MacArthur Fellows Program

Pamela Samuelson

Legal Scholar | Class of 1997

Legal Scholar
Ithaca, New York
49 at time of award
Published July 1, 1997

About Pamela's Work

Pamela Samuelson is a legal scholar known for her work in intellectual property law and telecommunications.

She is dedicated to the creation of an intellectual property rights framework that promotes the widespread availability of information and knowledge, while allowing for maximal free expression and inquiry in the digital era.  A major theme of Samuelson’s work is how commercial laws can insure the free flow of information.  An expert legal theorist, she also consistently engages information technology and telecommunication policy communities.  In 1995, she was instrumental in organizing the Digital Future Coalition, a broad-based alliance advocating for a balanced approach to intellectual property in cyberspace.  Further, she is committed to working against restrictive, intellectual property rights policies in important arenas such as scientific data and research.


Samuelson is the Chancellor’s Professor of Information Management and of Law at the University of California, Berkeley.  She is also co-director of the Berkeley Center for Law and Technology and an advisor at the Samuelson Law, Technology, and Public Policy Clinic.  She was a professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law from 1981-1996.

Samuelson received a B.A. (1971) and M.A. (1972) from the University of Hawaii, Honolulu, and a J.D. (1976) from the Yale University Law School.

Recent News

In 2014, Pamela Samuelson co-founded the Authors Alliance, and she currently serves as chair of the Board of Directors. The Authors Alliance is a nonprofit organization representing the interests of authors who want to be widely read.

Updated July 2015

Select News Coverage of Pamela Samuelson
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