Home Blog Faculty Spotlight: Bringing Together Computer Science and Law

Faculty Spotlight: Bringing Together Computer Science and Law

February 10, 2021
Cardozo School of Law professor Felix Wu

How does intellectual property impact data privacy and other technology law fields?

That’s just one area of expertise for Professor Felix Wu. Having taught at Cardozo School of Law since 2009, Wu also serves as the faculty director of the Cardozo Data Law Initiative, a program that’s helping law students succeed in growing fields such as information governance, e-discovery, data privacy, social media, and cybersecurity. He’s lectured around the globe on his research about intellectual property and information law, focusing on areas such as data privacy and protection, freedom of expression, and trademark law.

In addition, Wu is one of the Cardozo faculty members teaching in the online LL.M. in Intellectual Property.

“A Cardozo education is rooted in both theory and practice,” he said. “We aim to teach students both the broad conceptual abilities that will allow them to think flexibly and thrive amidst changing laws and changing circumstances, and the specific laws and skills they need to effectively counsel clients today.”

For Wu, the online LL.M. program is making Cardozo more readily accessible to lawyers who can’t make it to New York City and to those who need a more flexible degree option. Embracing new technologies and approaches like this is an important part of his own courses as well as the law school as a whole. He sees how that innovation extends to its online LL.M. program.

“Courses engage with cutting-edge issues, but also professors think carefully not just about what to teach but also how to teach it in an engaging and effective way, far beyond merely lecturing on material.”

Part of that innovation comes from the law school’s extensive network, which includes alumni practicing in 70 countries around the globe. Cardozo’s location in New York City gives on-campus and online students the opportunity to take advantage of internships, networking, as well as university and city events.

“Even students not physically in New York benefit from our New York connections, whether through courses taught by New York practitioners or New York-based events that they can attend virtually. Moreover, we have a substantial and ever-growing alumni network in Germany and elsewhere in Europe that students can draw from both before and after they graduate.”

Wu believes that Cardozo provides students with a challenging but practical legal education, especially in his specialties in intellectual property and data and privacy law.

“Cardozo’s combination of expertise, careful attention to teaching, extensive networks, and access to New York sets it apart from other programs,” said Wu.

Where Computer Science and Law Meet

Wu took an unusual path to Cardozo. He began thinking about pursuing law while he was studying computer science at the University of California at Berkeley. He was earning his PhD.

“I worked briefly on designing digital rights management systems and in doing so came to realize that both law and technology could play a role in solving important problems, and that law and technology could interact in complex, interesting ways,” Wu explained.

When he decided to transition away from practicing the law to focus on teaching, he did so for a number of reasons. It gave him the opportunity to research and write about issues that were much broader than what he could work on day to day. The move also allowed him the opportunity to influence the next generation of lawyers and how they looked at the law.

“As for how I chose Cardozo, I knew when I met the other professors here that these were people I wanted to be colleagues with,” Wu said. “That was true when I started and remains true today.”

Wu notes that Cardozo’s faculty are experts in intellectual property, data and technology law, constitutional law, criminal justice, and dispute resolution among many other fields.

His own work combines his expertise in law and computer science to study privacy and data protection among other projects. Many issues in technology law require individuals with a strong understanding of tech’s limitations and what the law outlines. Without an understanding of both, Wu believes that it’s impossible to understand common tech problems on a holistic level.

Take control of your legal career.

Intellectual property law impacts organizations across industries. While creative fields such as music, film, and art are often the first to come to mind, lawyers and legal scholars like Wu know how critical this practice is in emerging tech.

That’s why the online LL.M. in Intellectual Property at Cardozo is designed to prepare graduates to enter every industry. Our curriculum focuses how the foundations of intellectual property law overlap in industries as diverse as data, privacy, fashion, film, and more. This coursework is taught by experts like Wu, who have dedicated their careers to practicing and studying the law. The faculty at Cardozo have been recognized for their impact in the academic space. They’ve been ranked No. 321 and No. 222 by separate national law school rankings.

Our online LL.M. program is open to U.S. lawyers with a J.D. and international lawyers with a first law degree such as an LLB from an accredited foreign institution.

  1. Sisk, Gregory C. and Catlin, Nicole and Veenis, Katherine and Zeman, Nicole, Scholarly Impact of Law School Faculties in 2018: Updating the Leiter Score Ranking for the Top Third (2018). 15 University of St. Thomas Law Journal 95 (2018), Available at SSRN: ssrn.com/abstract=3230371 or dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3230371
  2. Heald, Paul J. and Sichelman, Ted M., Ranking the Academic Impact of 100 American Law Schools (December 4, 2019). 60 Jurimetrics 1 (Fall 2019), Available at SSRN: ssrn.com/abstract=3483325