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Emily Ryo

Emily Ryo

Associate Professor of Law and Sociology

Last Updated: Wednesday, June 21, 2017

699 Exposition Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90089-0074 USA Room: 406
Personal Website: Link
SSRN Author Page: Link

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Emily Ryo is an associate professor of law and sociology at the USC Gould School of Law. She received a JD from Harvard Law School and a PhD in Sociology from Stanford University. Immediately prior to joining USC, she was a research fellow at Stanford Law School. She served as a law clerk to the Honorable M. Margaret McKeown of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and practiced law at the international law firm of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen, and Hamilton.

Her current research focuses on immigration, criminal justice, legal attitudes and legal noncompliance, and procedural justice. She approaches these issues through innovative interdisciplinary lenses, using diverse quantitative and qualitative methods. As an empirical legal scholar, she has published widely in both leading sociology and law journals. She has been awarded the 2017 Andrew Carnegie Fellowship to support her scholarship.



  • "Representing Immigrants: The Role of Lawyers in Immigration Bond Hearings," forthcoming in Law & Society Review.
  • "Predicting Danger in Immigration Courts," forthcoming in Law and Social Inquiry.
  • “Fostering Legal Cynicism through Immigration Detention,” 90 Southern California Law Review 999 (2017). - (PDF) - (SSRN) - (bepress)
  • "On Normative Effects of Immigration Law," 13 Stanford Journal of Civil Rights & Civil Liberties 95 (2017). - (SSRN) - (Hein)
  • "The Promise of a Subject-Centered Approach to Understanding Immigration Noncompliance," 5 Journal on Migration and Human Security 285 (2017). - (PDF) - (www)
  • “Legal Attitudes of Immigrant Detainees,” 51 Law & Society Review 99 (2017). - (SSRN) - (bepress) - (www)
  • “Detained: A Study of Immigration Bond Hearings,” 50 Law & Society Review 117 (2016). - (SSRN) - (bepress) - (www)
  • “Less Enforcement, More Compliance: Rethinking Unauthorized Migration,” 62 UCLA Law Review 622 (2015) - (www) - (SSRN) - (bepress) - (Hein)
  • “Moral Judgments, Expressive Functions, and Bias in Immigration Law,” 35 Immigration and Nationality Law Review 3 (2014). - (SSRN) - (bepress)
  • "Deciding to Cross: The Norms and Economics of Unauthorized Migration," 78 American Sociological Review 574 (2013). - (www) - (bepress)
  • "Poverty Alleviation through Public Works," in Rebuild America: Solving the Economic Crisis through Civic Works (Scott Myers-Lipston ed.) (Boulder, CO: Paradigm Publishers, 2009).
  • "The Lost Sanctuary: Examining Sex Trafficking through the Lens of United Status v. Ah Sou," 41 Cornell International Law Journal 739 (2008) (with Hon. M. Margaret McKeown). - (Hein) - (bepress)
  • "Culture of Poverty," in Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity, and Society (Richard T. Schaefer ed.) (Thousan Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2008).
  • "Organizational Diversity, Vitality, and Outcomes in the Civil Rights Movement," 85 Social Forces 1561 (2007) (with Susan Olzak). - (bepress) - (Hein)
  • "Through the Back Door: Applying Theories of Legal Compliance to Illegal Immigration During the Chinese Exclusion Era," 31 Law and Social Inquiry 109 (2006). - (Hein) - (bepress)
  • "Did Katrina Recalibrate Attitudes Towards Poverty and Inequality? A Test of the 'Dirty Little Secret' Hypothesis," 3 Du Bois Review 59 (2006) (with D. Grusky). - (bepress) - (www)
  • "Elusive Citizenship: Immigration, Asian Americans, and the Paradox of Civil Rights," 2 Law, Culture and Humanities 472 (2006) (book review). - (www)


March 13, 2018
Re: Orin Kerr

Orin Kerr was quoted about the need for legal restraint when deciding cases involving cyberspace. "Criminal law is a blunt instrument that should be used only as a last resort," said Kerr. "The state's power to deny individuals their freedom is an extraordinary power, and it should be reserved for harms that other mechanisms cannot remedy."


Robert K. Rasmussen
January, 2018

"Puerto Rico and the Netherworld of Sovereign Debt Restructuring," Workshop, Duke Law School, Durham, NC. 

Pauline Aranas
January, 2018

Pauline Aranas participated on a panel on "Effective Assessment:  Measuring Your Law Library's Impact" at the Association of American Law School's Annual Meeting in San Diego, CA.

Pauline Aranas
January, 2018

Pauline Aranas concluded her year-year term on the Executive Committee of the Association of American Law School's Section on Law Libraries and Legal Information.