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Prof. Cohen is one of the world's leading experts on the intersection of bioethics (sometimes also called "medical ethics") and the law, as well as health law. He also teaches civil procedure. From Seoul to Krakow to Vancouver, Professor Cohen has spoken at legal, medical, and industry conferences around the world and his work has appeared in or been covered on PBS, NPR, ABC, CNN, MSNBC, Mother Jones, the New York Times, the New Republic, the Boston Globe, and several other media venues.
He was the youngest professor on the faculty at Harvard Law School (tenured or untenured) both when he joined the faculty in 2008 (at age 29) and when he was tenured as a full professor in 2013 (at age 34).
Prof. Cohen's current projects relate to health information technologies, mobile health, reproduction/reproductive technology, research ethics, rationing in law and medicine, health policy, FDA law and to medical tourism – the travel of patients who are residents of one country, the "home country," to another country, the "destination country," for medical treatment. His past work has included projects on end of life decision-making, FDA regulation and commodification.
He is the author of more than 70 articles and chapters and his award-winning work has appeared in leading legal (including the Stanford, Cornell, and Southern California Law Reviews), medical (including the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA), bioethics (including the American Journal of Bioethics, the Hastings Center Report) and public health (the American Journal of Public Health) journals, as well as Op-Eds in the New York Times and Washington Post. Cohen is the editor of The Globalization of Health Care: Legal and Ethical Issues (Oxford University Press, 2013, the introduction of which is available here), the co-editor of Human Subjects Research Regulation: Perspectives on the Future (MIT Press, 2014, co-edited with Holly Lynch, introduction available here), and the author of Patients with Passports: Medical Tourism, Law, and Ethics (Oxford University Press, 2014), with four other books in progress.
Prior to becoming a professor he served as a law clerk to Judge Michael Boudin of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and as a lawyer for U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division, Appellate Staff, where he handled litigation in the Courts of Appeals and (in conjunction with the Solicitor General’s Office) in the U.S. Supreme Court. In his spare time (where he can find any!) he still litigates, most recently having authored an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court for leading gene scientist Eric Lander in Association of Molecular Pathology v. Myriad, concerning whether human genes are patent eligible subject matter, a brief that was extensively discussed by the Justices at oral argument.
Cohen was selected as a Radcliffe Institute Fellow for the 2012-2013 year and by the Greenwall Foundation to receive a Faculty Scholar Award in Bioethics. He is currently one of the key co-investigators on a multi-million Football Players Health Study at Harvard which is committed to improving the health of NFL players. He leads the Ethics and Law initiative as part of the multi-million dollar NIH funded Harvard Catalyst | The Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center program. He is also one of three editors-in-chief of the Journal of Law and the Biosciences, a peer-reviewed journal published by Oxford University Press.
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