A Scholarly Selection

Tuan Samahon

At the core of a great law school is an outstanding faculty. The professors at Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law are some of the most innovative minds in legal education, and distinguished leaders in the community consistently seek their expertise. One such faculty member, Tuan Samahon, was recently selected by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board to serve as a Fulbright scholar with the law faculty at the University of Zagreb in Croatia.

Selected for the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program, Samahon will teach a seminar on comparative approaches to public administrative law, with an emphasis on transparency, in spring 2017.

"I am delighted to teach this course to students at Croatia's flagship university, the University of Zagreb," said Samahon. The University of Zagreb participates in the European Union's ERASMUS exchange program, which means Samahon will teach both Croatian and other European students.

Samahon’s faculty host, Anamarija Musa, serves as Croatia’s first Information Commissioner and is responsible for monitoring, promoting and securing governmental compliance with Croatian constitutional and statutory rights to access government information—an area of particular interest to Samahon. Samahon teaches and writes in the area of the separation of powers and governmental accountability. He has testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee and has served as counsel in Freedom of Information Act and separation-of-powers litigation in federal trial and appellate courts.

"The comparative opportunity to study transparency law in Croatia offers a rich study in contrasts. The United States has had 50 years of experience with our country's Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year (1966-2016),” said Samahon. “Its strengths and weaknesses are known.”

“By contrast, the Croatian access to information law is comparatively young. This relatively new law benefited from other countries' experiences with transparency and regulatory advances. Croatia, however, does not yet have the same on-the-ground experience with implementing and complying with a transparency regime."

Recipients of Fulbright awards are selected on the basis of academic and professional achievement as well as a record of service and demonstrated leadership in their respective fields. Samahon is one of several Villanova Law faculty who have been chosen as Fulbright scholars or served the organization in other capacities.

  • Mark C. Alexander, Arthur J. Kania Dean, was a Fulbright Scholar at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid during the 2003-2004 academic year. He was also appointed by President Barack Obama to serve on the Fulbright Scholarship Board—the 12-member entity that selects students, scholars, teachers and others from the United States and abroad to participate in Fulbright exchanges.
  • Steven L. Chanenson was a Fulbright Distinguished Lecturer in Law during the 2008-2009 academic year, teaching American law at Xiamen University School of Law in Xiamen, Fujian Province, People’s Republic of China.
  • Michele Pistone was Fulbright Scholar at the University of Malta in spring 2006.
  • Diane Penneys Edelman was a Fulbright Specialist at European Humanities University in Vilnius, Lithuania in October 2009 and April 2010. She was also a Faculty Advisor for a Fulbright Scholar from Belarus in fall 2002.

Click here to read more about Villanova Law’s distinguished faculty.