School of Law hosts inaugural meeting for its International Advisory Board

Michelle Leung

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Eminent international legal experts gathered at City University of Hong Kong (CityU) for the inaugural meeting of the School of Law’s International Advisory Board (IAB) and a roundtable discussion on “Globalization and legal education” on 31 August.

The IAB comprises 13 members who are renowned professors from Harvard, Yale and Oxford universities as well as experienced legal practitioners. It has been set up by CityU’s School of Law to further enhance teaching and research.

At the inaugural meeting, Professor Richard Ho Yan-ki, CityU’s Acting President, thanked the participants for joining with CityU to promote globalized teaching and research in the legal field.

“CityU is dedicated to preparing our students for the globalized world. The establishment of the IAB is undoubtedly a major milestone for the School of Law, one that will help to nurture our students the necessary knowledge, skills, ethics and international outlook to become professionals,” Professor Ho said.

“I believe our students will benefit a great deal from the renowned board members,” he added.

Dr Simon Ip Sik-on, an experienced legal practitioner and educator, is the co-chairman of the IAB. He has been very supportive of CityU’s legal education since the establishment of the Department of Law in 1987.

“Hong Kong’s future lawyers require not only a deep knowledge of Hong Kong and mainland commercial laws and practices, but must also have an understanding of the laws and operating conditions of other global commercial and financial centres, where China’s investment funds will flow. The establishment of the International Advisory Board by CityU’s School of Law is an inspired move,” Dr Ip said.

“This year marks the 20th Anniversary of CityU’s School of Law and I am sure that, building on its remarkable past achievements, it will become one of the most successful and important law schools in China and the Asia Pacific region. The International Advisory Board will have a pivotal role to play,” he added.

Professor (Chair) Wang Guiguo, Dean of the School of Law, said providing students with the opportunities to exchange ideas with international legal experts was an important element in creating an internationalized learning environment.

“We will invite the IAB members to give lectures at CityU and explore more collaboration opportunities in academic and research areas,” he said.

To cater for the needs of the first batch of LLB graduates completing the four-year curriculum in 2008, the School is restructuring the Postgraduate Certificate in Laws (PCLL) programme to cover more practical skills, Professor Wang said.

The restructuring will involve a tremendous change in course materials, tutorial and examination contents. Mr Christopher Roper, an experienced legal training expert with a long-standing connection with CityU, has been invited to work with the School on this project.

Mr Roper is an Australia-based consultant in legal training and is well-known in Hong Kong for his part in the reform of legal education through the Redmond-Roper Report which was submitted to, and implemented by, the Hong Kong SAR Government a few years ago.

Participants in the roundtable discussion sharing their perspectives on legal education along the veins of globalization included:

l Professor David Tong Shuk-yin, Deputy President, CityU;

l Professor Stephen P Marks, François-Xavier Bagnoud Professor of Health and Human Rights, Harvard University, USA;

l Professor Anton Cooray, Professor of Law, School of Law, CityU;

l Mr Philip Dykes SC, Senior Counsel, and Former Chairman, Hong Kong Bar Association;

l Mr Michael Sandor, PCLL Programme Leader, School of Law, CityU;

l Professor Hoong Phun Lee, Sir John Latham Professor of Law, and Deputy Dean, Faculty of Law, Monash University, Australia;

l Professor Mitsuo Matsushita, Professor of Law, Seikei University, and Professor Emeritus, University of Tokyo, Japan; and

l Professor Noh-young Park, Professor of International Law, and Vice-President, Korea University, Seoul.

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