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Cortelyou Kenney

Affiliated Fellow


Ms. Kenney is an Academic Fellow at Cornell Law School, where she dedicates her research and writing to constitutional law, and institutional design. Her research focuses on how structural aspects of our legal system help promote and foster cooperation, or inhibit cooperation, and how to structure institutions at a micro- and macro- level to promote justice. Today, she's working on questions of how humans can cooperate by drawing on other disciplines such as physics, computer science, evolutionary biology, and economics to look at new innovations in game theory that include a focus on generosity, forgiveness, and altruism. She also generates scholarship that is within the First Amendment space thinking about First Amendment doctrines that function (or do not function) to promote justice, with an emphasis on race and civil rights. She's particularly concerned with how the First Amendment can sometimes be used as a weapon to marginalize oppressed groups, such as persons of color, LGBTQI individuals, and women. Her scholarship has appeared in the California Law Review,the Fordham Law Review,and the Cardozo Arts & Entertainment Law Journal. 

Ms. Kenney is also an Affiliated Fellow at the Information Society Project at Yale Law School, and a former Research Scholar in Law and Clinical Instructor at Yale Law School's Media Freedom & Information Access Clinic. Previously, she also taught at Stanford Law School, where she was a Thomas C. Grey Fellow, was a fellow at the National Women's Law Center, and a litigator at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr in Washington, D.C. She clerked for Chief Judge Roger Gregory of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum of the Southern District of New York. She graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College and received her J.D. from UC Berkeley School of Law, where she received the Philip & Barbara Kaplan Scholarship for academic excellence and commitment to public interest.