Associate Professor of Law
Copyright, Steve Hambuchen
Legal Research Center
Ozan O. Varol teaches in the areas of constitutional law, criminal law and procedure, comparative constitutional law, and Islamic law. His recent scholarship has focused on constitutional transitions and constitutional design. He also lectures and writes about civil-military relations and law and politics in the Middle East.
Professor Varol is the author of 11 law review articles published or forthcoming in the California Law Review, UC Davis Law Review, Iowa Law Review (twice), Harvard International Law Journal, Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, and the International Journal of Constitutional Law (peer-reviewed), among many other academic journals. His scholarship has been featured in various domestic and foreign media outlets, including CNN, Washington Post, Slate, and Foreign Policy. He is the only scholar to twice receive the American Society of Comparative Law’s Younger Comparativists Prize.
Professor Varol’s publication, Temporary Constitutions, was selected as one of the best three papers in the 2014 AALS Scholarly Papers Competition, which is widely considered the most prestigious in legal education, and awarded “Honorable Mention.” In addition, his article, The Democratic Coup d’État, was identified in a review by Professor Mark Tushnet (Harvard Law School) as “one of the best works of recent scholarship relating to constitutional law.” The same article was selected to be featured on an on-line symposium with invited responses by other legal scholars.
Professor Varol is the Vice-Chair of the Younger Comparativists Committee in the American Society of Comparative Law, which is the premier global organization for younger comparative law scholars. He also serves as a legal consultant for the U.S. Department of Defense and to private entities on issues involving Turkish law.
Before entering academia, Professor Varol served as a law clerk for the Honorable Carlos T. Bea of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He also practiced law at Keker & Van Nest LLP in San Francisco, where he worked on complex civil and white-collar criminal defense litigation.
Professor Varol received his law degree from the University of Iowa College of Law, where he graduated first in his class, earning the highest grade point average in the history of the law school since the introduction of the 4-point grading scale. During law school, he also served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Iowa Law Review. He has a bachelor’s degree in planetary sciences from Cornell University, where he was a College Scholar and a member of the operations team for the 2003 Mars Exploration Rovers mission. Professor Varol is a native of Istanbul, Turkey, and lived there for 17 years before coming to the United States for his undergraduate studies.
Specialty Areas & Course Descriptions
- B.A. 2003 Cornell University
- J.D. 2007 University of Iowa, with highest distinction
Works Published As Part of a Collection
- Constitutional Stickiness, 49 UC Davis Law Review __ (forthcoming 2016). SSRN LINK
- Stealth Authoritarianism, 100 Iowa Law Review 1673 (2015) SSRN LINK
- Temporary Constitutions, 102 California Law Review 409 (2014). SSRN LINK
- Revolutionary Humor, 23 Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal 555 (2014). SSRN LINK
- The Turkish “Model” of Civil-Military Relations, 11 International Journal of Constitutional Law 727 (2013). SSRN LINK
- The Military as the Guardian of Constitutional Democracy, 51 Columbia Journal of Transnational Law 547 (2013). SSRN LINK
- The Democratic Coup d’État, 53 Harvard International Law Journal 292 (2012). SSRN LINK
- The Origins and Limits of Originalism: A Comparative Study, 44 Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law 1239 (2011). SSRN LINK
- Strict in Theory, But Accommodating in Fact?, 75 Missouri Law Review 1243 (2010). SSRN LINK
- Is Secularism Possible in a Majority-Muslim Country?: The Turkish Example, 42 University of Texas International Law Journal 1 (2008) (with Adrien K. Wing). SSRN LINK
- Substantive Due Process, Plenary-Power Doctrine, and Minimum Contacts: Arguments for Overcoming the Obstacle of Asserting Personal Jurisdiction over Terrorists Under the Anti-Terrorism Act, 92 Iowa Law Review 297 (2006) (student note).