Faculty Notes

Prof. Vern Walker Presents at JURIX 2011 in Vienna, Austria

Vern R. Walker, Professor of Law and Director of the Research Laboratory for Law, Logic and Technology

Professor Vern R. Walker presented a paper at the peer-reviewed workshop on Fundamental Concepts and the Systematization of Law, part of the JURIX 2011 conference in Vienna, Austria, on 14-16 December 2011.

The presentation was titled “Meaning, Logic, and the Systematization of Law: Kelsen, Wittgenstein and Information Architecture.” Professor Walker discussed the systematization of law from the perspectives of linguistic meaning and logic, by focusing on themes from two leading theorists of the last century from Vienna, Hans Kelsen and Ludwig Wittgenstein. The presentation illustrated how theories of meaning and logic can influence one’s view of law as a system, and can influence the development of an information architecture for legal knowledge.

The presentation used, as one concrete example, ongoing empirical research at Hofstra Law’s Research Laboratory for Law, Logic and Technology — research that utilizes a many-valued, default-logic framework to represent the reported reasoning of decision makers in law, and in particular to create logic models for the evidence assessment of factfinders.