• Alec D. Walen
  • Alec D. Walen
  • Professor of Philosophy and Law
  • Areas of Specialization: Criminal Law, Counterterrorism Law, National Security Law, Constitutional Law Moral Philosophy Jurisprudence
  • Office: Lucy Stone Hall
  • Campus: Livingston Campus
  • Office Hours: By Appointment Only
  • Education: Ph.D. University of Pittsburgh (Philosophy), J.D. Harvard Law School


Dr. Alec Walen is a Distinguished Professor at Rutgers University, jointly appointed in the School of Law (Camden), the Department of Philosophy (New Brunswick), and the Program in Criminal Justice (New Brunswick). He earned his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1998 and his Ph.D. in Philosophy from University of Pittsburgh in 1993. He has recently taught courses in criminal law and moral philosophy. Prior to joining the faculty at Rutgers, Walen was a research scholar at the Institute for Philosophy and Public Policy at the University of Maryland. He has also taught at the University of Heidelberg in Germany, Aachen University in Germany, the University of Baltimore, Harvard University, and Lafayette College.

Walen’s academic work has ranged over topics in moral philosophy, constitutional law, national security law, and criminal law. He has published in a number of journals, including: the Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, Criminal Law and Philosophy, Law and Philosophy, Ethics, Philosophy and Public Affairs, the Journal of Value Inquiry, the International Journal of Constitutional Law, Constitutional Commentary, Philosophy and Public Policy Quarterly, and many law reviews. He has published The Mechanics of Claims and Permissible Killing in War (Oxford University Press, 2019) and is working on a second book: Punishment, Penalty, and Prevention in a Liberal State. Two recent articles of interest to criminal justice students are: (1) “On Blame and Punishment: Self-Blame, Other-Blame, and Normative Negligence,” Law and Philosophy 41 (2022): 283-304 (https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3681644); and “Criminal Law and Penal Law: The Wrongness Constraint and a Complementary Forfeiture Model,” Criminal Law and Philosophy 14 (2020): 431-446 (https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3449533).