Lewis & Clark Law School understands that in today’s global economy, even lawyers practicing exclusively in the United States encounter transactions, disputes and other matters having an international component. The international context raises unique issues and requires special skills.
Our Global Law program, designed to give students the foundation they need to meet that challenge, has three components:
A broad and deep global law curriculum
We offer at all times a variety of courses and seminars within each of the following 5 principal areas: public international law, international business law, international environmental law, international dispute resolution, and comparative law. We have made it a priority to ensure that we have at least one full-time faculty member teaching in each of those areas (rather than relying on adjuncts), and we now have a permanent roster of more than 20 global law courses and seminars. We have also partnered with other law schools to provide focused summer programs and other educational opportunities on global law issues in foreign countries. We have also established the Global Law Certificate and curriculum planning guides to give students structure to their study of global law.
Focus on the practical
We believe that global law is increasingly of significant practical relevance, and we give students diverse opportunities to learn practical skills and obtain work experience within a global law context. Our offerings include the International Environmental Law Project; a multitude of global-law-themed externships that provide the opportunity to engage with lawyers in foreign countries in a structured learning environment; the Jessup Moot Court competition; and weaving practical skills into “podium” classes. In addition, students have the opportunity to engage in public interest legal activities that involve immigrant communities or have other components related to international legal issues.
Engagement with the broader global legal and academic community
We provide broad exposure and access to global legal concerns by bringing to campus prominent local, national, and international figures, by connecting our students to organizations involved in global law, and by maintaining a robust international LLM program in environmental law. Our MOUs with law schools in Europe and India result in faculty exchanges, joint conferences and other projects, and one-semester visits to LC by foreign students. The LS continuously strives to increase the diversity of our student body, including JD and LLM degree students from outside the United States.
Global Law News
Prof. John H. Knox of Wake Forest University School of Law spoke on the intersection of human rights and climate change at Lewis & Clark Law School in January 2017. Climate change has been called the greatest threat to human rights in the twenty-first century. The rapidly warming climate is already contributing to floods in India, droughts in southern Africa, and typhoons in the Philippines, and is threatening to displace communities from the Arctic to the South Pacific. How can a human rights perspective help to combat its worst effects? The title of his talk, “The Implications of Human Rights Law for Addressing Climate Change”, addressed these issues.
Professor Erica Lyman, Staff Attorney for the International Environmental Law Project, continued to support the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) as a legal advisor to the Maldives, which currently serves as the Chair of AOSIS, at the climate change meeting held recently in Marrakech, Morocco.
Lewis & Clark Law School’s International Environmental Law Project (IELP) is in South Africa for negotiations relating to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). Professors Chris Wold and Erica Lyman, along with 4 students, are advising governments and non-governmental organizations on strategies for protecting African elephants, white rhinos, tigers, and sharks.