Faculty & Staff
Professor Intisar A. Rabb is a Professor of Law, Professor of History, and the Faculty Director of the Program in Islamic Law at Harvard Law School. She has held appointments as a Susan S. and Kenneth L. Wallach Professor at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, as an Associate Professor at NYU Department of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies and at NYU Law School, and as an Assistant Professor at Boston College Law School. She previously served as a law clerk for Judge Thomas L. Ambro of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, as a Temple Bar Fellow in London with the American Inns of Court, and as a Carnegie Scholar for her work on contemporary Islamic law.
In 2015, in partnership with the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, support from the Luce and MacArthur Foundations, and collaborations with myriad scholars and institutions, she launched SHARIAsource – an online portal designed to provide universal access to the world’s information on Islamic law and history, and to facilitate new research with the use of AI tools.
She has published on Islamic law in historical and modern contexts, including the monograph, Doubt in Islamic Law (Cambridge University Press 2015), the edited volumes, Justice and Leadership in Early Islamic Courts (with Abigail Balbale, Harvard University Press, 2017) and Law and Tradition in Classical Islamic Thought (with Michael Cook et al., Palgrave 2013), and numerous articles on Islamic constitutionalism, on Islamic legal canons, and on the early history of the Qur'an text.
She received a BA from Georgetown University, a JD from Yale Law School, and an MA and PhD from Princeton University. She has conducted research in Egypt, Iran, Syria, and elsewhere.
Nataly Castro is the Program Coordinator for the Program in Islamic Law.
Kamil is a software developer at End Point who developed SHARIAsource's Arabic OCR platform alongside improving the SHARIAsource Portal. He specializes in Ruby on Rails development, including Spree e-commerce sites, as well as front-end development using various tools and libraries.
Kamil has worked with MongoDB, CouchDB, MySQL, and PostgreSQL. He is also proficient with C#/.NET, Objective-C, and Haskell.
He is an author of Open Source projects: an Elixir-based mailing library, and a Ruby-based email address validator.
Kamil strongly believes in the philosophy of “constant never-ending improvement”, and is excited by the challenge of delivering greater and greater value in long-term relationships with his clients.
Sebastian Diaz is the Berkman Klein Center's Directory of Technology and he coordinates and advises the Program in Islamic Law on its digital projects. He guides the Berkman Klein Center's IT enterprise through a landscape of ever-changing technology and priorities. Sebastian manages its technology group, which consists of a Harvard renowned development team, an infrastructure and workplace computing team, and a technical project management team.
Gayle Fischer joined the Harvard Law School Library in 2016 as the Librarian for Islamic Law. She is primarily responsible for the selection, cataloging, and management of materials for the Islamic and Middle Eastern law collections, in addition to providing reference and instruction services. As a member of the Middle East Librarians Association, she serves on the Web and Social Media Committee and the Metrics Working Group. She obtained her B.A. in Philosophy and Arabic Language and Literature from Portland State University and holds an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies and an M.S.I.S. from the University of Texas at Austin. Her professional and research interests include digital scholarship/digital humanities, ontology(-ies), and Arabic poetry.
Jessica Fjeld is a Clinical Instructor at Harvard Law School’s Cyberlaw Clinic and serves as the Clinic’s Assistant Director. She is also a Lecturer on Law at HLS. She works in diverse areas including intellectual property, media and entertainment (particularly public media), freedom of expression, and law and policy relating to government and nonprofit entities. She works with SHARIAsource on copyright law and matters of intellectual property and technology.
She received a JD from Columbia Law School, where she was a James Kent Scholar and Managing Editor of the Journal of Law and the Arts; an MFA in Poetry from the University of Massachusetts; and a BA from Columbia University.
Elizabeth Hess is the Executive Director of the Institute for Quantitative Social Science (IQSS). In partnership with the IQSS Faculty Director, Gary King, she is responsible for overall strategic, programmatic, and financial management of IQSS, working across the organization to ensure delivery of first-class research and administrative infrastructure to support its constituents. In addition, she oversees programmatic activities including software development projects, cloud computing resources, internal and external collaborations, and new program development.
Elizabeth graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and earned a masters degree from Harvard’s Graduate School of Education. She is actively pursuing a Sustainability Degree from Harvard University’s Extension School.
Jocelyn Kennedy is the Executive Director of the Harvard Law School Library where she oversees the day to day operations of the law library. An expert in legal research, she is interested in the impact the evolution of search platforms has on the habits of legal researchers. She is also researching the disparity in promotion trajectory between men and women in the field of librarianship, a workforce dominated by females. Prior to joining the Harvard Law School Library, Kennedy served as the Library Director at the University of Connecticut School of Law, and was the faculty research librarian at the University of Michigan. Prior to her career in librarianship, she served as a congressional staff and was a law clerk for the New Hampshire Superior Court. She has a JD from the University of New Hampshire and an MLIS from the University of Washington.