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Teaching the Technical Aspects of Cybersecurity to Law and Policy Students: Come Join Our Team in Austin!

By Robert Chesney
Wednesday, February 20, 2019, 2:41 PM

Tacos and sunshine. SXSW and a booming, tech-focused economy. Barbeque and live music all over. All that, plus a chance to work with a team that is kind, fun, and eager to innovate in the classroom and in policy-relevant writing.

What’s this all about? Well, when not writing for Lawfare or doing professor stuff, I’m the director of UT-Austin’s Robert Strauss Center, which is a cross-campus interdisciplinary unit that sponsors novel courses, policy-relevant writing, and high-impact events across a wide-range of topics. Among other things, we have a rapidly-growing cybersecurity-focused program that emphasizes interdisciplinary cross-training: we want our law students to be literate with respect to technology and policy, we want the policy students to understand the law and technology, and we want the computer science and engineering students to understand law and policy (and other units too…I’m just mentioning those three to keep this brief!). We are fortunate to have strong support from the Hewlett Foundation and its remarkable Cyber Initiative, and the program is expanding rapidly. All of which brings me to my point: I’m looking to hire!

Specifically, I’m offering a generous (commensurate with experience) teaching-and-research fellowship in residence with the Strauss Center, with a one-year term but a possibility of renewal if it goes well for all concerned.

The ideal candidate will have a strong technical foundation in computer and network security combined with a knack for translating that knowledge for law and policy grad students. Does that sound like you, or someone you know? I’m open to hearing from anyone who likes the idea of helping law and policy students gain a degree of technical literacy (notice I did not say fluency!), and who also would be able to take energetic and creative advantage of the fellowship to engage in policy-relevant writing, take part in the broader life of our programs, mentor students, and whatever other ideas you might want to pitch.

Even if this is not your cup of tea, please spread the word to others who might be interested. Diversity of all sorts is most welcome, of course, as are preliminary inquiries if you think you might apply but need to know something more.

Deadline to apply:


Where to apply:

Just email me (

What should you submit:

In the text of the email, tell me anything you’d like me to know about

(1) what you’d do, ideally, if given this chance;

(2) your qualifications;

(3) how this fits in with your career trajectory/goals (note that we have no preconceived notions regarding the amount of experience a person should have for this position; it could be very little or a whole lot); and

(4) a list of three recommenders (these should be people with whom you have worked who can speak with experience regarding qualities like collegiality, kindness, and communication skills).

Current weather in Austin:

Just thought I’d mention that today’s high will be 63, with clear blue skies. Of course, I should add that this position does not require you to be in residence in the summer….

Ok, that’s it for now. I am excited to hear from some of you! Spread the word!!!