Info for Students2020-06-03T16:34:14+00:00

All your questions answered

What conflicts of interest do you have?2020-06-23T00:17:31+00:00

The University of California recognizes that engagements in the private sector enrich academics’ research and teaching. I teach at professional schools, which tend to encourage teaching and research related to practice challenges. There’s a tradeoff between private sector engagements and benefits to students. For instance, several of my classes are based on client scenarios and my writing is informed by real business needs and constraints.

Norms surrounding conflicts disclosure and regulation is highly disciplinary. In some fields, experts think themselves above conflicts and do not disclose them. In others, such as law, norms of client confidentiality cause some academics to keep their conflicts secret. And some universities allow study sponsors to control the outcomes of research—something that is explicitly prohibited at Cal.

I serve on boards to two companies, 4iQ (cybersecurity intelligence) and Palantir Technologies. I have also served on the boards of non-profits and operated a foundation, but no one seems concerned about those conflicts, and if you ask me in person, I’ll explain why you should be 🙂 Since 2015, I have been of counsel to Gunderson Dettmer LLP, where I advised scores of emerging technology companies and venture clients. The identities of my Gunderson clients are confidential, but I don’t engage in any kind of public advocacy for these clients. Instead, I typically help them with discrete problems.

My work has been directly or indirectly supported by many technology companies, including Apple, Google, Microsoft, Palantir, and Nokia. I always disclose specific sponsors of my research projects, and all situations where my academic work may be colored by a client or sponsor.

I’m an [undergrad] [grad] student, may I take your courses?2020-07-31T16:25:49+00:00

Probably yes.

Graduate students, you can enroll if my course has a non-Law prefix, such as Info.

Undergraduate students, you can enroll in INFO (but not LAW) courses with permission. To obtain permission, email me the following information. I typically enroll undergraduates after the graduate registration period.

1. I am an upper-division student [Yes/No]

2. What year?

3. I understand and accept that this is a graduate-level class, with graduate-level materials and pacing. [Yes/No]

4. I understand and accept that participation in class discussion is expected, even if the class is larger than most undergraduate courses that expect this (in grad and law school classes, for example, students participate in discussion in 50-100-person classes). [Yes/No]

5. I would like to take this class because: [Please tell us why you would like to take the class.]

6. I would contribute to this class because: [Please tell us why you would contribute to the class. For example, your major is relevant to topics in the class; you are doing an undergrad thesis on a relevant topic; you worked on relevant issues prior to coming to Berkeley; etc.]

How do you contribute to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion at Berkeley?2020-06-22T23:58:34+00:00

Technology law as a field is not known as being particularly diverse, nor equitable and inclusive. In my career at Berkeley, I have taken specific, sustained action to promote women in higher education, to raise awareness of SES issues in technology, and to include underrepresented and minority students in my work. Come by my office hours and I can speak with you in greater detail about these efforts. I’d also love to hear your thoughts about how BCLT can address systemic inequalities.

Recent events have caused me to deepen diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts in teaching. I plan to devote more classroom time to the structural causes of exclusion and inequity. For instance, in my technology courses generally, I intend to connect students with the history of Silicon Valley, and the root causes that made the area and its most successful companies homogenous. Few people know that Lockheed was the largest employer in the Valley until the rise of the .com bubble. Lockheed and other defense industrial base companies were male and white dominant (Lockheed was 85% male and 90% white even after equal opportunity laws were enacted). The demands of secrecy surrounding the DIB, the military R&D subject matter, and other factors caused systematic exclusion since the 1940s. Thus, when we think about inclusion in tech today, we have to contemplate addressing decades of disadvantage. Obviously, race and gender neutral hiring won’t be enough and we need to think of outreach and intervention on a much bigger level.

Will you serve on my [quals][phd] committee?2020-09-02T20:38:03+00:00

Maybe! I am a senate member and member of both the law and information faculties, so I can serve as an outside member in many configurations. Please email me a description of your research agenda, and how you think my participation will benefit your research.

Will you write me a letter of recommendation?2020-05-30T17:07:31+00:00

Probably yes 🙂 But I need a few things from you in order to do a great job.

First, faculty need time. A month before the deadline is great.

Second, could you send me the following information:

  • The position title and submission information.
  • Information about the position
  • Your resume or CV
  • A short description of your long-term career goals
  • In your own words, why you think you are a good fit for the opportunity
  • In your own words, why you think the opportunity is a good one
Where can I find LaTeX templates?2020-05-30T16:55:00+00:00
Whom have you mentored at Berkeley?2020-07-19T15:45:37+00:00

Despite teaching in a professional program, I’ve had the chance to mentor some graduate students, including:

  • Zehra Betul Ayranci, Berkeley PhD, Fox Sports
  • Arianne  Jimenez, Privacy and Public Policy Manager Facebook APAC
  • Aniket Kesari, Yale/Berkeley JD/PhD
  • Nicole van der Meulen, EC3
  • Amit Elazari Bar On, head of global cybersecurity, Intel
  • Bart van der Sloot, Tilburg University
  • Ashkan Soltani, privacy/security researcher

In addition to these students, with Dean Shankar Sastry, I was Co-PI of a program (TRUST SITE REU) with a goal to increase diversity in graduate STEM programs. We hosted scores of undergraduates at Cal, and in some cases, I published papers with these students, including Mika Ayenson (Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory), Shannon Canty, Quentin Mayo, and Lauren Thomas.