Disaster Law Reader: Call For Papers

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katrina-flagEditors: Kathleen A. Bergin and Tracy L. McGaugh

Hurricane Katrina was unlike any other weather disaster to hit the United States in the way it exposed deficiencies in federal, state, and local disaster planning and management. It was also unique in the way it exposed entrenched views of race, class, and poverty, and forced the migration of thousands of Gulf Coast residents on whose shoulders fell our collective failure to plan.

Nearly five years have passed since Katrina wreaked havoc on the Gulf, and since that time, we’ve seen families reunited, schools rebuilt, and neighborhoods repaired. Yet for thousands of residents, legal issues remain unresolved and individual needs remain unmet. For these reasons, the five year anniversary of Katrina provides aspiring lawyers an opportunity to examine the legal and social implications of disaster by considering how the law could have been used to mitigate the impact and aftermath of the storm.  

This notice calls for papers to be included in an edited collection on legal issues related to disaster preparation, management, and recovery. The editors will be seeking publication with an appropriate academic publisher.

Both completed articles (previously published or unpublished) and abstracts of works in progress will be considered. Papers with a multi-disciplinary or extra-legal focus are welcome.

Topics might include, but are by no means limited, to the following:

  • The application of international law in times of disaster in the United States and/or comparative perspectives on disaster management in other countries
  • Legal issues raised by families in distress post-disaster
  • The special impact of disasters on those without full legal rights, such as children and pets
  • Social and legal forces that impact individual or community decisions to evacuate
  • Legal issues related to the diaspora following a mass disaster
  • Disaster law from a critical perspective, addressing issues of race, sex, sexual orientation, physical ability, etc.

Completed articles or essays must be submitted no later than August 1, 2009. If you wish to have a piece considered prior to completion, please submit an abstract of no more than two pages no later than May 1, 2009. You will receive a provisional acceptance by June 1 and be asked to submit a completed piece by August 1. A final decision on acceptance of a completed work will be made on or about September 1, 2009.   Please also include a CV and full contact information.

Proposals and papers should be sent electronically to both editors. Please feel free to contact one or both to talk over your ideas or for more information: Kathleen A. Bergin (kbergin@stcl.edu) or Tracy L. McGaugh (tmcgaugh@tourolaw.edu).

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