Law and Public Policy


The law is the underpinning of our criminal justice system, and John Jay faculty members are active contributors to the field of legal scholarship and public policy. Their areas of expertise include the relationship between state and society, the social impact of the regulatory apparatus, and comparative legal systems.

Roddrick Colvin (Department of Public Management) studies gay rights, hate crimes, and international human rights policies.

Cynthia Mercado (Department of Psychology) investigates empirical evidence for use in sex offender policy and sexual violence prevention. She is currently examining sex offender treatment, civil commitment, and risk for recidivism in New Jersey.

Daniel Pinello (Department of Political Science) studies gay rights and the law and is currently researching the implementation and grassroots effects of Super-DOMAs, which are state constitutional amendments banning recognition of all forms of relationship rights for same-sex couples.

Yuksel Sezgin (Department of Political Science) studies comparative law and legal pluralism, informal justice systems, religious law, state-society relations, human rights and Middle Eastern and South Asian affairs.

Karen Terry (Department of Criminal Justice) studies sex offender policy and has been involved with numerous research projects regarding sexual offenses and offenders.

Toy-Fung Tung (Department of English) researches Latin legal traditions as well as Augustine, and 12th century historian-theologians.

Monica Varsanyi (Department of Political Science) studies law and public policy as well as (Im)migration, urban, and citizenship studies; urban and political geography; and immigration and the state (particularly undocumented immigration).

Joshua Wilson (Department of Political Science) researches the varying abilities of political and social movements to use law - broadly defined - in the pursuit of political ends. He is particularly interested in the use of law by conservative public interests law firms and movements.