Adeladie Law School would like to congratulate Associate Professor Dale Stephens being awarded his Doctor of Juridical Science Degree (SJD) by Harvard Law School. The SJD is Harvard’s most advanced law degree and has been offered as part of the Law program for over 100 years. His dissertation topic was ‘Lawfare or Law Fair? The Role of Law in Military Decision Making’ and dealt with the issue of law’s hegemony within the battlespace and the correlative issues of restraint, authenticity and professional responsibility under that law. Modern warfare is a highly complex and stratified undertaking and there is a clinical feel to the dense regulation of conflict that is professionally navigated by lawyer and operator alike. Languages of strategy, politics and ethics all fuse in moments of legal decision, though there is frequently a normative distance maintained to allow for a sense of external validation for the choices thus made. Dr Stephens project principally examined the modalities of reasoning undertaken and location of moral jeopardy for the choices made under the law in armed conflict. The degree was conferred at the 363rd Harvard University Graduation Ceremony on May 29, 2014. Honorary degrees at the Graduation ceremony were also conferred on (former) President H.W. Bush (senior), Chilean author Isabel Allende, former NY Mayor Michael Bloomberg and ‘the Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin.
Adelaide Law School