Paul Gewirtz

Paul D. Gewirtz (born May 12, 1947[1]) is the Potter Stewart Professor of Constitutional Law at Yale Law School and the Director of the Paul Tsai China Center at Yale.

Paul Gewirtz
Born (1947-05-12) May 12, 1947
Alma materColumbia University
Yale Law School
Scientific career
FieldsLaw, U.S. Foreign Policy, China
InstitutionsYale Law School


Gewirtz received his A.B. degree summa cum laude from Columbia University in 1967 and his J.D. degree from Yale Law School in 1970. After graduation, he worked as a law clerk for the U.S. District Judge Marvin E. Frankel from 1970 to 1971, and as a law clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall from 1971 to 1972. He was admitted to the bar in Washington, D.C., and was a lawyer at Wilmer Cutler & Pickering and then the Center for Law and Social Policy in Washington, D.C. He joined the faculty at Yale Law School in 1976. In 1994 he was appointed the Potter Stewart Professor of Constitutional Law. He teaches and writes in various legal and policy fields, including constitutional law, U.S. foreign policy and law, U.S.-China relations, antidiscrimination law, federal courts, Chinese law, and law and literature.

Gewirtz played various roles in the administration of President Bill Clinton. He served as the U.S. representative at the European Commission for Democracy through Law of the Council of Europe from 1996 to 2000, and was a consultant to the Solicitor General of the United States in 1997. From 1997-1998, he was on leave of absence from Yale University to serve in President Clinton's administration as Special Representative for the Presidential Rule of Law Initiative. In that post, he developed and led the U.S.-China initiative to cooperate in the legal field that President Clinton and China's President Jiang Zemin agreed to at their 1997 and 1998 Summit meetings.

In 1996 Gewirtz was the founder of Yale Law School's Global Constitutionalism Seminar, which brings Supreme Court judges from around the world to Yale each year, and he served as its Director until 2006. After returning to Yale from the Clinton Administration, Gewirtz founded Yale Law School's China Center in 1999, originally named The China Law Center and renamed the Paul Tsai China Center in 2014, and has been its Director since then. The Paul Tsai China Center does research and teaching, and also undertakes projects with Chinese counterparts to seek to advance China's legal reforms and improve U.S.–China relations. In 2015 Gewirtz was named to Foreign Policy magazine's Pacific Power Index, a list of "50 people shaping the future of the U.S.-China relationship."

He was married to Zoë Baird from 1986 to 2008, and he has two sons, Julian and Alec.

Selected publications


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