk - Dare to Speak: Defending Free Speech for All by Suzanne Nossel

    2/18/21 - book talk - Defending Frenemies: Alliances, Politics, and Nuclear Nonproliferation in US Foreign Policy by Jeffrey W. Taliaferro 

    3/4/21 - book talk - Dark Mirror: Edward Snowden and the American Surveillance State by Barton Gellman  

    4/8/21 - book talk - How to Lose the Information War: Russia, Fake News, and the Future of Conflict by Nina Jankowicz 

    4/22-24/21 - conference - Left of Launch: Communications and Threat Escalation in a Nuclear Age with public keynote

    more information to come… join the CERL mailing list


For inquiries, contact:
Eileen Kenney
Director of Engagement

Executive Board Site

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University of Pennsylvania Law School
3501 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104