Research and Teaching Areas
Susan Scafidi is the first professor ever to offer a course in Fashion Law, and she is internationally recognized for her leadership in establishing the field. She has testified regarding the proposed extension of legal protection to fashion designs and continues to work actively with members of Congress and the fashion industry on this and other issues. Her additional areas of expertise encompass property, intellectual property, cultural property, international law, trusts &estates, and legal history. Professor Scafidi founded and directs the nonprofit Fashion Law Institute, which was established with the generous support and advice of the Council of Fashion Designers of America and its president, Diane von Furstenberg, and is located at Fordham Law School. Prior to teaching at Fordham, Professor Scafidi was a tenured member of both the law and history faculties at SMU, and she has taught at a number of other schools, including Yale, Georgetown, and Cardozo.
Professor Scafidi is the author of Who Owns Culture? Appropriation and Authenticity in American Law (2005), as well as articles in the areas of intellectual property, cultural property, and of course fashion law. In addition, she has spoken to legal, design, and academic audiences around the globe and has contributed commentary to hundreds of media reports on issues related to law and the fashion industry. Professor Scafidi also created and maintains the first website on fashion law, Counterfeit Chic, which has been recognized as one of the American Bar Association’s top 100 blogs.
After graduating from Duke University and the Yale Law School, she pursued graduate study in legal history at Berkeley and the University of Chicago and clerked for a distinguished legal historian, Judge Morris S. Arnold of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.