People at ILR

Ifeoma Ajunwa
people / faculty

Ifeoma Ajunwa

Assistant Professor
Labor Relations, Law, and History

Overview

Professor Ajunwa is an Assistant Professor of Labor & Employment Law in the Labor Relations, Law, and History Department of Cornell’s Industrial and Labor Relations School. She is also an Associate Faculty Member at Cornell Law School and a Faculty Associate at the Berkman Klein Center at Harvard University. Her research focus is on law and technology in the workplace. Her research interests are at the intersection of law and technology with a particular focus on the ethical governance of workplace technologies. Her research also concerns diversity and inclusion in the labor market and the workplace. Professor Ajunwa is the winner of the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) Derrick Bell Award for 2018.

Dr. Ajunwa’s articles have been published or are forthcoming in both top law review and peer review publications including the Fordham Law Review, the California Law Review, the Northwestern Law Review, the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, The Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law, the Journal of Law, Medicine, and Ethics, and in Research in the Sociology of Work, among others. Dr. Ajunwa has been invited to present her work before governmental agencies such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (the CFPB), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (the EEOC), as well as, many national and international conferences. Dr. Ajunwa’s law review paper, Limitless Worker Surveillance, (with Kate Crawford and Jason Schultz) has been downloaded more than 2,700 times on SSRN and was endorsed by the NY Times Editorial Board.
Dr. Ajunwa’s forthcoming book, “The Quantified Worker,” which examines the role of technology in the workplace and its effects on management practices as moderated by employment and anti-discrimination laws will be published by Cambridge University Press in 2019.
Research Interests:
- Law and Technology
- Technology and Society
- Employment and Labor Law
- Anti-Discrimination Law
- Diversity and Inclusion

Teaching Statement

Professor Ajunwa teaches all levels of students: undergraduate students, professional, and graduate students.

My teaching philosophy is to meet the students where they are. I believe in developing diverse pedagogical approaches that address the divergent learning styles of any class population. Thus, in addition to employing a modified Socratic method, I also engage the students with real-life examples and scenarios via hypotheticals and media. I also teach with business school-style cases (some of which are my original creations) which allows the students to put theory into practice. I believe in a classroom in which the professor is a guide rather than dictator, and in which learning is better accomplished with a shared sense of humor and collaboration/cooperation between students. I also believe in innovative teaching designs, for example, for my undergraduate course on technology in the workplace, I designed a syllabus in which the fiction book, “Player Piano” served as an illustrative companion to the academic texts such as law review articles and management papers that students read as part of the course. Also, in the design of my courses, I always strive to encourage a fair amount of writing by the students, particularly in the form of weekly memos that allow the students to reflect on the papers they have read and to attempt to synthesize the knowledge they have gained from various sources.

Roster of course taught at Cornell:
- Labor and Employment Law
- Technology, Management, and the Law
- Ethics and Technology
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Course previously taught at other law schools:
- Contracts
- Intellectual Property Law
- Health Law
- Negotiations
- Mass Incarceration Seminar

Research Statement

As a legal scholar, I am interested in how the law might be employed or improved to address new social developments, particularly those arising from technological advancements. Thus, my law scholarship is at the intersection of Law and Technology, Health Law, Privacy Law, Business Law, Anti-discrimination law and ethics.

As a sociologist, I am interested in how organizations/institutions cope with new social phenomena. Thus, my work is at the intersection of Organizational Theory, Critical Legal Theory, Critical Management Theory, Sociology of Work/Organizations, and Science and Technology Studies. In the context of the workplace, I am interested in how the law deals with the social phenomenon of emerging technologies.

Service Statement

Cornell Service
- Professor Ajunwa was appointed a Keeton House Fellow for 2018-2019.
- Professor Ajunwa also serves on the advisory board of the Cornell Prison Education Program (CPEP).

Outside Service:
Professor Ajunwa serves on the editorial board of Research in the Sociology of Work. She is also a regular reviewer for the Academy of Management Conference.

Publications

Journal Articles

  • Ifeoma Ajunwa. . Algorithms at Work: Productivity Monitoring Platforms and Wearable Technology as the New Data-Centric Research Agenda for Employment and Labor Law, St. Louis Law Journal .
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa, Angela Onwuachi-Willig. . Combating Discrimination Against the Formerly Incarcerated in the Labor Market, Northwestern Law Review .
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa. . Age Discrimination by Platforms, Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law .
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa, Dan Greene. . Platforms at Work: Data Intermediaries in the Organization of the Workplace, Research in the Sociology of Work .
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa, Kate Crawford, Jason Schultz. 2017. Limitless Worker Surveillance, California Law Review .
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa. . Genetic Data and Civil Rights, Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review . 51
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa. 2016. Health and Big Data: An Ethical Framework for Health Information Collection by Corporate Wellness Programs, Journal of Law, Medicine, and Ethics .
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa. 2015. The Modern Day Scarlet Letter, Fordham Law Review . 83
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa. 2014. Bad Barrels: An Organizational-Based Analysis of Human Rights Abuses Within the American Carceral System, University of Pennsylvannia Journal of Law and Social Change .
  • Ifeoma Ajunwa. 2014. Genetic Testing Meets Big Data: Torts and Contract Law Issues, .

Honors and Awards

  • Fellow, ISS Collaborative Team Project, Institute for Social Sciences (ISS) at Cornell University. 2021
  • Derrick Bell Award, American Association of Law Schools (AALS). 2018

Contact

Ives Hall Faculty Wing, Room 396