In July 2023, Jessica M. Eaglin joined the Cornell Law School faculty as a professor of law. She was previously the Harry T. Ice Faculty Fellow and a professor of law at Indiana University Maurer School of Law.
Eaglin writes about criminal legal reforms adopted in response to the economic and social pressures of mass incarceration. Much of her work focuses on the proliferation of information technologies in criminal legal institutions, in particular algorithmic risk assessment tools at sentencing, and the obscured perils they present for marginalized populations, the courts, and society more broadly.
“I am excited to join Cornell Law’s rich intellectual community,” says Eaglin. “I look forward to working with the impressive students here in the coming months.”
Previously, Eaglin served as counsel in the Justice Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, where she assisted in a national campaign aimed at addressing mass incarceration in the United States. She clerked with the Hon. Damon J. Keith for the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals and began her law career as a litigation associate at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett in New York City. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Spelman College, as well as an M.A. in literature and a J.D. from Duke Law School.
Eaglin’s articles have appeared or are forthcoming in various law journals and other outlets, including California Law Review, Cornell Law Review, Stanford Law Review Online, and more. She is in the process of writing her first book, Transformation in the Dark: Informational Criminal Legal Practices and Racial Difference in the Digital Age (forthcoming Cambridge University Press 2024).
“Professor Eaglin’s path-breaking work on algorithms in criminal sentencing created a new area for legal scholarship and was influential both within the legal academy and outside of it,” says Jens Ohlin, Allan R. Tessler Dean and Professor of Law.
“Cornell Law School students will benefit from her teaching and scholarship. When combined with our stellar faculty already working in this area, her arrival makes Cornell Law School the leading faculty for criminal law scholarship in the country. I’m so grateful that she has chosen Myron Taylor Hall as her intellectual home.”