Professor Steven Dean Named Co-Director of Block Center for International Studies


Professor Steven Dean, an expert in international tax policy, has been named co-director of the Dennis J. Block Center for the Study of International Business Law, joining co- directors Professors Julian Arato and Robin Effron to lead one of the most active international law institutions in New York. Professor Roberta Karmel, who founded the center with Professor of Law Emeritus Arthur Pinto in 1987, has stepped down from a leadership role.

Dean has previously served as Vice Dean at Brooklyn Law School and, while a Visiting Professor of Law at NYU School of Law, as Faculty Director of its Graduate Tax Program. He is also host of the Tax Maven Podcast.

“Roberta and Arthur did an amazing job establishing the Block Center, and I am thrilled with the opportunity to build on their vision and passion,” said Dean. “With the enthusiastic support from my co-directors, Julian and Robin, I plan to bring more of a focus to the center on international tax policy and encourage a less Eurocentric approach to international business law.”

Dean’s work focuses on the causes and consequences of inequality both domestically and globally, with a particular focus on tax policy and the impact of race. He recently testified before members of the U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee on “Minding the Tax Gap: Improving Tax Administration for the 21st Century.” He is coauthor with Professor Dana Brakman Reiser of Social Enterprise Law: Trust, Public Benefit and Capital Markets (Oxford University Press 2017). Their forthcoming collaboration, For-Profit Philanthropy (Oxford University Press 2022), will trace the ways that players, practices, and norms native to the business world have migrated into philanthropy. His next book will expand on the themes of his recent article, Ten Truths About Tax Havens: Inclusion and the ‘Liberia’ Problem, 70 Emory Law Journal 1657, (2021) (with Attiya Waris).

The Block Center hosts a wide array of events for practitioners, scholars, and students, primarily geared toward giving students exposure to the field. Students are highly engaged in the broader international law community through the student-run international law society, the influential Brooklyn Journal of International Law, and numerous international moot court competitions. The International Business Law Fellowship provides students opportunities to develop specialized knowledge and contacts across a wide variety of fields—such as cross-border transactions, transnational litigation, and international economic law. Fellows attend the Block Center’s programs and take a wide assortment of courses in the international and business fields to provide the necessary background for successful practice.