DATES: OCT 13-14, 2020    
TUITION: $500    







This seminar is primarily intended for U.S.-based legal audience but it is open to and valuable for international legal audience. Attendees representing non-profit sector or private sector would find this course particularly beneficial.



The seminar will be delivered online through 2 sessions via Zoom. Each session will last approximately 3.5 hours and will start at 9am EST (Washington, D.C. time). The class will be highly interactive and will require students to work in virtual breakout groups, analyze and present findings and solve case problems and exercises.


Course Outline


  • How can the law become more responsive to the rise in economic, social and political inequality?
  • What procedural mechanisms already exist in the law that can increase equity?
  • What innovative legal strategies or structures can be created or added to by organizations to encourage diversity and equity?
  • What are the substantive limitations of equality?
  • How much inequality is helpful and acceptable within systems?
  • What are the liability issues related to inequity that arise out of the COVID pandemic and protests for racial justice?
  • What are the most innovative legal and public policy strategies and best practices to respond to these issues?


Day 1

  • Historical and definitional analysis: how the law and economic policy created structural incentives for the rise in domestic and global inequality.
  • Examining the numbers: what does social, political and economic inequality look like?
  • Exercise: how much inequality is acceptable?

Day 2

  • Best practices: integrating lessons learned into organizational frameworks to combat inequity.
  • Levers of power: how can legal, legislative and mass media be effective means of reducing structural inequality.
  • Exercise: crafting legal and public policy strategies to combat structural inequality in your organization or community of interest.


Course Advisors

Ehsan Zaffar is a civil rights advocate, educator and policymaker and the founder of the Los Angeles Mobile Legal Aid Clinic (LAMLAC), which helped to pioneer the delivery of mobile legal care to vulnerable populations in California and across the nation.

He served as Senior Advisor on civil rights at the United States Department of Homeland Security. He was a member of the faculty at George Washington University's Graduate School of Political Management and the Washington College of Law at American University and author of Understanding Homeland Security: Foundations of Security Policy.

In 2016, he joined General (Ret.) David Petraeus as a member of the board of Team Rubicon. Ehsan Zaffar is a Council Member of Chatham House at the Royal Institute of International Affairs, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Pacific Council on International Policy. He is the recipient of the U.S. State Department's Benjamin Franklin Award for Public Diplomacy and the Department of Homeland Security Secretary's Award for Excellence.

Ehsan Zaffar serves as a Visiting Fellow at the University of Southern California’s Sol Price School of Public Policy where his scholarly work focuses on social, political and economic inequality and he is also a Senior Scholar (non-resident) at the University of California, Berkeley.