Alexandra Natapoff

Associate Dean for Research
Professor of Law & Rains Senior Research Fellow
On leave for 2016-17 academic year on Guggenheim Fellowship

BA, cum laude, Yale University
JD, with distinction, Stanford Law School


Professor Natapoff’s scholarship has won numerous awards, including a 2016 Guggenheim Fellowship, the 2013 Law and Society Association Article Prize, and two Outstanding Scholarship Awards from the AALS Criminal Justice Section.  Her original work on criminal informants has made her a nationally-recognized expert: she has testified before Congress and her book Snitching won the 2010 ABA Silver Gavel Award Honorable Mention for Books. 

Professor Natapoff's current work--including her new book--focuses on misdemeanors and their powerful influence over the criminal system as a whole. She has been a Scholar-in-Residence at NYU, and has presented her misdemeanor work at numerous institutions including Harvard, the University of Chicago, the ABA, and the National Science Foundation. Professor Natapoff is also a member of the American Law Institute; in 2015 she was appointed as an Adviser to the ALI Principles of Law, Police Investigations Project.  She is quoted frequently by major media outlets.

Prior to joining the academy, Professor Natapoff served as an Assistant Federal Public Defender in Baltimore, Maryland, and was the recipient of an Open Society Institute Community Fellowship.  She clerked for the Honorable David S. Tatel, U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia, and for the Honorable Paul L. Friedman, U.S. District Court, Washington, D.C.

Selected Scholarship

In the News

Professor Natapoff is frequently featured in major media outlets including The New Yorker, The Economist, NPR, CBS, CNN, FOX, MSNBC, PBS, BET, ESPN, Huffington Post Live, New York Times, Washington Post, L.A. Times, Wall St. Journal, Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle, USA Today, and the Christian Science Monitor. She has contributed opinion pieces to Slate, the Washington Post, CNN Online, the San Francisco Chronicle, Reason Magazine, and Prison Legal News.

Public Service

  • Testimony before the Committee on Public Safety, California Senate, Sacramento, CA, June 14, 2011
  • Brief Amicus Curiae of the ACLU, Van de Kamp v. Goldstein (U.S. Sept. 4, 2008) (No. 07-854)
  • Testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, Oversight Hearing on Law Enforcement Confidential Informant Practices, Washington, D.C. (July 19, 2007)
  • Click here to watch Professor Natapoff's congressional testimony