Clinical Professor of Law
Director, International Justice Clinic
UN Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression
Public international law, international humanitarian law, human rights, international criminal justice, the law governing use of force
Prof. Kaye’s scholarship and teaching focus on public international law, especially international human rights law, international humanitarian law, accountability for violations of human rights, and the law governing the use of force. He is just as interested in efforts to translate international law—especially human rights law—in a domestic American context, whether in courts, legislatures, or the executive branches of government, at federal and state levels.
Prof. Kaye has been appointed by the UN Human Rights Council to serve as Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, effective August 1, 2014, for three years. With the assistance of students in his International Justice Clinic, Prof. Kaye will report to the UN on some of the key issues in free expression worldwide, such as the safety of journalists, severe restrictions placed on Internet access and usage, the chilling effects of electronic surveillance, hate speech and incitement to violence.
Prof. Kaye began his legal career with the U.S. State Department, handling such subjects as international claims, nuclear nonproliferation, international humanitarian law, and accountability for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. Prior to joining UC Irvine, he co-founded UCLA’s International Human Rights Program and founded its International Justice Clinic, working on projects dealing with accountability for international crimes around the world. In addition to his scholarship and teaching, Professor Kaye is an active member of the American Society of International Law, for which he served on its Executive Council and Executive Committee, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He has also published essays and opinion pieces in mainstream publications such as Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, The New York Times, and The Los Angeles Times.
As a clinical teacher, Professor Kaye aims to help students discover and put to use tools to advocate for implementation of human rights law and accountability for serious violations and to assist those worldwide who are looking to build the rule of law in their own countries. He also believes in scholarship that helps advance our understanding of how international law operates—and in translating that scholarship, as much as possible, to the broader public and policymaking communities.
Advanced International Justice Clinic, International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, International Human Rights Law, International Justice Clinic, Public International Law, International Humanitarian Law, Human Rights
David Kaye et al., The Council and the Court: Improving Security Council Support of the International Criminal Court, UC Irvine Int'l Just. Clinic (May 2013).
David Kaye, International Law Issues in the Department of Justice White Paper on Targeted Killing, 17 Am. Soc. Int'l L. Insights (2013).
David Kaye, Opinion: The Prisoners at Guantanamo, and the Rule of Law, N.Y. Times, Jan. 20, 2013.
David Kaye, Responsibility to Object: It's time for the U.N. Security Council to do something about war crimes in Syria, Foreign Pol., Jan. 10, 2013.
Dalia Dassa Kaye & David Kaye, Opinion: The right way to help Syria's rebels, L.A. Times, Aug. 8, 2012.
David Kaye, Opinion: What to do with Qaddafi, N.Y. Times, Aug. 31, 2011.
David Kaye, Wanted: Qaddafi & Co., Foreign Affairs, May 18, 2011.
David Kaye, A Jurisdiction the International Criminal Court Does Not Need, L.A. Times, June 1, 2010.
- April 25, 2017:
Speaker, “The International State of Digital Rights,” Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, Harvard University
- April 13, 2017:
Speaker, Artistic Freedom around the World: Challenges, Standards & Definitions workshop, Creative Artists Agency, Los Angeles
- March 23, 2017:
Moderator, Freedom of Opinion and Expression in Cuba, UC Irvine School of Law
- Dec. 12, 2016:
Speaker, “The Global Retreat from Reality: What the Assault on Freedom of Expression Means for Democracy’s Future,” International Human Rights Day event, Minerva Center for Human Rights at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
- Nov. 4, 2016:
Keynote speaker, Freedom of Information Laws on the Global Stage: Past, Present and Future symposium, Southwestern Law School
- Oct. 28, 2016:
Keynote Speaker, IP and Human Rights Symposium, UC Irvine School of Law
- Sept. 28, 2016:
Panelist, “Killing the Chicken to Scare the Monkey: Filmmaking in the Time of Censorship”, Getting Real ’16 conference, Los Angeles
- Sept. 20, 2016:
Panelist, “Fueling Extremism in a Wired World,” Eighth Annual Linda and Tony Rubin Lecture, Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles
- April 12-19, 2016:
UN Special Rapporteur official visit to Japan to explore media independence, access to information, other issues
- July 22, 2015:
Featured Speaker at Stanford Summer Human Rights Program
- July 15, 2015:
Closing Keynote speaker at Access CryptoSummit, Washington, D.C.
- June 3, 2015:
Speaker, Istanbul Process meeting on religious expression and tolerance, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
- May 27, 2015:
Keynote Speaker, Biennial International Cities of Refuge Network (ICORN) Meeting and PEN International Writers in Prison Committee “Creative Resistance” conference, Amsterdam
- March 27, 2015:
Panelist, “Upholding Media Freedom Through Laws and Practice,” International Press Institute World Congress, Myanmar
- March 24, 2015:
Speaker, RightsCon Southeast Asia summit on Internet and human rights, Manila, Philippines
- Dec. 4, 2014:
Keynote Speaker, 16th EU - NGO Forum on Human Rights, Brussels
- March 13, 2013:
Speaker, "International Justice and the ICC," USC Law
- Nov. 28-30, 2012:
Featured Speaker, The Council and the Court workshop, Laguna Beach
- NY Times: Prof. Kaye comments on Nikki Haley presiding over "thematic debate" on human rights
- CNN: WATCH: Prof. Kaye discusses imprisoned Turkish cartoonist
- Jewish Journal: Prof. Kaye writes in support of U.S. re-commitment to UN Human Rights Council
- Associated Press: Prof. Kaye: “Fake News” has emerged as a global concern, but there are risks to countering it
- iAfrikan News: Prof. Kaye condemns Internet shutdown in Cameroon
- The Seattle Times: Prof. Kaye: Other countries will adopt social media scanning policy if the U.S. does
- The Guardian: Prof. Kaye writes: How do you solve a problem like Milo Yiannopoulos at Berkeley?
- ABC Radio (Australia): LISTEN: Prof. Kaye discusses Trump's executive orders, legal challenges, and the rule of law
- CNET: Prof. Kaye urges Obama to consider a pardon for Edward Snowden
- The Independent: Prof. Kaye raises concerns about UK Digital Economy Bill giving government access to viewing habits and citizen data
- The Guardian: Prof. Kaye quoted: British bill requiring age verification on porn websites poses risks to individuals’ privacy
- Reuters: Prof. Kaye writes: The high price of Turkey’s ‘witch-burning’ crackdown
- Just Security: Prof. Kaye writes about government lawyers working for Trump administration
- Financial Times: Prof. Kaye quoted re: “dimunition on the importance of fact” in the media that impacted the presidential election
- UN Web TV: Video of Prof. Kaye press conference before presenting his latest report on freedom of opinion & expression to UN General Assembly
- Reuters: Prof. Kaye quoted re: teen blogger sent to jail in Singapore
- Jewish Journal: Prof. Kaye’s comments on social media at “Fueling Extremism in a Wired World” panel quoted
- Silicon Republic: Prof. Kaye quoted re: weakening of online security caused by intentionally compromising encryption
- U.S. News: Prof. Kaye urges Malaysia government to repeal laws restricting free speech
- Morgenbladet: Prof. Kaye interviewed in Norwegian newspaper re: French counter-terrorism law
- The Guardian: Prof. Kaye and two press freedom groups condemn Turkish government crackdown on media following failed coup
- The Guardian: On podcast, Prof. Kaye discusses UN resolution classifying internet access a basic human right
- Foreign Policy: Article on silencing of Japanese press details Prof. Kaye’s April visit and report
- News Roundup: Prof. Kaye comments in major media on threats to media freedom in Japan
- Financial Times: Prof. Kaye says trends in media independence in Japan are “really worrying,” urges reform of country’s broadcasting law (PDF)
- Reuters: Prof. Kaye quoted re: security and free speech concerns raised by government’s encryption battle with Apple
- BuzzFeed News: Prof. Kaye writes amicus brief supporting Apple in legal dispute against FBI
- PRI: Prof. Kaye raises concerns about court ordering Apple to help FBI break into iPhone of San Bernardino shooter
- The Washington Post/Chicago Tribune: Prof. Kaye quoted re: importance of encryption and anonymity for freedom of opinion, expression (PDF)
- Los Angeles Times: Upcoming Freedom of Expression discussion with Dean Chemerinsky, Prof. Kaye, Prof. Wasserstrom and others previewed
- HuffPost Live: Prof. Kaye interviewed re: need for governments to protect whistleblowers, journalists (video)
- Vice News: Prof. Kaye’s UN report calls for greater protections for journalists, whistleblowers worldwide
- Human Rights Watch on YouTube: Video highlights Prof. Kaye’s new report on need to protect whistle blowers, features Edward Snowden
- UN Web TV: At UN press conference, Prof. Kaye explains his report on need for greater protections of whistleblowers
- Slate: Prof. Kaye co-authors piece about efforts towards universal internet access
- The Guardian: Prof. Kaye quoted re: lack of public accountability at the UN
- AP: Prof. Kaye quoted re: growing use of anti-terror legislation to detain journalists
- The Washington Post: Prof. Kaye makes statement re: Iran’s continued detention of Washington Post correspondent
- Slate: Prof. Kaye’s report on encryption and anonymity also notes surveillance systems undermine freedom of opinion
- Center for Democracy & Technology Blog: Prof. Kaye presents landmark report on anonymity and encryption to UN Human Rights Council
- Just Security: Prof. Kaye’s report on encryption and anonymity previewed before presentation to UN Human Rights Council
- KPCC 89.3 FM: Prof. Kaye in radio interview about Obama speech
- Los Angeles Times: Prof. Kaye writes letter on Guantanamo Bay
- Foreign Affairs: Prof. Kaye writes on the International Criminal Court
- The David Pakman Show: Prof. Kaye on possible war crimes by Bush administration
- Institute for War and Peace Reporting: Prof. Kaye comments on issues hampering ICC prosecutions
- The Christian Science Monitor: Prof. Kaye comments on lawsuit against movie "Argo"
- Ria Novosti: Prof. Kaye comments on legality of U.S. drone strikes
- Talking Points Memo: Prof. Kaye on how indictment of Iranian president would work
- Jewish Journal: Prof. Kaye compares foreign policies of the presidential candidates
- Jewish Journal: Prof. Kaye discusses human rights violations in Iran