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Constituting Equality: Gender Equality in Comparative Constitutional Law*

March 23-24, 2007
Moot Court Room (123)
Indiana University School of Law
211 South Indiana Avenue
Bloomington, Indiana

Interest in comparative constitutional law has exploded in recent years, but the burgeoning field has paid little attention to issues of gender equality. This international conference will highlight the broad range of constitutional mechanisms for promoting gender equality in nations around the world.

Our approach is conceptual, focusing on the thematic issues facing both existing constitutions and those on the drafting table.

Hear panel discussions addressing:

  • the impact of constitutional protection for customary and religious law on gender equality;
  • building gender into the structure of government through electoral gender quotas or women's commissions;
  • substantive constitutional rights of particular concern to women, such as reproductive rights;
  • constitutional incorporation of international law on gender equality;
  • and the role of women in the process of constitution-making.

Constituting Equality brings together participants from five continents and a wide range of professional experiences, including government officials and activists as well as academics from several disciplines. Our goal is to achieve a greater understanding of the promise and pitfalls of constitutional mechanisms for promoting gender equality under different conditions.

*Special thanks to sponsor SN Brussels Airlines, for making this international event possible.

Symposium Participants

Thin Thin Aung
Women's League of Burma
Beverly Baines
Queen's University
Jeannine Bell
Indiana University School of Law—Bloomington
Mary Anne Case
University of Chicago Law School
Felicia Coleman
Supreme Court of Liberia
Rebecca Cook
University of Toronto Faculty of Law
Drude Dahlerup
Stockholm University Law School
Joanna Erdman
University of Toronto Faculty of Law
Carol Greenhouse
Princeton University
Helen Irving
University of Sydney Law School
Vicki Jackson
Georgetown University Law Center
Dawn Johnsen
Indiana University School of Law—Bloomington
Ying Lao
Women's League of Burma
Christiana Ochoa
Indiana University School of Law—Bloomington
A. Yasmine Rassam
Vice President of Foreign Affairs and International Women's Issues
The Independent Women's Forum
William Scheuerman
Indiana University—Bloomington
Aili Marie Tripp
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Susan Williams
Indiana University School of Law—Bloomington
Adrien Wing
University of Iowa College of Law
Ying Lao
Women's League of Burma
Elisabeth Zoller
University of Paris II (Panthéon-Assas)

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Presentation Topics and Schedule

Subject to change

The schedule presents an outline. Click to see the complete titles and abstracts.

Friday, March 23
8:30 - 9:00 am
First floor lobby

Continental breakfast

9:00 - 9:15 am
Moot Court Room

Welcome and introductory remarks

  • Dean Lauren Robel

9:15 - 10:15 am
Moot Court Room

Video* or mp3 audio

Keynote address"Gender Equality and the Idea of a Constitution: Entrenchment, Jurisdiction, Interpretation

  • Vicki Jackson
    "Gender Equality and the Idea of a Constitution: Entrenchment, Jurisdiction, Interpretation"
10:15 - 10:30 am

Coffee break

10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Moot Court Room

Video* or mp3 audio

Panel: Gender in the structure of government: the example of quotas

  • William Scheuerman
    Moderator
  • Drude Dahlerup
  • A. Yasmine Rassam
  • Susan Williams

12:00 - 1:00 pm
Faculty Lounge

Video* or mp3 audio

Lunch

1:00 - 2:30 pm
Moot Court Room

Panel: Cultural/religious rights and gender equality

  • Carol Greenhouse
    Moderator
  • Beverly Baines
  • Aili Marie Tripp
  • Felicia Coleman
2:30 - 3:00 pm

Coffee Break

3:00 - 4:30 pm
Moot Court Room

Video* or mp3 audio

Panel: Constitutional incorporation of international law and gender equality

  • Elisabeth Zoller
    Moderator
  • Rebecca Cook
  • Christiana Ochoa
4:30 - 6:00 pm

Free time

Saturday, March 24

8:30 - 9:00 am
Third Floor Lobby

Continental breakfast

9:00 - 10:30 am
Faculty Conference Room

Video* or mp3 audio

Panel: Substantive rights and their impact on gender equality: the examples of reproductive rights and freedom from violence

  • Dawn Johnsen
    Moderator
  • Mary Anne Case
  • Joanna Erdman
  • Ying Lao

10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Video* or mp3 audio

Panel: Women in the process of constitution-making

  • Jeannine Bell
    Moderator
  • Helen Irving
  • Thin Thin Aung
  • Adrien Wing
12:00 - 1:00 pm
Faculty Lounge

Lunch

1:00 - 2:00
Faculty Conference Room

Roundtable discussion and closing remarks

Continuing Legal Education Credit

The conference is approved for at most 8.5 Indiana CLE credits. The charge is $50 for Indiana Law alumni and $100 for other attorneys. Register and pay online.

Lunch will be provided for CLE participants.

Registration, Travel and Lodging

The conference is free and open to the public.

Plan your visit with travel directions and nearby places to stay and eat.

More Information

Contact
Susan Williams
Organizer
shwillia@indiana.edu

Media Relations

Debbie O'Leary
Director of Communications
devo99@indiana.edu

Logistics

Nikki Rolf
Event Coordinator
812-855-7981, nrolf@indiana.edu