James Dillon’s scholarship examines the legal construction of knowledge, particularly scientific expertise, from an interdisciplinary perspective emphasizing political theory, epistemology, the sociology of scientific knowledge, and cognitive psychology. He seeks to understand the doctrinal, institutional, and epistemological barriers to courts’ application of scientific expertise to the resolution of legal disputes. He also seeks to understand more generally the challenges that entrenched social disagreement on matters of empirical fact pose to policymakers in a liberal democratic state.
Dillon is a Ph.D. candidate in Jurisprudence and Social Policy at the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to beginning his Ph.D., Dillon worked as an associate attorney in the litigation departments of Sullivan & Cromwell LLP and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, both in New York City, and as a law clerk to the Honorable I. Leo Glasser, Senior U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of New York. He attended New York University Law School and holds a Master of Arts in Philosophy from NYU, where he wrote his thesis on John Rawls’s principle of public reason and its treatment in the constitutional doctrine of the U.S. Supreme Court. Dillon has also served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of California’s Hastings College of the Law, where he taught Civil Procedure.