Shawn Boyne

Professor of Law
Co-Chair, Global Crisis Leadership Forum
Dean's Fellow, and DRIVE Fellow

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law
Lawrence W. Inlow Hall, Room 327
530 W. New York Street
Indianapolis, IN 46202-3225

Phone: (317) 278-4781

SSRN | Curriculum Vitae | Web Page


B.A. (cum laude), 1980,Cornell University
M.B.A, 1985, University of Minnesota
J.D., 1991, University of Southern California’s Gould School of Law
M.A., 2002, Ph.D., 2007, University of Wisconsin
LL.M., 2008, Justus-Liebig-Universität (Giessen, Germany)


Evidence, criminal law, criminal procedure, comparative national security law, cybercrime


Shawn Boyne joined the faculty in the summer of 2008 as associate professor of law, teaching evidence, criminal law, and criminal procedure. Prior to joining IU she was a DAAD Post-doctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute of Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg, Germany, as well as a graduate fellow with the Institute for Legal Studies at the University of Wisconsin Law School. She has also been a visiting fellow with the Berlin Program for Advanced German and European Studies.

Early in her career, Professor Boyne served as a senior trial prosecutor for the State of New Mexico, specializing in the prosecution of child sexual abuse and domestic violence cases. She worked for several years as a defense attorney and served on the boards of several non-profit organizations dedicated to protecting the rights of children. As a law student, she served on the staff of the Southern California Law Review and was the co-founder of the Southern California Review of Law and Women’s Studies. She received the Warren J. Ferguson Award for the best essay on social justice for her early research that examined the conditions of incarceration of HIV-positive women in the California prison system.

Professor Boyne’s research interests span the intersection of the fields of criminal law, politics, and culture. Her recent scholarship examines the meaning of prosecutorial "objectivity" in Germany's civil law system. In 2011, the American Society of Comparative Law selected the working draft of her article entitled, "The Many Faces of Objectivity: A Look at German Sexual Assault Cases, 67 Wash. & Lee. L.R. 1287 (2010) as one of six papers to be discussed at its annual works-in-progress workshop held at Yale Law School. Her 2012 article, “The Cultural Limits of Formalism and Uniformity” was selected through a blind review by the Young Comparativists Committee of the American Society of Comparative Law for its 2012 conference held at George Washington University. She has presented papers at the University of Virginia School of Law, Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, Washington & Lee Law School and also at conferences in the Austria, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

She recently published a comprehensive ethnographic study, The German Prosecution Service: Guardians of the Law? (Springer 2014).  The book explores the factors that shape prosecutorial discretion in Germany's civil law system and argues that organizational and political factors shape prosecutorial decision-making.  She also is one of the co-editors of the Comparative Law Professors Blog which tracks and highlights developments in the filed of comparative law.

In the classroom, Professor Boyne strives to introduce innovative teaching methods that hone students' leadership and advocacy skills. On biennial basis, students in her Comparative National Security Law Seminar join with students from IU's School of Public and Environmental Affairs to participate in a full-day counterterrorism simulation. The 2009 simulation was the basis for the documentary aired on public television entitled, "Tough Decisions: Defending the Homeland." The documentary won a regional Emmy award in 2011. Seeking to expand the law school's leadership training programs, Professor Boyne serves as the law school's chair of the newly created Global Crisis Leadership Forum. The forum aims to hone the crisis decision-making skills of students as well as the public and private sector communities.

In Spring 2010, Professor Boyne was awarded an IUPUI DRIVE (Developing Diverse Researchers with InVestigative Expertise) Fellowship. In 2012, she received a Trustee’s Teaching Award, an Alumni Association Teaching Grant, as well as a Prestigious External Award Recognition (PEAR Award). She is a two time recipient of a John S. Grimes Research Grant. She serves as a member of the American Association of Law School’s (AALS) Curriculum Committee and an member of the Society of American Law Teacher’s (SALT) LGBT Committee.



Books and Chapters

  • "Procedural Economy in Pre-Trial Procedures: A Comparison of the U.S. and Germany," in COMPARATIVE CRIMINAL PROCEDURE (eds. Ross & Thaman)(forthcoming Elgar Press 2015).
  • "Translating Civil Law 'Objectivity' with an Adversarial Brain: An Ethnographic Perspective" in THE ROLE OF TRANSLATION IN COMPARATIVE LAW(Routledge Press 2013).
  • "Is the Journey from the In-Box to the Out-Box a Straight Line? The Drive for Efficiency and the Prosecution of Low-Level Criminality in Germany," Book Chapter in The Prosecutor in Transnational Perspective, Oxford University Press, 2012. (Luna & Wade,eds.)
  • "Speech, Radicalisation, and Terror: Targeting an Uncertain Link," in STATE POWER & THE LEGAL REGULATION OF EVIL[ebook]Francesca Dominello (ed.)pp. 21-35(Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press, 2010).
  • The Criminalization of Speech in an Age of Terror: Casting a Wide Net for Evildoers, in RIGHTS, CITIZENSHIP AND TORTURE: PERSPECTIVES ON EVIL, LAW AND THE STATE (John Parry & Welat Zeydanlioglu eds.) Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press (2009)

Law Review and Journal Articles

  • "The Quest for Efficiency and the Erosion of Truth in Pre-Trial Procedures," Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal (forthcoming 2015).
  • *U.S.National Report on Whistleblowing for the XIX International Congress of Comparative Law, 62 American Journal of Comparative Law 425-455 (Summer 2014). International Academy of Comparative Law, 2014 Vienna Congress.
  • *"Crisis in the Classroom: Using Simulations to Enhance Critical Thinking Skills," 62 Journal of Legal Education,311-322(November 2012). Available online at:
  • *"The Cultural Limits on Uniformity and Formalism in the German Penal Code," Crime, Law, and Social Change, Volume 58, Issue 3 (2012), Page 251-293 (Draft available on SSRN).
  • Free Speech, Terrorism, and European Security: Defining and Defending the Political Community, 30 Pace Law Rev. 417 (Winter 2010).
  • The Many Faces of Objectivity: A Look at German Sexual Assault Cases, 67 Wash. & Lee. L.R. 1287 (2010)(paper selected for presentation at the 2011 American Society of Comparative Law Works-in-Progress Workshop, Yale University).
  • The Tension between Politics and Justice: German Courts and the 9/11 Suspect Cases, 14 Temp. Pol. & Civ. Rts. L. Rev. 543 (2005).
  • Law, Terrorism & Social Movements: How Politics has Shaped Germany's Anti-Terrorism Legislation, 12 Cardozo J. Int'l & Comp. L. 41 (Summer 2004).
  • The Future of Liberal Democracies in a Time of Terror, 11 Tulsa J. Comp & Int'l Law 111 (Fall 2003).
  • Death in the Desert: A New Look at the Involuntary Intoxication Defense, 32 N.M. L. Rev. 243 (co-authored with Gary C. Mitchell)(2002).

Essays and Reports

  • Preserving the Role of Law in a Time of Terror: Germany's Response to Terrorism, in LAW VS. WAR: COMPETING APPROACHES TO FIGHTING TERRORISM. U.S. Army Strategic Studies Inst. (eds., pp. 17-21 (2005).

Book Reviews

  • Review of EU PROCEDURAL RIGHTS IN CRIMINAL PROCEEDINGS,(T. Spronken, G. Vermeulen, D. de Vocht, and Lauren Van Puyenbrock, 2009). 12 J. Eur. L. Reform (2010)(Issue 3-4).
  • Review of INTERNATIONAL LAW AND THE RUSSIAN LEGAL SYSTEM by Boris Leonidovich Zimnenko, 18 Law & Politics Book Review 15 (2008).

Other Publications

  • "State Bar Needs to Speak Up on Marriage Equality," The Indiana Lawyer, December 4, 2013.
  • Editorial, Indianapolis Star. "Camm Trial Illustrates Problems in the American Justice System." October 26, 2013.
  • Editorial, "Pursuit of Convictions puts Justice in Jeopardy," Indianapolis Star, Monday, April 13, 2009.
  • Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Wisconsin: "Prosecutorial Discretion in Germany's Rechtsstaat: Varieties of Practice and the Pursuit of Truth." (2007)
  • "Beginnings," 1 S. Cal. Rev. L. & Women's Stud. 1 (1992).
  • Note, Women in Prison with AIDS: An Assault on the Constitution? 64 So.Cal. L.Rev. 741 (1991).
  • "Behind Walls of Fear and Ignorance: Women in Prison with AIDS face a system infected with hostility," THE WOMEN'S QUARTERLY. (Winter 1990)

Work in Progress

  • Paper Tigers?: The Role of the Defense in Inquisitorial Systems


  • "Challenges Facing the U.S. Criminal Justice System," Shanghai University of Political Science and Law, Shanghai, China, October 8, 2014.
  • "Combatting Global Corruption: The Need for Collective Action," International Conference on Economic Crimes, Shandong University of Political Science and Law, Jinan, China, October 11, 2014
  • "Evidentiary Issues and Digital Evidence," Symposium of the Theory & Practice of Evidence Identification, Shandong University of Political Science and Law, Jinan, China. October 12, 2014.
  • "The U.S. Death Penalty in Decline," China University of Political Science & Law, Beijing, China. October 13, 2014.
  • "Procedural Economy in Pre-Trial Procedure: Developments in Germany and the United States," University of Illinois College of Law, September 11, 2014.
  • "The German Prosecution Service: Guardians of the Law," Das Franz-von-Liszt- Institut fuer internationales Recht und Rechtsvergleichung, Justus-Liebig-Universitaet, July 10, 2014.
  • "A View from Abroad: Comparing the U.S. and German Criminal Justice Systems July 15, 2014. Leibniz Universitaet Hannover, Germany.
  • "Law, Change, and Organizational Theory," Annual Conference of Juris Diversitas, Aix en Provence, France. July 18, 2014.
  • Presentation of the U.S. Report on Whistleblowing at the XIX International Congress of Comparative Law in Vienna, Austria. July 22, 2014.
  • "Disaster in the Classroom: Using Simulations to Teach National Security Law," Igniting Law Teaching: a TEDx-Styled Conference@American University Washington College of Law. April 4, 2014.
  • “An Overview of U.S. Whistle-blowing Law,” Robert H. McKinney Faculty Colloquium, January 21, 2014.
  • Speaker, “The Implications of the David Camm Trial for the American Justice System,” Greenwood, Indiana Rotary Club, January 13, 2014.
  • “Looking Back: Major Cases from the United States Supreme Court in 2013,” IU McKinney School of Law Professors’ Panel with Shawn Boyne, Jennifer Drobac, George Edwards, David Orentlicher, and Michael Pitts. September 24, 2013.
  • "The Problem of Translation in Comparative Law," Junior Faculty Talk, Case Western Reserve Law School, January 23, 2013.
  • "Translating Civil Law Objectivity with an Adversarial Brain," Interdisciplinary Conference entitled: Comparative Law: Engaging Translation. Kent Law School, Canterbury, Kent on June 20th-21st, 2012.
  • "Translating Civil Law Objectivity with an Adversarial Brain," Washington University Junior Faculty Workshop, May 11, 2012.
  • First Annual Junior Faculty Workshop, March 23-24th, 2012. "Objectivity in the Law." Robert H. McKinney School of Law.
  • "The Cultural Limits on Uniformity and Formalism in the German Penal Code," St. Louis University School of Law, November 2, 2011.
  • "American Civil Liberties and the War on Terrorism," Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. Bloomington, IN. November 14, 2011.
  • Sixth Annual Comparative Law Works in Progress Workshop, Yale Law School, February 12th-13th, 2011.
  • "Fighting Right-Wing Extremism in the United States," Invited Presentation to Visiting Delegation from Germany, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State's International Visitor Leadership Program," January 28, 2011.
  • "Why Teach About Hate Crimes in Criminal Law,” IUPUI Multi-Cultural Teaching & Learning Institute: Culturally Sensitive Pedagogy, November 10, 2010.
  • "Law in Action: Training Law Students Using a Counter-Terrorism Simulation," Max-Planck-Institut für ausländisches und internationales Strafrecht, Freiburg, Germany. October 28, 2010.
  • "Measuring" Prosecutorial Objectivity in German Rape Cases: Roundtable Presentation. Research Talk Qualitative & Mixed Methods Summer Research Intensive. June 25, 2010.
  • Presenter and Participant, Washington University School of Law Regional Junior Faculty Workshop, May 7, 2010.
  • "The Many Faces of Prosecutorial Objectivity," April 1-2nd, 2010. Washington & Lee Law School. Prosecutorial Power: A Transnational Workshop.
  • "The Impact of Relational Dynamics on Prosecutorial Objectivity in Germany," Indiana University Workshop in Political Theory & Public Policy," October 5th, 2009.
  • "The Many Faces of Objectivity: The Role of the Prosecutor in German Rape Prosecutions," Big Ten Aspiring Scholars Conference, University of Illinois College of Law, August 2-4, 2009.
  • "Revisiting Damaska: German Prosecutorial Decision-Making and the Search for Truth." Law & Society Association's Annual Conference, May 28, 2009, Denver, Colorado.
  • "Reevaluating the German Model of the Prosecution Function." Association for the Study of Law, Culture, and the Humanities Annual Conference, April 4, 2009. Boston, MA.
  • "Prosecutorial Decision-making in the German Rechtstaat." Toledo Law School Junior Faculty Exchange Colloquim, February 12, 2009.
  • "From Coffee to Culture: Conducting Qualitative Research Abroad," Midwest Law & Society Retreat, University of Wisconsin Law School, Sept. 19th & 20th, 2008.
  • "Revisiting Damaska: Prosecutorial Discretion in Germany," Untenured Academics Conference, Indiana Univerity-Bloomington, August 5th & 6th, 2008.
  • The Criminalization of Speech in the Age of Terror, 2nd Global Conference: Evil, Law and the State-Issues in State Power and Violence. March 7th-9th, Salzburg, Austria.
  • A Comparative Construction of Prosecutorial Discretion, Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law, Freiburg, Germany. November 28, 2007.
  • A Rose by Any Other Name: Torture as a Tactic in the War on Terror, Panel Participant, Midwest Political Science Association Conference, Chicago, Illinois, April 12-15th, 2007.
  • The Organizational Culture of German Prosecution, Southern Political Science Association, January 4-7, 2007.
  • Verfahrensabsprachen und Verteidigungsstrategien-Einblicke in das US-amerikanische Strafverfahrenssystem, Giessener Kriminologisches Praktikerseminar, Institut fuer Kriminologie an der Justus-Liebig-Universitaet, Giessen, Germany. June 6, 2006.
  • Negotiating Uncertainty: The German Hauptverhandlung as an Unstable Event, International Workshop: Event and Process in Organized Discourse, Freie Universitaet-Berlin, March 10-11th, 2006.
  • Preserving the Rule of Law in a Time of Terror: The German Debate on Terror, J.B. Moore Society University of Virginia School of Law, 2005 Symposium, "Beyond U.S. Terrorism: Comparing Domestic Legal Remedies to an International Dilemma," Co-sponsored by the U.S. Army War College's Strategic Studies Institute. February 24-25th, 2005.
  • The Tension Between Politics and Justice: German Courts and the 9/11 Suspect Cases, Temple Law Schools' Political and Civil Rights Law Review Symposium: "Balancing Security and Liberty in the New Century," October 25, 2004.

Other Activities

  • Co-Chair, The American Society of Comparative Law's 2nd Annual Young Comparativists Conference, April 18-19th, 2013.
  • Federalist Society Debate with Professor Robert Turner (University of Virginia),"The Causes of 9/11." March 29, 2012.
  • 2nd Counterterrorism Simulation and Workshop, IU School of Law-Indianapolis, October 27th-28th, 2011. Co-sponsored by the Indiana University School of Environmental and Public Affairs.