Emily Hughes

Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
Edward F. Howrey Professor of Law

Professor Hughes joined the faculty at the University of Iowa College of Law in 2011. Before coming to the College, she was a professor at Washington University in St. Louis School of Law, where she taught criminal law, criminal procedure (investigations and adjudication), and a seminar discussing mitigation and the death penalty.

At Washington University she also co-directed the Criminal Justice Clinic, where she supervised law students representing indigent clients facing felony charges in Saint Louis County. Prior to joining the faculty at Washington University, Professor Hughes was Associate Director of the Center for Justice in Capital Cases at DePaul University College of Law, where she worked in the legal clinic representing indigent clients on capital cases.

Professor Hughes’s other experience includes working as a public defender for the Office of the Iowa State Public Defender in Iowa City, where she represented juveniles and adults on misdemeanor and felony charges. She also worked as a Sacks Fellow at Harvard Law School’s Criminal Justice Institute, working with clinical law students in Roxbury and Dorchester representing juvenile and adult clients on misdemeanor and felony charges.

Professor Hughes clerked for the Honorable Michael J. Melloy, then Chief Judge of the Northern District of Iowa (now with the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals).

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Research and Teaching: 

  • Criminal Law
  • Criminal Procedure



  • Michael Vitiello and Emily Hughes, CRIMINAL LAW SIMULATIONS (West 2014). 

Articles and Chapters in Books

  • Rob Smith, Zoe Robinson, and Emily Hughes, State Constitutionalism and the Crisis of Excessive Punishment (forthcoming).
  • Emily Hughes, Teaching Conflicts of Interest, 34 GEORGETOWN JOURNAL OF LEGAL ETHICS 1 (Winter 2021).
  • Emily Hughes, Investigation and Discovery Strategies for Capital Sentencing, in TELL THE CLIENT'S STORY: MITIGATION IN CRIMINAL AND DEATH PENALTY CASES (E. Monahan and J. Clark, eds.) (American Bar Association 2017) (chapter).
  • Emily Hughes, The Foggy Future of Miranda, in THE CONSTITUTION AND THE FUTURE OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE IN AMERICA (J. Parry and S. Richardson, eds.) (Cambridge University Press, 2013) (chapter in book).
  • Emily Hughes, Investigating Gideon’s Legacy in the U.S. Courts of Appeals, 122 YALE L.J. 2376 (2013) (article).
  • Emily Hughes, The Empathic Divide in Capital Trials:  Possibilities for Social Neuroscientific Research, 2011 MICH. ST. L. REV. 541 (2012) (article).
  • Emily Hughes, Arbitrary Death: An Empirical Study of Mitigation, 89 WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY LAW REVIEW 581 (2012) (article)


  • Illinois Bar
  • Iowa Bar
  • Missouri Bar
  • United States Supreme Court Bar
  • United States District Court, Northern District of Iowa Bar 
Professor Emily Hughes, University of Iowa College of Law
AB, University of Michigan, 1990
MA, Yale University, 1992
JD, University of Michigan, 1997