Blum gains tenure as professor of law at Harvard

Gabriella Blum

Gabriella Blum

Following a vote of the Harvard Law School faculty, Gabriella Blum LL.M. ’01 S.J.D. ’03, a specialist in the laws of war and conflict resolution, has been promoted from assistant professor to professor of law—a tenured faculty position.

“Gabby Blum brings an extraordinary combination of imaginative scholarship and practical experience to the search for new ways of thinking about some of today’s most pressing and seemingly intractable international conflicts,” said Dean Martha Minow. “She actually is a triple threat: pathbreaking scholar, superb and inspiring teacher, and outstanding contributor to public debate.  Gutsy, rigorous, and generous, Professor Blum has been an invaluable colleague here since 2005, and the occasion of her promotion to a tenured post is simply wonderful. We look forward to many more contributions and accomplishments from her in the years ahead.”

Blum’s research interests include conflict management, counter-terrorism operations, law of armed conflict, negotiation, and public international law. She joined the HLS faculty as a visiting assistant professor in 2005. She is currently visiting as a Berkowitz Fellow at New York University’s Tikvah Center for Law & Jewish Civilization.

Blum said: “Harvard Law School has been my home away from home. I’m delighted and honored to be part of this singularly great community of scholars, students and staff.”

She will be teaching International Humanitarian Law in the fall term, as well as co-leading the International Law Workshop with Professor Bill Alford.  She will also be co-leading with Professor Jack Goldsmith, the “National and International Security Law Workshop: Covert Operations, Espionage, and Intelligence Gathering.”

She co-wrote, with HLS Professor Philip B. Heymann, “Laws, Outlaws, and Terrorists: Lessons from the War on Terrorism” (MIT Press 2010). Their book, which rejects the argument that traditional American values embodied in domestic and international law can be ignored in any sustainable effort to keep the United States safe from terrorism, received the 2010 Chicago-Kent College of Law/Roy C. Palmer Civil Liberties Prize in October. She is also the author of “Islands of Agreement: Managing Enduring Armed Rivalries,” which was published by Harvard University Press in 2007.

She has published shorter works in collection, including “Cluster Munitions” in Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (Oxford University Press, 2010); “Explosive Remnants of War” in Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (Oxford University Press, 2009); and “When Not to Negotiate” in The ABA Negotiator’s Fieldbook 101 (Andrea K. Schneider & Christopher Honeyman eds, 2006).

Other select publications include “The Dispensable Lives of Soldiers,” in the Journal of Legal Analysis (2010); “The Laws of War and the Lesser Evil,” 35 Yale Journal of International Law 1 (2010); and “The Role of the Client: The President’s Role in Government Lawyering,” 32 Boston College International and Comparative Law Review (2009).

Blum earned an LL.B. in 1995, a B.A. in Economics in 1997, and an LL.M. in 1999, all from Tel-Aviv University. She then joined the Israel Defense Forces, serving as a senior legal advisor in the International Law Department of the Military Advocate General’s Corps. She was involved in Israeli-Arab peace negotiations, Israeli strategic cooperation with foreign forces, and administration of the Palestinian occupied territories.

After completion of her LL.M. and S.J.D. degrees in 2003, Blum returned to the International Law Department of the Israel Defense Forces to lead the counter-terrorism desk, and then went on to serve as strategic advisor to the Prime Minister’s Office in the National Security Council.