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Bernadette Atuahene

Bernadette Atuahene headshot

Research Professor

Joint appointment

Assistant Professor, Chicago-Kent College of Law


J.D., Yale Law School; M.P.A., Harvard University


Bernadette Atuahene is a professor of law at Chicago-Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology, and a research professor at the American Bar Foundation. She earned her J.D. at Yale Law School in 2002, her M.P.A. at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government in 2002, and earned her B.A. in 1997 (magna cum laude) from the University of California, Los Angeles. Professor…

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Research focus

Law and international development, particularly the dispossession and restitution of property rights in the developing world. Research has examined the challenges faced by transitional democracies that provide compensation for past property dispossession as well as how land titling programs can best address urban poverty.


Cover of We Want What We Want What's Ours: Learning from South Africa's Land Restitution Program
Oxford University Press
“Paying for the Past: Addressing Past Property Violations in South Africa"
Law and Society Review
“Property and Transitional Justice"
UCLA Law Review Discourse

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Nelson Mandela's Uneven Legacy

Dec 30, 2014

In a December 2014 LA Times op-ed, Atuahene discusses the legacy of South Africa's first black president, Nelson Mandela.

Haiti: Has God Turned His Back on the Country?

Mar 10, 2010

January 28, 2010 blog posting on the Huffington Post entitled Haiti: Has God Turned His Back on the Country?

We Need to Anticipate Terrorists, Not React to Them

Mar 10, 2010

January 4, 2010 blog posting on the Huffington Post entitle We Need to Anticipate Terrorists, Not React to Them. Based on her Huffington Post blog post about the Nigerian terrorist, the BBC Radio…

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We Want What's Ours: Learning from South Africa's Land Restitution Program
Jan 2014
Speaker, Workshop on Poverty, Immigration and Property
Jun 2013
Property-Induced Invisibility: When the Expropriation of Property Removes People from the Social Contract
Oct 2012

All presentations »

Professional Service & Recognition

  • Associate Editor, Law & Social Inquiry

  • Trustee, Law & Society Association

  • Fellow, Program in Law and Public Affairs, Princeton University

  • Fellow, Woodhull Institute for Ethical Leadership

  • Editor, SSRN Transitional Justice eJournal

  • International Affairs Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations

  • Adviser to Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Collins on the legal challenge to the Illinois Act to End Atrocities and Terrorism in Sudan

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