Chancellor's Professor of Law
Co-Director, Center in Law, Society and Culture
Labor and employment law, civil rights
Chancellor’s Professor of Law Catherine Fisk teaches and writes on the law of the workplace, legal history, civil rights and the legal profession. She is the author of dozens of articles and four books, including the prize-winning Working Knowledge: Employee Innovation and the Rise of the Corporate Intellectual Property, 1800-1930, and Labor Law in the Contemporary Workplace.
Her research focuses on workers at both the high end and the low end of the wage spectrum. She has written on union organizing among low-wage and immigrant workers as well as on labor issues in the entertainment industry, employee mobility in technology sectors, employer-employee disputes over attribution and ownership of intellectual property, the rights of employees and unions to engage in political activity, and labor law reform. She is the co-author, with UCI Law Professor Ann Southworth, of an innovative interdisciplinary casebook, The Legal Profession.
Her current public service includes membership on the SEIU Ethics Review Board, the Board of Directors of the Wage Justice Center, and committees of the Law & Society Association. Prior to joining the founding faculty of UC Irvine School of Law, Fisk was a chaired professor at Duke Law School, and was on the faculty of the University of Southern California Gould School of Law and Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. She practiced law at a boutique Washington, D.C. firm and at the U.S. Department of Justice. She received her J.D. at UC Berkeley, and an A.B., summa cum laude, from Princeton University.
Labor Law, Legal Profession, Practicum, Advanced Writing for the Law Review, Writing for Law Review; Labor Law; Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Discrimination Seminar; Employment and Intellectual Property Seminar; Civil Procedure; Employment Law; Employment Discrimination; Employee Benefits Seminar; Workers’ Rights Under International Law; Legislation Seminar; Legal Writing; Graduate Legal Studies
- Los Angeles Times Opinion: "Wal-Mart, Gap skirt the issue"
- Orange County Register: "No on Prop 32"
- Daily Journal column: "Government must keep contract promises" (PDF)
- Book: Working Knowledge: Employee Innovation and the Rise of Corporate Intellectual Property, 1800-1930 (University of North Carolina Press, November 2009)
- Daily Journal column: "'Penn' Is Mightier Than Decades of Court Precedent" (PDF)
- National Law Journal op-ed: "Arbitration option needed for fair negotiation"
- Book: Labor Law in the Contemporary Workplace (with Cameron, Corrada, Dau-Schmidt & Malin, West Publishing Co., 2008)
- Prof. Fisk's Scholarly Papers on SSRN
- Aug. 4:
Speaker, The History of the Writers Guild celebration event, Writers Guild of America, West and the Writers Guild Foundation
- May 23, 2015:
Prof. Fisk moderates panel "Managing Multiple Employment Arbitration Cases with Class Action Waivers" at National Academy of Arbitrators annual meeting
- Feb. 8, 2011:
UCI Chancellor's Chair Lecture
- April 16-17, 2010:
"Law As ... ": Theory and Method in Legal History" conference at UC Irvine School of Law
- Voice of OC: Prof. Fisk quoted re: OC Water District employee union case stalled by justice vacancy on Supreme Court
- The Washington Post: Prof. Fisk quoted re: labor struggles between Uber and its drivers
- ACS Blog: Prof. Fisk writes that Uber agreeing to settle class action suit by drivers does not settle employment status question
- Daily Journal: Prof. Fisk writes about Vergara teacher job security case and what would actually improve education
- The Patch: Prof. Fisk explains why "Friedrichs is unusual"
- Daily Journal: Prof. Fisk quoted on whether another Friedrichs lawsuit would make a difference (PDF)
- Times of San Diego: Prof. Fisk quoted re: key aspects of Friedrichs teacher union case and what might be ahead
- BuzzFeed News: Prof. Fisk quoted re: labor law cases that may seek re-examination by post-Scalia SCOTUS
- On Labor Blog: Prof. Fisk writes: “Why The NLRB Should Allow Graduate Student Bargaining”
- The Nation: Prof. Fisk quoted re: NLRA protection of employees’ right to strike, with no limit on length of strike
- On Labor Blog: Prof. Fisk writes: “What Scalia’s Replacement Could Mean for Workers”
- Constitution Daily: Prof. Fisk discusses in podcast Friedrichs public unions and free speech case argued at SCOTUS
- On Labor Blog: Prof. Fisk writes about Friedrichs oral arguments at SCOTUS and possible outcome
- The Atlantic: Prof. Fisk comments on politics in the workplace
- Orange County Register: Prof. Fisk writes about why to vote No on Prop. 32
- Daily Journal column: Prof. Fisk: Counties bound by promises on worker benefits (PDF)
- Mercury News: Prof. Fisk weighs in on case involving California workplace break rules
- Slate: Prof. Fisk on Congress’ probe of NLRB’s inquiry into Boeing
- The State: Prof. Fisk weighs in on NLRB labor action against Boeing
- The Nation: Prof. Fisk on what NLRB legally can do to protect workers, in light of Boeing case (Podcast)
- Bloomberg: Prof. Fisk at House hearing: Union tactics outside businesses are protected
- The Associated Press: Prof. Fisk gives states little chance of succeeding on labor voting issue
- Brian Leiter's Law School Reports: "The 'Regional' Law Schools With an Unusually Good Eye for Faculty Talent"
- Prof. Fisk appointed to union’s new ethics review board