Sarah Lawsky Named an INRIA International Chair, 2024-2028


Faculty Global Technology

Sarah Lawsky, Stanford Clinton Sr. and Zylpha Kilbride Clinton Research Professor of Law at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, has been named an international chair by a French national research institute.

The French National Institute for Research in Digital Science and Technology (Inria) facilitates world-class research and innovation through its multidisciplinary programs, allowing researchers to collaborate with industrial partners as well as fellow academics around the world.  

“Many congratulations to Professor Sarah Lawsky for the well-deserved honor of being appointed an International Chair at Inria,” said Dean Hari Osofsky. “Her cutting-edge interdisciplinary scholarship makes such an impact, and I am excited for what she and her Inria partners will develop through their continued highly innovative collaborative work on Catala. We are very grateful for Professor Lawsky’s brilliant scholarly contributions and leadership.”   

The International Chair program was designed to support scientists for extended stays with Inria’s research teams in France. From 2024 to 2028, Lawsky will spend several months of each year in Paris, France, to continue work on Catala, a programming language she is helping develop as part of a team led by Denis Merigoux, a French computer scientist based at Inria. Catala is a tractable and functional approach to coding tax law that offers a more transparent formalization and can potentially hold the government more accountable than the current patchwork of forms and worksheets.

“I am profoundly grateful to Inria for this opportunity and look forward to continue developing Catala with Dr. Merigoux’s fantastic team,” said Lawsky.

At Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, Lawsky teaches federal income tax, partnership tax, and tax policy. Her research focuses on tax law and on the application of formal logic and artificial intelligence to the law. She has assumed several leadership roles within Northwestern Pritzker Law, most recently as Vice Dean of the Law School. Prior to joining Northwestern Pritzker Law in 2016, Lawsky taught at UC Irvine School of Law and George Washington University Law School, and as an adjunct in NYU’s tax LL.M. program. Before beginning her teaching career, she practiced tax law in New York.

Lawsky received her B.A. from the University of Chicago, her J.D. from Yale Law School, her LL.M. in tax from NYU School of Law, and her Ph.D. in philosophy from the UC Irvine Department of Logic and Philosophy of Science.

Read more about Sarah Lawsky’s work on Catala.