Barbara J. Fick

Barbara J. Fick

Professor Emerita of Law

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Barbara J. Fick joined the Notre Dame Law School faculty in 1983 as a visiting associate professor of law, and became a permanent member of the faculty one year later. She earned her B.A. from Creighton University in 1972 and her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1976. A member of the Wisconsin Bar since 1976, Fick has worked as an associate at the Milwaukee firm of Foley & Lardner (1976-78) and as a field attorney for the National Labor Relations Board in Philadelphia (1978-83). While at the NLRB, she also lectured in law at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia (1981-82). She retired from the Law School in June 2018.

Fick’s teaching and scholarship concentrate on various aspects of labor law such as employment discrimination, individual rights in the workplace, and international and comparative labor law. Since 1995, she has worked with the American Center for International Labor Solidarity advising and teaching trade union leaders in Central and Eastern Europe on issues relating to protecting worker rights and ensuring domestic compliance with international labor standards. In the spring semester of 2000, Fick served as a visiting professor of law at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium).

From 1991-2009, Fick has served as Contributing Editor for Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases; from 1994-1997 as editor of International Contributions to Labour Studies; and from 1999-2007 as a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for the University of Pennsylvania Journal of Labor and Employment Law. She has been a member of the Executive Board of the U.S. branch of the International Society for Labor and Social Security Law since 2006-2012. At the University she is a faculty fellow at both the Institute for International Peace Studies (since 1987) and the Higgins Labor Studies Program (since 1994).

Courses Taught

  • LAW70353, Labor and Employment Law
  • LAW70355, Employment Discrimination Law
  • LAW70405, International and Comparative Labor Law
  • LAW70840: Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
  • LAW73353, Advanced Topics in Labor Law



  • International Labour Law (edited volume) (U.K.: Edw. Elgar 2016)
  • The American Bar Association Guide to Workplace Law, (Random House Reference, 2d ed. 2007).
  • The ABA Guide to Workplace Law (Times Books 1997).
  • Review and Assessment of Collective Labor Law in Eight Central European Countries (Free Trade Union Institute 1997).

Book Chapters

  • Supreme Court Labor Cases in the 2013-2014 Term, in 2014 RECENT DEVELOPMENTS IN EMPLOYMENT LAW (ICLEF, 2014)
  • Worker Well-Being in the 21st Century: Addressing the Psychosocial Context of Work, in Liber Amicorum Othmar Vanachter: Arbeidsrecht tussen wel-zijn en niet-zijn (Antwerp: Intersentia, 2009).
  • Law in the Workplace, in The American Bar Association Family Legal Guide 405-467 (Random House Reference, 3d ed. 2004).
  • Federalism and Labour Law: The American Experience, in Federalism and Labour Law: Comparative Perspectives (Othmar Vanachter & Martin Vranken eds., Intersentia 2004).
  • Federal Labor and Employment Law (Chapter 5) in Specialized Legal Research (P. Hazelton, ed., Aspen Law & Business, 2001).
  • Hiring Employees (Chapter 14); Laws Affecting Employees (Chapter 15); Terminating Employees (Chapter 16); Maintaining a Safe Workplace (Chapter 17) in The American Bar Association Legal Guide for Small Business (Three Rivers Press 2000).
  • Employment Discrimination: U.S.A., in XV World Congress of Labour Law and Social Security, Volume I, Discrimination in Employment 407 (R. Blanpain ed., Peeters 1998).
  • Law and the Workplace, The American Bar Association Family Legal Guide 394 (Times Books 1994).


Professor Fick has published numerous articles on labor law and selected workplace issues, including:

  • Corporate Social Responsibility for Enforcement of labor Rights: Are There More Effective Alternatives?, 4 Global Bus. L. Rev. 31 (2014).
  • Not Just Collective Bargaining: The Role of Trade Unions in Creating and Maintaining a Democratic Society, 12 Working USA: Journal of Labor and Society 249 (2009).
  • Social Security for Migrant Workers: The EU, ILO, and Treaty Based Regimes, 9 International Law: Revista Colombiana de Derecho Internacional 45-86 (2007).
  • Forward: Symposium on the American Worker, 20 Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics, and Public Policy 513-20 (2006).
  • El Papel Del Derecho en la Consecucion de la Igualdad: La Experiencia Norteamericana, 21 Revista de Derecho Social 49 (2003).
  • The Law and Practice of Collective Bargaining in the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland, 10 International Review of Comparative Public Policy 137 (1998).
  • The Changing Face of the American Workplace, 12 Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy 1 (1998).
  • The Case for Maintaining and Encouraging the Use of Voluntary Affirmative Action in Public Sector Employment, 11 Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy 159 (1997).
  • Survey of Recent Development in Indiana Law: Labor and Employment Law, 25 Indiana Law Review 1311 (1992).
  • Inherently Discriminatory Conduct Revisited: Do We Know It When We See It?, 8 Hofstra Labor Law Journal 275 (1991).
  • Negotiation Theory and the Law of Collective Bargaining, 38 University of Kansas Law Review 81 (1989).
  • Political Abuse of Hiring Halls: Comparative Treatment Under the NLRA and the LMRDA, 9 Industrial Relations Law Journal 339 (1987).
  • Foreword: Health in the Workplace, 62 Notre Dame Law Review 807 (1987).
  • Protecting Worker Complaints After Meyers Industries, 31 St. Louis University Law Journal 823 (1987).

Areas of Expertise

  • Comparative Labor Law
  • EEO Law
  • Employment Law
  • International Labor Law
  • Labor Law