Fordham Urban Consortium
Faculty and students from all disciplines across Fordham engage in research on historical and contemporary urbanization, its challenges and opportunities for the 21st century.
The Urban Consortium at Fordham University organizes and sponsors programs and events that highlight contemporary urban issues. It focuses on engaged, interdisciplinary urban research by graduate students and faculty.
Property Treatise – Thoroughly Updated and Revised
joseph william singer | nestor m. davidson
Property, Sixth Edition
March 17, 2022
from the publisher:
This overview of property law addresses both classic and contemporary topics covered in the first-year property course in a clear, accessible format. The book offers clear explanations of property law through textual treatment, with numerous examples, analytical discussion of key cases, and issues followed by hypotheticals. The book places emphasis on disagreements among states about the applicable rules of property law, with explanations of the conflicting issues
With extraordinary clarity and insight, Joseph William Singer has written a comprehensive overview of the rules and doctrine of property law. The numerous examples and hypotheticals in Property, Sixth Edition contribute to a rich pedagogy that illuminates both classic and contemporary topics. For the Sixth Edition, Professor Singer has been joined by Professor Nestor M. Davidson, and the authors have thoroughly updated and revised the treatise to reflect recent developments.
Among the Changes New to the Sixth Edition:
- Recent developments in the law of public accommodations and fair housing on protections against discrimination on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity, as well as updates to federal regulatory guidance on fair housing law.
- Important recent Supreme Court cases on regulatory takings, including Murr v. Wisconsin, on determining the relevant parcel; Knick v. Township of Scott, on the ability to file in federal court without exhausting state-court litigation; and Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid, on the standard for claims of physical invasion.
- The challenge of “heirs property” to the loss of Black farmland and the rapid proliferation of the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act.
- Cases testing the limits of lease obligations and the boundaries of regulatory takings with the public-health response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Buy Property, Sixth Edition from Aspen Publishing.
Urban Studies Week Panel Discussion:
COVID-19 AND THE CITY
This event happened on April 27
Virtual / Room TBA
The Urban Studies Program at Fordham University cordially invites you to this year's Urban Studies Week Panel Discussion: COVID-19 and the City.
There is ample data to show the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color, and the exacerbating effects it had on existing inequalities. But simultaneously, we also witnessed a highly politicized discussion, in which politicians and journalists were quick to proclaim The End of the City as we know it. Our panelists will examine all these different narratives, as well as the real effects of the pandemic, from their different perspectives.
- Ruth Milkman Distinguished Professor of Sociology, CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies and CUNY Graduate Center
- Lizzette Soria Policy Specialist at UN Women. Focus areas: Gender-Based Violence, urban development, and infrastructure
- Anusha Dandapani Chief Data & Analytics Officer at United Nations International Computing Centre
discussion & insight
- Challenges that major cities and their vulnerable communities faced during the pandemic
- The politicized predictions of "the end of the city"
- Issues cities still have to address as we continue to live with COVID-19
Please join us on April 27, from 1–2:30 p.m. for what promises to be an exciting and important conversation.
How Ketanji Brown Jackson Joining the Supreme Court Could Impact Your Well-Being
from well+good by Erica Sloan:
Ketanji Brown Jackson was confirmed to the Supreme Court on April 7, which will soon make her the first Black woman to serve on the nation’s highest court. The historical confirmation follows a Senate vote of 53-47, wherein all Democrats and three Republicans backed Jackson, fulfilling President Joe Biden's campaign promise of ensuring a Black woman be on the Supreme Court. Though her confirmation won’t swing the Court’s political balance—she is replacing retiring liberal Justice Stephen G. Breyer, leaving the six-three conservative supermajority intact—her views on key political issues are nonetheless essential to note, given Supreme Court appointments are for life.
“The Supreme Court serves all of America, and therefore, it should reflect our wonderful diversity,” says Elizabeth Cooper, JD, professor at Fordham University School of Law. To the extent that Jackson’s perspective will likely reflect the Court’s current minority liberal opinion, Cooper expects that Brown will “draft and join carefully worded dissents, explaining why a different outcome may be required, and laying the foundation for a different approach in the future.”
Read the full article by Erica Sloan at WELL+GOOD.
Thousands of Etsy sellers are planning a strike to protest new fee increases
On April 11, thousands of sellers on Etsy will go on a weeklong strike to protest a range of new policies rolled out by the e-commerce company, including a 30% transaction fee increase—from 5% to 6.5%—set to take effect on that date.
“Legally, this isn’t a strike, because these sellers are not employees of Etsy,” says Chris Rhomberg, a sociology professor at Fordham University. “That means they aren’t protected by the National Labor Relations Act. Still, it's clear they realize they don't have any real bargaining power with Etsy as individuals.”
The crafters aren’t the first participants of the creator economy to organize a strike pushing back against the platforms that support them. Last summer, many Black creators on TikTok took part in #BlackTikTokStrike, arguing that they weren’t getting adequate credit for their contributions, while white TikTokers landed lucrative brand deals. This, too, wasn’t legally a strike, but it did ultimately get TikTok’s attention.
“Principally, what Etsy stands to lose is its reputation,” Rhomberg says. “If it wants to bill itself as a small-business marketplace supporting individual crafters, that will be dampened by people who say they’re being exploited.”
Read the full article by Jane Thier at Fortune.
Marion Barry as a Model for Mayors
from the nation by Christina M. Greer:
“With crime on the rise in cities across America, along with rising unemployment, housing insecurity, and homelessness, it is high time to revisit the legacy of former Washington, D.C., Mayor Marion Barry.”
“As cities across the country experience budget constraints on the state and federal level and grapple with devastatingly high levels of unemployment and increases in crime, Barry’s vision of roughly 40 years ago should serve as a blueprint and a beacon for current mayors.”
“During his tenure as mayor, especially during his first term, Barry’s programs helped provide summer jobs for tens of thousands of D.C. teenagers, home-buying assistance for working-class residents, and food for senior citizens. Barry also placed Black Americans in thousands of middle- and upper-level management positions in his city administration that in previous generations had been reserved for whites. Because of his efforts, these government jobs enabled an entire generation of Black Americans to move more solidly into the middle class.”
Christina Greer is an associate professor of political science and American studies at Fordham University, author of Black Ethnics: Race, Immigration, and the Pursuit of the American Dream, and cohost of the podcast FAQ.NY.
Read the full article at The Nation.
Supreme Court poised to increase public funding of religious schools
from los angeles times:
After imposing a strict church-state separation for decades, the Supreme Court appears poised to allow — and in some cases even require — more government funding of church-run schools.
Conservative justices in recent years have been insisting that the tradition of church-state separation should be cast aside because it grew from an anti-Catholic bias in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
On Wednesday, the court will hear a new test of church-state separation in a case from Maine, which has no public high schools in some rural communities.
“The really big question that Carson tees up is whether by funding public schools, the state incurs a duty to fund religious schools as well,” said Aaron Saiger, a law professor at Fordham in New York. This could trigger “a cataclysmic change in the place of public education in American society and government. But if one extends the kinds of arguments that have been winning in the Supreme Court, this may be the future.”
Read the full article by David G. Savage at latimes.com.
Fordham Law Scholars Featured in “Big Idea” Limited Video Series
from fordham law news:
Eight members of the Fordham Law faculty recently spoke about the big ideas that drive their work—from frontline workers’ rights to changing power dynamic between cities and states to privacy and crime control—as part of a limited video series.
“Our nation is at a crossroads as we grapple with fundamental questions covering a range of issues that define our society and shape our culture,” said Dean Matthew Diller. “Legal scholarship plays a critical role in helping us understand these issues, the backdrop against which they arise, and in identifying promising ways forward that are true to our core values.”
Urban Consortium members Nestor Davidson and Jennifer Gordon share their ideas below.
THE BIG IDEA: Re-assessing How Cities and States Govern
Professor Nestor Davidson is the Albert A. Walsh Professor of Real Estate, Land Use and Property Law and leads the Urban Law Center at Fordham Law. As a founding editor of SLoG Law Blog (State & Local Government Law Blog), Professor Davidson evaluates how cities and states govern using policies such as Home Rule. He argues that policies should empower cities to respond to crises in ways that best serve their communities — now more than ever — in his latest article, “Do Local Governments Really Have Too Much Power? Understanding the National League of Cities’ Principles of Home Rule for the Twenty-First Century,” forthcoming in the North Carolina Law Review.
THE BIG IDEA: Globalization’s Uneven Impact
Professor Jennifer Gordon focuses her scholarship on immigration and labor law, and the struggle for social justice. More specifically, Professor Gordon examines how globalization has opened up the world to a freer flow of goods, money, and services across borders, while the laws surrounding the movement of people and the rights of workers have become more restricted. In her scholarly work, Professor Gordon critiques this contrast and asks how a fairer regime might look. In her forthcoming article in Law and Social Inquiry, “In the Zone: Work at the Intersection of Trade and Migration,” Professor Gordon examines the global regulation of trade and its relationship with migration.
View the full series at Fordham Law News.
State & Local Government Law Blog Interview with Richard Briffault
“The dialogue below—a format for reflection that we are going to experiment with here at SLoG—reflects on the history of American anti-urbanism, ways in which the most salient political cleavages we face today are along the urban/rural divide, and how emergent contemporary localism centered on metropolitan-scale conflicts now drive national political life, with so many state legislatures places of structurally entrenched minority power - and what might be done to shift this dynamic.”
Read the full interview by Nestor Davidson at SLoG.
Olivier Sylvain Named Senior Advisor to FTC Chair Khan
from fordham law news:
Fordham Law School announced that Olivier Sylvain, a professor of communications, information, and administrative law, and the director of the McGannon Center for Communications Research and the academic director of the Center for Law and Information Policy, has been named a senior advisor to Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chair Lina Khan. During his appointment to the FTC, Sylvain will advise on rulemaking and emerging tech, among other issues.
“I’m thrilled that Chair Khan and the FTC leadership has asked me to join them to think through some of the most vexing problems in our networked information economy today. My work at Fordham and elsewhere has prepared me for much of this, but I never imagined I’d work in a federal agency – let alone in this way. I just hope that I am up to the task.”
Sylvain's most recent writing, scholarship, and public speaking engagements are on liability under the Communications Decency Act, the social impacts of artificial intelligence, and community-owned networked computing. In 2020, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation awarded him a grant to support this work.
Read the full article at Fordham Law News.
The Promise and Peril of Artificial Intelligence
from fordham news:
The concept of artificial intelligence has been with us since 1955, when a group of researchers first proposed a study of “the simulation of human intelligence processes by machines.” At the same time, it seems like not a day goes by without news about some development, making it feel very futuristic.
It’s also the purview of professors from a variety of fields at Fordham, such as Damian Lyons, Ph.D., a professor of computer science, R.P. Raghupathi Ph.D., a professor of information, technology and operations at Gabelli School of Business, and Lauri Goldkind, Ph.D., a professor at the Graduate School of Social Service.
Listen to the podcast by Fordham Urban Studies alumnus Patrick Verel:
Read the full transcript at Fordham News.
The New State & Local Government Law Blog
A group of prominent state and local government law scholars have launched SLoG, the State & Local Government Law blog. Launched by founding editors Meryl Chertoff (Georgetown), Nestor Davidson (Fordham), Sheila Foster (Georgetown), Daniel Rodriguez (Northwestern), David Schleicher (Yale), and Miriam Seifter (Wisconsin), SLoG is sure to be a must-read for those interested in legal questions relating to state and local government, including land-use regulation and intergovernmental relations, among other things. I recommend bookmarking the site and checking back often.
Read the full article by Jonathan H. Adler at reason.com.
Jailhouse Lawyer’s Handbook - Exploring the legacy of inside-outside organizing
As its on-going celebration of the updated sixth edition of the Jailhouse Lawyer’s Handbook, Center for Constitutional Rights Co-author and Senior Legal Worker Ian Head speaks with a number of people who have influenced and been influenced by the handbook for the 41st episode: “Jailhouse Lawyer’s Handbook: Exploring the legacy of inside-outside organizing.”
In this episode, Ian goes back to 1973 with Brian Glick, when the first Jailhouse Lawyer’s Handbook which was published as a manual to demystify the complexities of the law for non-lawyers. Brian provides the history of how the manual came to be. Jenipher Jones Bonio discusses the mission of the Jailhouse Lawyers Speak, a group of anonymous incarcerated activists working to abolish prisons and their current advocacy action, the Shut’em Down demonstrations. Lisa Drapkin talks about the impact—the number of requests for the handbook and how people on the inside use the handbook. And Chinyere Ezie highlights what's new in the handbook regarding LGBTQIA+ law, including new case law about transgender healthcare, visitation, and equal protection, and an appendix that provides state-by-state policies.
The ones who made it: leaving Guinea to build a life in Europe
Cry Like a Boy is Africanews.com’s first original podcast produced in collaboration with Euronews. The project explores the pressures linked to 'being a man' in Africa and takes a look at how men are changing themselves and their communities for the better.
“Guinean boys travel thousands kilometres to Europe for what they call ‘the adventure’, a journey essential to becoming “real men”.
They travel through the French Alps in sub-zero temperatures, without warm clothes and often without enough food to get to their final destination. A group of French people is helping the migrants who are lost to find their way.”
“Anthropologist Julie Kleinman, author of the book Adventure Capital about illegal migrants in Paris says, the desire to leave home in some West African cultures is a coming of age rite, and succeeding means you are a man.”.
Julie Kleinman: In the 19th century there are many documented cases of leaving one's village to become a man. In most of West Africa, leaving and migrating is a kind of initiation rite through which one becomes a man.”
Read the full story by Makeme Bamba & Danielle Olavario at africanews.com.
- FRI 10/29 1 PM Join Julie Kleinman in conversation with Jean Comaroff, African Studies and Anthropology, Harvard University, as part of the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research's W. E. B. Du Bois Research Institute Alumni Fellows Virtual Reading Series.
gregory t. donovan
Canaries in the Data Mine
Understanding the Proprietary Design of Youth Environments
October 22, 2020
from the publisher:
Canaries in the Data Mine offers an account of the lived experiences and cultural expectations of young people growing up in digital environments increasingly owned by others and designed for profit. At the book’s core is a participatory research project that first interviewed New York City teens about their digital habits and then engaged a group of five young people in designing the prototypical platform of their time: a social network.
In this engaging book, Gregory T. Donovan penetrates beyond the interface to consider the digital geography of contemporary youth, arguing that understanding what young people are grappling with portends what is, or will soon be, felt by society at large. Drawing from in-depth interviews and design workshops, he shows how informational capitalism is reproduced at an intimate scale as well as how involving young people in digital design can foster capacities for reworking and resisting the conditions of a rising rentier society.
Also recently published by Gregory T. Donovan:
• “Minor Data: Reading the ‘Smart’ City Through Engaged Pedagogy,” in Critical Reading Across the Curriculum, Volume II: Social and Natural Sciences (eds. Robert J. Diyanni and Anton Borst), Wiley-Blackwell, 2020.
Law And The New Urban Agenda
20% Discount: code BSE20
The Urban Law Center's newest volume, Law and the New Urban Agenda, is available now.
Given COVID-19’s impact on cities globally, it is more important than ever to highlight the significance of urban law and policy for students. This new book offers a constructive and critical valuation of the legal dimensions of the U.N.’s New Urban Agenda (NUA), adopted at the 2016 United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development to foster a globally shared understanding of the vital link between urbanization and a sustainable future. A myriad of legal challenges – and opportunities – stand between the NUA and its goals. Examining case studies from natural disasters and resulting urban migration in Honshu and Tacloban, to innovative collaborative governance in Barcelona and Turin, to the accessibility of public space for informal workers in New Delhi and Accra, and power scales among Brazil’s metropolitan regions, the contributions in this new book frame an important academic dialogue about the legal dimensions of the NUA, all of which will be of interest to scholars across the range of urban studies.
Law and the New Urban Agenda underscores the value of urban law as a discipline in supporting the healthy development of inclusive cities for all. This timely volume sheds light on the many complex challenges that urban growth poses for legal systems around the globe, and I commend this eclectic group of scholars for their engagement with the New Urban Agenda. – Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director, UN-Habitat
Pre-order Law And The New Urban Agenda.
Reform Home Rule To Protect Cities From State Interference
“We are at a moment of great urgency for local democracy. Our cities drive the global economy, with the nation’s 10 most productive metro areas alone generating a record $7.2 trillion in economic output in 2018 — more than the economies of 38 states combined.
But a critical factor determining whether they succeed is the basic structure of their legal authority. And that authority — home rule — is woefully out of date.
That’s why the National League of Cities and the Local Solutions Support Center launched a new vision for home rule: "Principles of Home Rule for the 21st Century" (PDF).
Our problems are serious, complex and deeply worrying. If we don’t seize this moment for reform, states will continue to weaken the power of cities, undermine the agency of the four out of five of us who live in cities, chill innovation in local governments and block solutions to some of our most pressing challenges — climate change, growing inequities, community safety and environmental conditions.”
- Cities must have the full breadth of legal authority necessary to govern in a rapidly changing world.
- Cities need protected fiscal authority with affirmative support from the states.
- States must exercise oversight with a greater respect for local communities whose democratic choices they are displacing.
- Home rule must protect the core of local democracy, barring the targeted attacks that are becoming a hallmark of preemption.
Prof. Kimani Paul-Emile Appointed Law and Public Affairs Fellow at Princeton University
from fordham law news:
Professor Kimani Paul-Emile has been named a 2020–2021 fellow in Princeton University’s Program in Law and Public Affairs (LAPA). Paul-Emile is Associate Director and Head of Domestic Programs and Initiatives at Fordham Law School’s Center on Race, Law & Justice and Faculty Co-Director of the Stein Center for Law & Ethics. She specializes in the areas of law and biomedical ethics, health law, anti-discrimination law, and race and the law. Paul-Emile will spend her LAPA fellowship working on a book project, tentatively titled Americans on Drugs: Six Drugs, Three Regimes, and the Making of the American Drug User.
Read the full article by Erin DeGregorio at Fordham Law News.
Fordham Law School Launches Real Estate Degree
from the observer:
Fordham School of Law will be the first law school in New York City and one of only six universities nationwide to offer a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree in real estate. The 24-credit LL.M. course will take an academic year and is “intended for attorneys looking to deepen their understanding of real estate law or to open up new career opportunities in real estate,” according to Fordham’s website.
Nestor Davidson, faculty director of the Fordham Urban Law Center and Albert A. Walsh chair in Real Estate, Land Use and Property Law, believes that there are many upsides to having a real estate master’s program situated in New York City.
“The fact that we are in the global capital of real estate makes a big difference. If you’re going to be learning about how the development process works in its most complex forms, how real estate intersects in global capital markets … you get a global perspective,” Davidson said.
Read the full article by Gus Dupree at The Observer.
Built Heritage special issue on Shanghai
A new special issue of Built Heritage, “Shanghai: Heritage at the Crossroads of Culture,” is edited by Fordham Professor of History Rosemary Wakeman. The journal is published by the College of Architecture and Urban Planning at Tongji University in Shanghai.
from wakeman's introduction:
Shanghai is among the most dynamic global cities of both the 20th and 21st centuries. The city is China’s gateway to the world and its aspirations for the future. With more than 24 million people, 40 percent of whom are migrants, it is a global crossroads and one of the most multicultural cities in the world. It has more skyscrapers than New York and a public transport system that overtakes most global cities. Shanghai is a trading city, an entrepot of commodities. It exports electronic information products, automobiles, petrochemicals, fine steel, equipment, and biomedicine. It has the highest GDP of any city in China’s mainland and has become one of the leading financial sectors in East Asia, with major Western banks flocking to its new financial centre. With well over 500 multinational companies, the city attracts more foreign investment flows than most developing countries. Along with them has come a highly-skilled workforce from all over the world. Shanghai’s urban middle-class has fuelled China’s consumer revolution and a property boom. Sleek skyscrapers and glamorous malls, its brilliant skyline, dominate the global image of Shanghai and beckon tourists to its shores.
• Rosemary Wakeman, “Shanghai and New York: Mid-Century Urban Avant-Gardes”
Read more at Built Heritage.
Empirical Evidence in the Administration of Family Law
from the regulatory review :
“Each year, reports of alleged abuse and neglect of nearly 7.5 million children reach local child welfare agencies across the United States. With so many reports, agencies need to determine which require an urgent response. Many child welfare agencies are turning to empirical evidence to help triage these cases.
“In a recent paper, Clare Huntington, a law professor at Fordham University, acknowledges that empirical evidence—especially the use of predictive analytics—can improve child welfare policies and practices. But she argues that empirical data must be used with great caution.”
Even when empirical evidence is relevant, decisionmakers must be cautious about how they use it. To guide this nuance, this Essay’s framework calls for more effective gatekeeping mechanisms across the institutions of family law. It warns decisionmakers to be attentive to the potential for empirical evidence to reflect and refract the legal salience of intersecting identities, including race, gender, and class. And the framework encourages a robust role for legal scholars to make empirical evidence accessible and comprehensible for those crafting legal rules and policies.
- Huntington, "The Empirical Turn in Family Law," Columbia Law Review 118, no. 1 (2018).
Read the full report by Meghan Downey at Penn Law's The Regulatory Review.
Why a Ghent-like system is needed in the US
from the center for american progress.org:
The Ghent system—an arrangement whereby trade unions help deliver government-supported unemployment insurance—exists in its truest form only in a handful of countries, including Sweden, Belgium, and Denmark. However, the United States has a number of Ghent-like policies where unions deliver or help people access governmental benefits—including workforce training, retirement benefits, and enforcement of workplace laws. Expanding upon these models would increase union membership and improve the quality of public programs in the United States.
In "Strengthening Labor Standards Enforcement Through Partnerships with Workers' Organizations" (Politics & Society, 2010), Fordham Professor of Law Jennifer Gordon and Janice Fine of Rutgers University argue that there is a mismatch between the enforcement strategies of most federal and state labor inspectorates and the industries in which noncompliance continues to be a problem. The authors propose augmenting labor inspectorates by giving public interest groups like unions and worker centers a formal, ongoing role in enforcement in low-wage sectors.
Under a Ghent-like co-enforcement model, government could complement its traditional enforcement activity by partnering with unions and worker organizations, Fine and Gordon have explained.
Read the full report at americanprogress.org.
Gentrification in New York
If you go out the door and are surrounded by smoothies and coffee roasters and the Craft Beer is served in jars for a great deal of money, you know this area has been thoroughly gentrified. This can be seen in Berlin as well as in New York at a glance.
New York is becoming more and more expensive, many can hardly afford the rent in the city and are repressed - and the protest against gentrification and repression has little chance. But how do the New Yorkers actually perceive it, when once rundown neighborhoods are upgraded and everything is getting more and more expensive?
Listen to the podcast with Associate Professor of Political Science Annika M. Hinze on Radiobrücke USA: