Rafael Cox Alomar
(202) 274-5303

Rafael Cox Alomar
Professor of Law
Visiting Professor of Law, Harvard Law School (Winter 2022)
Visiting Professor of Law, Georgetown Law Center (Summer 2019)

Harvard Law School
Juris Doctor, 2004

University of Oxford, Trinity College
Doctor of Philosophy, 2001
Marshall Scholar, 1997

Cornell University, College of Arts and Sciences
Bachelor of Arts, 1997, magna cum laude and with distinction in all subjects

Courses Taught
Remedies, Constitutional Law I, Constitutional Law II, Public International Law, Conflict of Laws

Legal Practice
Professor Cox Alomar is admitted to the practice of law in the District of Columbia, the State of New York and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Prior to joining the law faculty, Professor Cox Alomar practiced law in some of the most prestigious international law firms in Washington, D.C., acting on behalf of clients on a wide array of dispute resolution and transactional matters. More specifically, he has acted as counsel on eight international arbitrations before the World Bank’s International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) representing, among others, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, the Republic of Chile, the Republic of the Philippines and Électricité de France.

Scholarly Agenda
Professor Cox Alomar’s scholarly interests range widely, from the constitutional aspects of decolonization in the peripheral jurisdictions of the British, French and Dutch Empires in the postwar period, to the juridical penumbras of bilateral investment treaty interpretation within the framework of investor-state international arbitration.

Books | Articles | Book Chapters

  1. Oxford U.P. The Puerto Rico Constitution, 2022.
  2. Nomos, S.A. Las Constituciones de Puerto Rico, 2022.
  3. Ediciones Callejón En La Encrucijada: Pensamientos y Reflexiones, 2015.
  4. Ian Randle Publishers, Revisiting the Transatlantic Triangle: The Constitutional Decolonization of the Eastern Caribbean, 2009.
  5. The Puerto Rico Constitution at 70: A Failed Experiment at American Federalism? 57 New. Eng. L. Rev. F., no. 1 (2022) (forthcoming).
  6. Why Stare Decisis is Not an Obstacle to Overruling the Insular Cases (with Adriel Cepeda Derieux), 53 Colum. Hum. Rts. L. Rev., no. 3 (2022).
  7. Parliamentary Representation of Overseas Territories in the Metropolis: A Comparative Analysis, (with Peter Clegg, Marie Stæhr Harder & Elisabeth Nauclér) 60 Commonwealth & Comparative Politics, no. 3 (2022).
  8. El reconocimiento y la ejecución de laudos arbitrales foráneos en Puerto Rico, 43 Spain Arb. Rev., no. 1 (2022).
  9. Puerto Rico: The Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, 13 World Arb. & Med. Rev., no. 4 (2019).
  10. Identités, relations internationales et géopolitique de la Caraïbe: les acteurs territoriaux des Etats-Unis et de l’Union Européenne: ¿une étude en contrastes? Études caribéennes (Avril 2019).
  11. La problemática de la cláusula sombrilla en los Acuerdos Cubanos de Promoción y Protección Recíproca de Inversiones, 33 ICSID Review – Foreign Investment Law Journal, no. 3 (2018).
  12. Cuba’s Constitutional Moment, 23 Texas Hisp. J. L. & Pol’y (2017).
  13. Investment Treaty Arbitration in Cuba, 48 U. Miami Inter-Am. L. Rev. 1 (2017).
  14. The Reparation Question in the Context of Unlawful Expropriations, 3 Journal of Damages in Int’l. Arb., no. 1 (2016).
  15. La Nación en la encrucijada, 84 Rev. Jur. U.P.R. (2015).
  16. Estudio jurídico-normativo sobre la reconstitución del sistema de justicia juvenil de Puerto Rico, 49 Rev. Jur. Univ. Inter. (2015).
  17. The Ideological Decolonization of Puerto Rico’s Autonomist Movement, in Reconsidering the Insular Cases: The Past and Future of the American Empire (Gerald L. Neuman and Tomiko Brown-Nagin eds.), Harvard U.P. (2015).
  18. The Reparation Question in the Context of Unlawful Expropriations, in Investor Treaty Arbitration and Natural Resources, Juris (2015).

Amici Briefs

Fitisemanu v. United States, et. al. (U.S. Supreme Court)
Fitisemanu v. United States, et. al. (US Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit, May 12, 2020)
Fitisemanu v. United States, et. al. (US District Court for Utah District, Apr. 9, 2018)
Financial Oversight and Management Board v. Aurelius (U.S. Supreme Court)

January 4 – 19, 2022 Harvard Law School, taught course entitled “American Constitutionalism and the Insular Cases.”

Academic Presentations

September 21, 2022 Yale Law School, Vestiges of Colonialism: Puerto Rico and Sovereignty (Latin American Legal Studies)
September 15, 2022 University of Puerto Rico Law School, International Arbitration Seminar

June 4, 2022 American Association of Law Schools (Conference for New Law Teachers)
November 19, 2021 Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce for Southern Florida (Puerto Rico Status Bill)
November 13, 2021 George Washington University Law School, Constitutional Law Colloquium
November 8, 2021 Cornell University, Legal Anthropology Seminar
November 2, 2021 George Washington University Law School, Investor State Arbitration (The role of the arbitrator)
October 27, 2021 University of Puerto Rico (Puerto Rico Status Bill)
June 16, 2021 U.S. House of Representatives (Committee on Natural Resources) (offered oral testimony on Puerto Rico’s Status Bills)
May 4, 2021, Guam House of Representatives, (offered testimony at public hearing on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Insular Cases)
February 25, 2021, George Washington Law School (Trends in Investment-Arbitration in Latin America)
January 14, 2021, American Constitution Society (D.C. Chapter) (Sovereignty and Status Series: Puerto Rico 2020 Statehood Referendum)
December 16, 2020, New York City Bar (Decolonizing Justice: The Right to Self-Determination in Puerto Rico)
September 25, 2020, U.S. House of Representatives (Committee on Natural Resources) (offered written testimony on the Puerto Rico 2020 Statehood Referendum)
February 29, 2020, Princeton University (Climate Change and Colonialism)
September 20, 2019, Hunter College (CUNY) (Puerto Rico’s Constitutional Status)
May 6, 2019, Università di Firenze, Italy (American Conflict of Laws)
February 26, 2019, George Washington Law School (International Law and Self-Determination)
January 25, 2019, Unión Nacional de Juristas, Cuba (American Conflict of Laws)
December 6, 2018 Universidad del Este, Puerto Rico (The Unincorporated Territories of the Unites States)
November 9, 2018 Université de Bordeaux, France (The Legal Decolonization of Subaltern Peripheries)
October 23, 2018 U.S. Congress (The Contributions of Chancellor Jaime Benítez)
October 18-19, 2018 University of Cartagena, Colombia (Investment Treaty Arbitration)
September 19, 2018 George Washington Law School (What Kavanaugh Means for Civil Rights)
July 12, 2018 Casa de América, Madrid (Puerto Rico’s Constitutional Crisis)
April 13, 2018 Rutgers Law School (The Crisis in Puerto Rico: Citizenship)
February 26, 2018 Georgetown University Law Center (Third Party Funding in International Arbitration)
February 21, 2018 David A Clarke School of Law (UDC) (A Conversation with ICSID’s Under Secretary General)
December 4, 2017 Tulane University Law School (Cuban Constitutionalism in Comparative Context)
November 14, 2017 American University Law School (International Arbitration in the Americas)
November 9, 2017 David A Clarke School of Law (Cuba, Race and Culture)
October 27, 2017 Harvard Law School (An Unsettled Century of U.S. – Puerto Rico Relations)
October 20, 2017 Princeton University (Bankruptcy and Citizenship: Puerto Rico a 21st Century Colony?)
Sept. 29, 2017 Cornell Law School, Ithaca NY (Cuba’s Constitutional Moment)
August 23, 2017 University of Cartagena, Colombia (Comparative Constitutional Law)
June 1, 2017 Institut des Amériques (Paris) (U.S. and E.U. Territories: A Study in Contrasts)
May 12, 2017 Hunter College (CUNY) (Puerto Rico’s Status and Plebiscite)
April 26, 2017 ABA Section of International Law (Puerto Rico’s Status under International Law)
April 6, 2017 National Council of La Raza (100th Anniversary of the Jones Act)
March 3, 2017 Harvard Law School (Cuba’s and Puerto Rico’s Constitutional Moment)
January 30, 2017 Columbia Law School (Cuba’s New Foreign Investment Law)
October 18, 2016 University of Havana (Investment Treaty Arbitration in Cuba)
August 1, 2015 Southeastern Association of Law Schools Annual Conference
February 26, 2015 Juris’ Ninth Annual Investment Treaty Arbitration Conference
September 12, 2014 Cornell University, Latin American Studies Program
February 19, 2014 Harvard Law School

Links to Academic Presentations:

Revoking the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decisions in the 1901 Insular Cases
Guam House of Representatives
May 4, 2021

Trends in Investment-Arbitration in Latin America
George Washington University Law School
February 25, 2021

Sovereignty and Status Series: Puerto Rico 2020 Statehood Referendum
American Constitution Society (D.C. Chapter)
January 14, 2021

Decolonizing Justice: The Right to Self-Determination in Puerto Rico
New York City Bar
December 16, 2020

Puerto Rico’s Options for a Non-Territory Status
U.S. House of Representatives (Committee on Natural Resources)
September 25, 2020 (Written Testimony)

Climate Change and Colonialism
Princeton University
February 29, 2020

Puerto Rico’s Constitutional Status
Hunter College (CUNY), New York City
September 20, 2019

American Conflict of Laws
Università di Firenze, Italy
May 6, 2019

International Law and Self-Determination
George Washington Law School
February 26, 2019

American Conflict of Laws | Interview
Unión Nacional de Juristas, Cuba
January 25, 2019

The Unincorporated Territories of the Unites States
Universidad del Este, Puerto Rico
December 6, 2018

The Legal Decolonization of Subaltern Peripheries
Université de Bordeaux, France
November 9, 2018

The Contributions of Chancellor Jaime Benítez
U.S. Congress
October 23, 2018

Investment Treaty Arbitration
University of Cartagena, Colombia
October 18-19, 2018

What Kavanaugh Means for Civil Rights
George Washington Law School
September 19, 2018

Puerto Rico’s Constitutional Crisis
Casa de América, Madrid
July 12, 2018

The Crisis in Puerto Rico: Citizenship
Rutgers Law School
April 13, 2018

Third Party Funding in International Arbitration
Georgetown University Law Center
February 26, 2018

A Conversation with Gonzalo Flores
Deputy Secretary General of World Bank’s International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)
David A Clarke School of Law (UDC)
February 21, 2018

Salient Issues in International Commercial Arbitration in the Americas
Washington College of Law (American University)
November 14, 2017

Colorismo: Cuba, Race and Culture in the Wave of Tourism
David A Clarke School of Law (UDC)
November 9, 2017

An Unsettled Century of U.S. – Puerto Rico Relations
Harvard Law School
October 27, 2017

Bankruptcy and Citizenship: Puerto Rico a 21st Century Colony?
Princeton University
October 20, 2017

Cuba’s Constitutional Moment Lecture
Cornell Law School, Ithaca NY
September 29, 2017

Comparative Constitutional Law Lecture
University of Cartagena, Colombia
August 23, 2017

U.S. and E.U. Territories: A Study in Contrasts
Institut des Amériques, Paris
June 1, 2017

Puerto Rico Status and Plebiscite
Hunter College (CUNY), New York City
May 12, 2017

Puerto Rico’s Status under International Law
Spring 2017 Meeting
ABA Section of International Law, Washington DC
April 26, 2017

100th Anniversary of the Jones Act
Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College (CUNY)
(held at La Raza Headquarters in Washington DC)
April 6, 2017

Cuba’s and Puerto Rico’s Constitutional Moment
Harvard Law School
March 3, 2017

Cuba’s New Foreign Investment Law
Columbia Law School
January 30, 2017

Cuban Bilateral Investment Treaties
University of Havana, Cuba
October 18, 2016

Puerto Rico, the Debt Crisis and Self-Determination
John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York City
April 15, 2016

The Ideological Decolonization of Puerto Rico’s Autonomist Movement
Cornell University
September 12, 2014

The Future Status of Puerto Rico
Harvard Law School
February 19, 2014

Links to most recent TV Interviews:

El Jurista (Bogotá, Colombia) (Biden and Latin America)
February 14, 2021

CNN En Español (Biden’s Challenges)
January 21, 2021

France 24 (Insurrection at the Capitol)
January 13, 2021

CNN En Español (The 25th Amendment)
January 11, 2021

CNN En Español (Post-Election Crisis)
January 4, 2021

CNN En Español (Legal Challenges to Presidential Vote)
November 17, 2020

CNN En Español (The Electoral College)
November 4, 2020

France 24 (Special Referenda in the States)
October 30, 2020

CNN En Español (COVID-19 and Trump Presidency)
October 3, 2020

NTN 24 (George Floyd)
June 3, 2020

NTN 24 (COVId-19)
May 8, 2020

NTN 24 (Presidential Clemency)
February 19, 2020

NTN 24 (The Presidential Race and the Electoral College)
February 12, 2020

CNN En Español (Trump’s Impeachment)
September 25, 2019

ABC 5 (Resignation of Puerto Rico’s Governor)
August 7, 2019

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico’s Supreme Court Decision)
August 6, 2019

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico’s Constitutional Crisis)
August 2, 2019

CNN En Español (State of the Union)
July 15, 2019

Univisión (Venezuela Crisis)
February 22, 2019

CNN En Español (State of the Union)
February 11, 2019

CNN En Español (The Venezuela Crisis)
February 5, 2019

CNN En Español (Government Shutdown)
January 2, 2019

CNN En Español (Latin America in 2019)
December 31, 2018

CNN En Español (Citizenship Clause of 14th Amendment)
October 30, 2018

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico: 1 Year After Hurricane Maria)
September 14, 2018

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico and the Omarosa Controversy)
August 15, 2018

Acento TV (Dominican Republic)
May 17, 2018

CNN En Español (Trump, Summit of the Americas, Syria and Facebook)
April 10, 2018

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico’s Oversight Board)
April 5, 2018

CNN En Español (U.S. Immigration Reform)
February 15, 2018

CNN En Español (Government Shutdown and DACA)
January 22, 2018

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico in 2017)
January 3, 2018

CNN En Español (President Trump’s Asia trip)
November 16, 2017

CNN En Español (US Senate Race)
November 13, 2017

CNN En Español (Economic Impact of Hurricane Irma)
September 6, 2017

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico’s Debt Restructuring)
May 2, 2017

CNN En Español (Trumpcare)
March 24, 2017

CNN En Español (Cuba after Trump)
March 21, 2017

CNN En Español (Copyright and the Vatican)
March 1, 2017

C-SPAN (Inter-American Dialogue)
June 1, 2016

CNN En Español (PROMESA Bill)
May 19, 2016

The Puerto Rico Crisis (Universidad del Este)
May 9, 2016

Puerto Rico, Dominican, Caribbean Issues (Acento TV Dominican Republic)
May 6, 2016

Book Launch “La encrucijada” (Dominican Republic)
May 4, 2016

Book Launch “La encrucijada” (Puerto Rico)
February 3, 2016

CNN En Español (launch of second book “En la encrucijada” (2015))
January 29, 2016

El Vocero (launch of second book “En la encrucijada” (2015))
January 18, 2016

Telesur (US Presidential Politics)
November 3, 2015

Telesur (UN Vote on Cuba)
October 27, 2015

Telesur (On DNC Presidential Debate)
October 14, 2015

Telesur (On US – Cuba Relations)
September 29, 2015

CNN En Español (Puerto Rico’s Fiscal Crisis)
September 9, 2015

CNN En Español (the Jones Act)
August 4, 2015

Links to most recent Radio Interviews:

Puerto Rico’s Consensus Status Bill
May 26, 2022

NPR’s The Marketplace (Puerto Rico’s Fiscal Plan)
March 29, 2018

NPR’s 1A (Puerto Rico: 51st State?)
June 13, 2017

NPR’s The Marketplace (Tourism and Sport in Puerto Rico)
March 23, 2017

NPR’s The Marketplace (Puerto Rico Fiscal Crisis)
October 22, 2015

NPR’s The Marketplace (Puerto Rico Fiscal Crisis)
September 4, 2015

Links to selected Op-Ed columns (Non-Exhaustive):

With one vote, Congress can give Puerto Ricans the Right to Determine their Future, (w. Christina Ponsa Kraus)
Miami Herald
September 23, 2022

¿Hacia un nuevo orden mundial?
El Listín Diario (Dominican Republic)
May 17, 2021

¿Jueces por elección popular?
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
May 13, 2021

Washington, Moscú y Beijing: ¿Hacia un nuevo orden mundial?
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
May 2, 2021

El Gobernador de espaldas a la Constitución
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
April 22, 2021

¿Puede el presidente Biden variar el número de jueces del Supremo federal?
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
April 18, 2021

Los desafíos de Joe Biden
El Listín Diario (Dominican Republic)
April 17, 2021

PPD, Cláusula Territorial y Poderes Plenarios
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
March 28, 2021

Puerto Rico de vuelta al Supremo federal: el caso SSI
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
March 2, 2021

El gobernador y su gabinete
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
February 17, 2021

El Primer Circuito de Boston
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
February 11, 2021

¿Puede el Senado juzgar al expresidente Trump?
El Nuevo Día (Puerto Rico)
January 14, 2021

Quote in Reuters (Puerto Rico approves new civil code)
May 15, 2020

Quote in Bond Buyer
October 8, 2019

The Sovereignty Question
The Hill
March 22, 2019

Quote in Boston Globe Editorial
September 18, 2018

O Estado de S. Paulo
May 14, 2017

Las Américas en tiempos de Trump
El País
November 23, 2016

An Unconstitutional Oversight Board for Puerto Rico?
The Hill
May 3, 2016

Puerto Rico ante el foro internacional
El País
March 3, 2016

In Search of a Puerto Rico Strategy
The Hill
November 5, 2015

La encrucijada puertorriqueña
El País
July 8, 2015