The Jason Libou Online Writing Competition

March 9th, 2015


City Square invites current first year students to participate in the inaugural Jason Libou Online Writing Competition.

Wherever cities are advancing urban policy, the writers for City Square’s blog, Fountain, bring information to the attention of our readers in a constant stream of current events summaries and content. This competition aims to continue the mission of City Square by providing dynamic academic content and advancing the urban policy discussion.

The competition gives 1L students the opportunity to engage in urban policy issues and practice a legal writing format starkly different from the first year curriculum as well as demonstrate interest by contributing to the Fordham Urban Law Journal.

Up to 5 winning blog posts will be published on City Square.


Submissions must be sent by email attachment to by 11:59pm on March 29, 2015. Please direct any questions to that email address.

Each blog post must include 500-1,000 words and a byline with the student’s name.

Each submission must indicate which writing topic was chosen (see below).

All submissions must include a list of source URL addresses which link to the articles cited in the post. Each post must cite at least five independent sites for source material. Examples of sources include Atlantic Cities, Next City, Citiscope, Planetizen, City Journal, WebUrbanist, The Furman Center at NYU, PropertyProf Blog, and Law of the Land.

For blog post examples, please view


Competitors in this year’s competition may consider urban policies and issues in the following topics:

Urban Planning: Urban planning is the technical and political process concerned with the design and regulation of the urban environment, focusing on economic and social functions to improve the welfare of city dwellers through improved organization and environmental protection.  These efforts include the development of green spaces and the revitalization of existing buildings and infrastructure.

Education: Some people view education as right, not a luxury, in today’s world.  Though many will agree on the significance of education, there is much contention about its access and structure.  Acceptable topics include but are not limited to charter schools, student loan debt, affirmative action policies in college admissions, standardized testing, special education, and recent student efforts to form unions in college football.

Urban Criminal Justice: Cities face a myriad of criminal justice issues. Within the courts, an overwhelming volume of criminal cases place a stress on defendants, prosecutors, defenders, and the facilities that hold defendants in custody. Beyond the courts, municipal governments are struggling to implement policing strategies that are both effective in preventing crime and respectful of civil liberties.

Energy and Sustainability: Concerns about the social, environmental, and economic consequences of rapid population growth and consumption of our natural resources has increased attention to sustainability. Cities must address utility regulation, renewable electricity and fuels, energy efficiency, and policies to cap carbon emissions from power generation and vehicles in the context of sustainability.


PLEASE NOTE: Winning this competition does not guarantee a staff position on the Fordham Urban Law Journal but may factor into the offer decision as a demonstration of interest following the summer writing competition which involves all Fordham Law journals.

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