Message from the IALS President

We are half way through 2014, and it has been another exceptional time for the IALS. Coming off a dramatic increase in our membership and the adoption of the Global Standards and Outcomes of a Legal Education, we have just finished our third round of four regional deans’ workshops.

Our regional meetings explored the challenges facing legal education and our commitment to develop standards and guidelines. These regional meetings for law school leaders explored our relationship with other legal education stakeholders, along with issues of ranking and scholarship. We focused particularly on our relationship with the judiciary. High Court and Supreme Court jurists from each region worked with our law school leaders in building a bridge to better understand the challenges and developing a vision of cooperation to foster a coherent perspective on improving and unifying legal education.

The Annual Meeting Planning Committee, chaired by our General Secretary, Professor Barbara Holden Smith, decided unanimously to postpone. See her message below. While on the one hand we are disappointed that we will not be able to come together as a community until next year, this postponement does offer us an opportunity to further engage our membership by a variety of initiatives which are being proposed by our various committees.

We hope you will join us in these initiatives. These committees are now putting the final touches on existing and new programs which will serve our members. Some of these programs will be tied to the theme of the annual meeting. It will offer opportunities for faculty and students to be awarded for their scholarship as well as for innovations in curriculum and pedagogy. Programs will also foster collaborative research as well as provide an outlet for publications of relevant scholarship in our electronic law journal. We hope that you will take advantage of these opportunities.

We are deeply grateful to Instituto Empresa Law School and its Dean, Prof. Javier de Cendra, for its generosity in hosting both our Annual Meeting as well as the Global Law Deans’ Forum at its two campuses in Segovia and Madrid Spain. It is only through such active engagement and support by our members can the work of our Association be sustained. A very large THANK YOU to our host for next year – The IE Law School.

Also, we have embarked on a strategic study to restructure our Association to determine how we can sustainably and equitably govern ourselves. Presently, a sub-committee of the Board is gathering views and suggestions from our Governors. In order to ensure that the perspectives of our diverse membership are represented in this discourse, we have appointed interim governors to fill in accumulated vacancies. (Please see below). We welcome these members who have volunteered their time and resources to help shape our future.

We will be canvassing our membership after this first phase has been concluded. It is important that all our members have an opportunity to provide their input into this process. All this will lead to a proposed restructure plan amending our present charter. This will be put to the membership for approval at our annual meeting.

The Association continues with its prime mission of improving global legal education by learning from each other.  In order to accomplish this, we invite all of our members to participate.  There is much to teach and learn from each other.

All the best,

 Francis S.L. Wang

July 2014

 

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