Ari Waldman

Professor of Law
Ari Waldman


Privacy law, law and technology, sociolegal studies, empirical methods, digital governance, science and technology studies, LGBTQ+/queer studies


Ari Ezra Waldman (he or they) is a Professor of Law at the University of California, Irvine. He is internationally recognized in academic, advocacy, and policy circles for his expertise at the intersection of law, technology and society. Recognizing the impact of law and technology on marginalized and minoritized groups, he has dedicated his research to understanding the social dynamics of law, particularly with respect to privacy, artificial intelligence, misinformation, and the LGBTQ+ community

Professor Waldman is an accomplished scholar, having published two influential books: "Privacy As Trust: Information Privacy for an Information Age" (Cambridge University Press, 2018) and "Industry Unbound: The Inside Story of Privacy, Data, and Corporate Power" (Cambridge University Press, 2021), both of which have won several awards. His scholarly articles have been published or are forthcoming in leading law reviews and peer-reviewed journals, such as the Columbia Law Review, California Law Review, Michigan Law Review (twice), Northwestern University Law Review, Cornell Law Review, as well as Law & Social Inquiry, Big Data & Society, and the Journal of Business Ethics, among others. He has reached a broader audience through his contributions to publications like The New York Times, Slate, New York Daily News, and The Advocate. He also serves on the editorial board of Law & Social Inquiry, a distinguished peer-reviewed journal that traverses sociolegal issues across multiple disciplines, fostering a comprehensive understanding of law and society.

Professor Waldman has earned numerous awards, fellowships and research grants. Notably, he was honored as one of 2020's Top Fifty Thinkers by Prospect magazine, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with heads of state, leading social justice advocates and renowned scholars. His dedication to privacy law and research has been acknowledged through prestigious accolades such as the Best Paper Award at the Privacy Law Scholars Conference in 2017 and 2019 (to date, the only person to win the award twice for single-author pieces), the Privacy Papers for Policymakers Award in 2019, and the Otto L. Walter Distinguished Writing Award in 2016 and 2019. He delivered the distinguished 2018 Deirdre G. Martin Memorial Lecture on Privacy at the University of Ottawa. His commitment to advancing the understanding of technology-facilitated intimate partner violence earned him a Belfer Fellowship from the Anti-Defamation League's Center for Democracy and Technology, as well as competitive research grants from the Knight Foundation. In 2022, he was selected as one of the Humanities Center Fellows from across Northeastern University.

Elected to the American Law Institute in 2019, he actively contributes to shaping legal developments. He has testified before the United States Congress twice and once before the New York State Assembly. Additionally, he serves on the board of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC). In 2020, Professor Waldman was elected chair of the Privacy Law Scholars Conference (PLSC), the premier academic conference in the field of law and technology. During his initial three-year term, he prioritized enhancing accessibility to PLSC, standardizing policies, and fostering an anti-subordination/anti-racism law and technology community.

Professor Waldman is the founder of @Legally_Queer, a groundbreaking social media initiative aimed at educating the public about the history, present and future of LGBTQ+ freedom. By offering accessible summaries and contextualizing landmark LGBTQ+ cases and laws "on this date in history," Legally Queer actively engages both the LGBTQ+ community and the wider public in understanding the pivotal role courts play in achieving equality and social justice. He looks forward to working with UCI Law’s outstanding students to grow the project.

Prior to UCI Law, Professor Waldman was a professor of law and computer science at Northeastern University, where he directed the School of Law’s Center for Law, Information, and Creativity. He was also a visiting scholar at Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy at and a visiting professor at the School of Public and International Affairs. Earlier in his career, Professor Waldman clerked for Judge Scott W. Stucky at the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces. He holds a Ph.D. in sociology from Columbia University, complemented by a J.D. from Harvard Law School and an A.B., magna cum laude, from Harvard College.

Recent Publications

  • Gender Data in the Automated Administrative State, 124 Columbia Law Review __ (forthcoming 2024)
  • Opening the Gender Box, Law & Social Inquiry (2024)
  • Forward: Framing Managerialism as an Object of Study and Strategic Displacement, 86 Law & Contemporary Problems __ (forthcoming 2023) (with Julie Cohen)
  • Policing Queer Sexuality, 121 Michigan Law Review __ (forthcoming 2023)
  • Manufactured Uncertainty in Constitutional Litigation, 91 Fordham Law Review 2249 (2023)
  • Disorderly Content, 97 Washington Law Review 907 (2022)
  • Privacy’s Rights Trap, 117 Northwestern University Law Review 88 (2022)
  • Privacy, Practice, and Performance, 110 California Law Review 1221 (2022)
  • Governing Algorithmic Decisions: The Role of Decision Importance and Governance on Perceived Legitimacy, Big data & society (2022) (with Kirsten Martin)
  • Are Algorithmic Decisions Legitimate? The Effect of Process and Outcomes on Perceptions of Legitimacy of AI Decisions, Journal of Business Ethics (2022) (with Kirsten Martin)
  • Social Norms and Fourth Amendment Law, 120 Michigan Law Review 265 (2021) (with Matthew Tokson)
  • The New Privacy Law, 55 U.C. Davis Law Review Online 19 (2021)
  • Outsourcing Privacy, 96 Notre Dame Law Review Disclosure 194 (2021)

(see more in CV)

  • March 23, 2024
    Speaker, West Coast Sexuality, Gender, and the Law Conference, “Legibility Dilemmas and State Collection of Gender Data”
  • March 12, 2024
    VIDEO: Testified before the U.S. House Government & Accountability Committee's Cybersecurity, Information Technology, and Government Innovation subcommittee hearing entitled, “Addressing Real Harm Done by Deepfakes”

  • Named Humanities Center Fellow, Northeastern University (2022-2023).
  • Appointed to Editorial Board, Law & Social Inquiry (2021-2014)
  • Won two competitive grants from the Anti-Monopoly Fund of the Economic Security Project ($30,000 and $15,000) to study misinformation in the law and to develop a new paradigm for privacy governance.
  • Won two competitive internal grants at Northeastern University ($50,000 each) to study social surveillance and discrimination on platforms (2021-2023).
  • Named Top 50 Thinker of 2020, Prospect UK Magazine.
  • Won Knight Foundation grant ($25,000) for research on misinformation (2021-2022)
  • Won Faculty Excellence Award, 2021, Fordham University School of Law, Fordham OutLaws.

Prior Courses:

(Log in to view full course descriptions in the UCI Law Course Catalog)