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Paul C. Giannelli, J.D. - Weatherhead Professor of Law, Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Friday April 10, 2009
12:30-1:30 p.m.
Crawford Hall - Room 9
Inamori Center
Case Western Reserve University

Dear Colleagues,

Television dramas give the impression that forensic science is a powerful tool for catching the guilty and exonerating the innocent. Yet, as a new National Academy of Sciences report shows, “there are great disparities among existing forensic science operations” across governments. The “depth, reliability, and overall quality of information” used in trials varies greatly, so that how justice is done, or not, depends on where the crime is committed or trial held.

Within this discouraging context, nuclear DNA analysis is the only method that has been “rigorously shown to have the capacity to consistently and, with a high degree of certainty, demonstrate a connection between evidence and a specific individual or source.” Yet the capacity to analyze DNA evidence varies greatly among jurisdictions, as does the ability to obtain it in specific cases.

To what extent, then, does the new science of DNA evidence offer a solution to the continuing challenge of determining innocence and guilt? Professor Giannelli, who co-chairs the American Bar Association’s Ad Hoc Innocence Committee to Ensure the Integrity of the Criminal Process, is simply one of the best people in the country with whom to discuss that crucial question.

As usual, we will gather in Room 9 of the Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence, on the lower level of Crawford Hall, for free cookies, beverages, and brown bag lunch.

Best regards,
Joe White

About Our Guest

Recognized by the New York Times as an "expert on scientific evidence," Paul Giannelli has lectured throughout the country and his work has been cited in hundreds of court opinions and legal articles, including decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court. He is coauthor of nine books: Scientific Evidence (3d edition, 1999), Evidence: Cases and Materials (6th ed. 2002), Courtroom Criminal Evidence (4th ed., 2006), Ohio Criminal Justice (2004), Understanding Evidence (2d ed. 2006), Ohio Juvenile Law (2004), Ohio Rules of Evidence Handbook (2005), Baldwin's Ohio Practice: Criminal Law (2d ed. 2003), and Baldwin's Ohio Practice: Evidence (2d ed. 2001). Mr. Giannelli serves as co-chair, ABA Ad Hoc Innocence Committee to Ensure the Integrity of the Criminal Process and as Reporter, ABA Criminal Justice Standards Task Force on DNA Evidence.

Friday Lunch Upcoming Topics and Speakers:

April 17: CWRU Students Report on the Election in El Salvador.

April 24: The Future of the Newspaper Industry. Lauren Rich Fine, Research Director for Content Next and formerly the lead analyst for publishing, information, advertising and online industries for Merrill Lynch.

The Friday Lunch discussions are held on the lower (ground) level of Crawford Hall. Visitors with mobility issues may find it easiest to take advantage of special arrangements we have made. On most Fridays, a few parking spaces in the V.I.P. lot in between Crawford Hall and Amasa Stone Chapel are held for participants in the lunch discussion. 

Visitors then can avoid walking up the hill to the first floor of Crawford by entering the building on the ground level, through the garage area under the building. The further door on the left in that garage will be left unlocked during the period before the Friday lunch. On occasion, parking will be unavailable because of other university events.

For more information about these and other Center for Policy Studies programs, please see

April 6, 2009

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Upcoming Events

The Roberts Court as a Busniess Court

Paul Clement; Partner, King & Spalding; former Solicitor General; U.S. Department of Justice Senior Fellow, Supreme Court Institute and Visiting Professor, Georgetown University Law Center

Wednesday, April 8, 2009, 4:30 - 5:30 p.m., Moot Court Room, CWRU School of Law. This program is sponosored by the Center for Business Law and Regulation

A great deal has been written and said about the extent to which the Roberts Court is a "business court," that is, a court that is favorably disposed towards business interests. The lecture will look at both the business cases on this year's docket as well as broader trends in the Court's jurisprudence. The lecture will attempt to get beyond broad, and not terribly meaningful, labels, such as pro- or anti-business, and examine the underlying trends in the Court's handling of cases. Although general labels are not particularly illuminating, some clear trends emerge, such as the Court's skepticism to the claims of antitrust plaintiffs in those cases that have reached the Court for plenary review.

Institutional Investors in Corporate Governance: Heroes or Villains?

Edward B. Rock Saul A. Fox Distinguished Professor of Business Law, University of Pennsylvania Law School; Robert B. Thompson Vanderbilt University School of Law; and John Wilcox Chairman, Sodali, Ltd. (international investor advisory consulting firm) former Senior VP and Head of Corporate Governance, TIAA-CREF

Friday April 17, 2009, 8:45 a.m. - 3:00 p.m, Moot Court Room, Case Western Reserve University School of Law

The Symposium will address a wide range of issues in the corporate and securities field, including: Shareholder voting, SEC proxy rules on shareholder voting and shareholder proposals; the role of proxy advisory services; the validity of shareholder initiatives in corporate governance; the role of hedge funds and sovereign wealth funds in corporate governance; the role of tender offers and defenses against tender offers (including staggered boards and poison pills); the propriety of current levels of executive compensation, the effectiveness of various elements of executive compensation as appropriate incentives, the role of shareholders inapproving executive compensation; and the effects of devices that separate voting rights from the economic interests of common stock ownership.

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