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We will be blogging about the first-ever Global Virtual Conference by Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, on the theme ‘Reimagining & Transforming the Future of Law Schools and Legal Education: Confluence of Ideas During & Beyond COVID-19’ on 25th, 26th and 27th November (Wednesday – Friday). This conference will celebrate India’s Constitution Day (26th November) and bring together nearly 170 Thought Leaders from the world of law including Law School Deans, Scholars, Supreme Court Judges, Lawyers, Law Firm Partners and representation from all spheres of the legal profession and legal education.


You may watch the conference live on JGU’s YouTube Channel on: https://l.jgu.edu.in/JGUGlobalConference-WatchLive

There is no need for any registration and you can watch it directly in the YouTube link given above.


Day 1: 25 November 2020

Session I: Sustaining Law School Publications During the Pandemic

As an academic, I’m extremely interested in expanding my knowledge and understanding of the publication process and hence, found the session on ‘Sustaining Law School Publications during the Pandemic’ to be very informative. The distinguished speakers of the session included Prof. B.S. Chimni, Research Professor of Law and Distinguished Scholar, Jindal Global Law School, Prof. Dr. Nusrat Baiznahov, Dean, School of Law and Public Policy, Narxoz University Kazakhstan, Prof. Poonam Saxena, Vice-Chancellor, NLU Jodhpur and Prof. Shiv Swaminathan, Associate Dean, Jindal Global Law School. The session was moderated by Prof. Indranath Gupta, Dean of Research, O.P. Jindal Global University.

The session discussed the problems in sustaining law school publications during pandemic including the lack of quality manuscripts, delay in the peer-review process, delay in printing and circulation, among others.

Prof. Swaminathan made an interesting observation about the impact of spaces and physicality on the research and publication process. He rightly pointed out that not just teaching but research is also an embodied activity and depends on the physical spaces and activities that we normally associate with the publication process, such as going to the library, attending conferences, meeting peers and so on. I think this is one aspect that is often missing from the discussions on the impact of the pandemic and is worth pondering over.

On similar lines, Prof. Chimni pointed out how the lack of peer interactions affect the process of refinement of research ideas, which ultimately affect the quality of research work. I agree with Prof. Chimni’s proposition and I think that this problem is exacerbated by zoom fatigue, which further discourages people from forming online communities or attending online seminars that they otherwise might be willing to attend.

Prof. Saxena mentioned that the screening process has become a mammoth task in times of pandemic since people are now writing more than ever. But the challenges associated with receiving quality manuscripts and effective peer-review process still remain and were reiterated by all the speakers, including Prof. Gupta and Prof. Chimni.

Interestingly, Prof. (Dr.) Baiznahov mentioned that the quality and number of publications at his university has turned out to be higher during the times of pandemic, since the students and faculty have more time than ever to work on their publications. While this gives us an insight into how the pandemic affects different culture and societies differently, I think that the positive development can be also attributed to the formation of small discussion and dispute groups at Narxoz University Kazakhstan. This is something that needs to be emulated in law schools not just in India but around the world, as was also suggested by Prof. Chimni and Prof. Swaminathan.

I would like to thank Jindal Global Law School for organizing this extremely informative and timely session. I also want to assert Prof. Chimni’s point about the need to establish a network of scholars across law schools and the need for organizing more workshops at the level of young scholars and students. These challenging times necessitate that academics across borders come together and provide the required intellectual and moral support to each other.

Aditi Singh is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.


Session II: Role of Quality Assurance Standards and Mechanisms in Reorganizing the Law School

I was waiting for this conference from the day it was announced. The panel had an invigorating discussion and it was very informative in all its sense.

The panel included Professor (Dr.) Marc De Vos Dean/Head of Department Macquarie Law School Macquarie University Australia, Professor (Dr.) Hartini Saripan, Dean, Faculty of Law Universiti Teknologi Mara Malaysia, Professor (Dr.) V.C. Vivekananda Vice-Chancellor Hidayatullah National Law University, Raipur India, Professor (Dr.) Gaganpreet Singh - Associate Professor & Director Office of Academic Planning Co-Ordination And Interdisciplinarity O.P. Jindal Global University, India.

The session was moderated by Professor (Dr.) Y.S.R. Murthy - Founding Vice-Chancellor Rv University, Bengaluru India. The session was based on the issue of the Role of Quality assurance standards and mechanism in reorganising law school.

Professor Murthy started the session by rightly pointing out all the obstacles that are faced by students and professor during Covid times including Lack of access to the campus library, Reduced interaction in class, lack of interest in-class studies. He also mentioned the point that all the coursed are very rigorous and demand motivation from the student. Changes in the assessment pattern have imposed certain issues including Problem for all those who cannot access network, even professors don’t have internet connectivity, Online virtual internship cannot be a substitute for a regular one. Nature of work and task assigned has change, Students and faculties exchanges os not possible. Robbing the potential learning opportunity.

I agree with Professor Murthy, he has pointed out all the problem that we generally face while taking online lectures. Along the same line, Professor Marc said there has been a vast change from regular classes to online, it has certainly transformed the way of teaching and learning. He mentioned how he ensures the quality of learning by making the content of the course and module dynamic and adjustive. He pointed out a very strong fact which we generally ignore that learning space becomes more flexible in the online platform and it is not possible in physical classes. I believe the Global Conference was not possible if it was not through an online platform. Online space has also given us some positive facets, we just need to be a bit more creative.

Professor Saripan, on the same lines discussed how the transition has exposed technology potential support for the class. Distance learning is just the start. We need to reimagine the educational structure to the more result-driven system. I think she stated correctly, we need to be prepared for the online system.

Fascinatingly, Professor Vivekanadan talked about two models he has been working upon in his university. First is F.T.L i.e Flexible Teaching and Learning in which professor upload the recorded lectures for students to listen to it anytime it is feasible for them and L.I.S i.e Live Interaction System where students may ask any doubt that they may have from the lectures. I think it’s a very good idea considering we all face internet issue some or the other day. Lastly, Professor Ganganpreet informed us how Jindal Global Law school has managed online classed during covid times.

Arushi Bajpai is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.


Session III: Taking Responsibility Seriously: Role of Law Students in Making Institutional Resilience Possible

The distinguished speakers of the session included Prof. (Dr.) S. Merci Debora, Prof. Kinshuk Jha, Prof. (Dr.) Charu Sharma from O P Jindal Global University, India and Prof. Managay Reddi from University of Kwazulu-Natel, South Africa, and Prof. (Dr.) Yubaraj Sangroula from Kathmandu School of Law, Nepal.

The COVID 19 pandemic has generated the greatest disruption of education systems in history, affecting the world at once. The crisis is exacerbating the preexisting disparities by reducing the opportunities that many could avail as provided in physical educational institutions. However, education disruption has had and will continue to have effects beyond education. On the other hand, the crisis has stimulated innovation in the education sector. We are witnessing innovative approaches in uplifting and reinforcing of education and training continuity. 

As an academician, my personal experience in such difficult times has been both perplexing, thought-provokingly learning. A major insight individually has been that the role of students in making educational resilience possible is momentous.

The session centred around the challenges that all the stakeholders in the educational sector are facing during the pandemic. The complications include not just imparting education but also providing means to online learning, as rightly quoted by Prof. Managay Reddi from University of Kwazulu-natel, South Africa.

Prof. Kinshuk Jha made an interesting observation about students acting positively and striking a balance while they dealt with their problems during the pandemic. He believes that the equilibrium in the institution has to be created by both students and faculty through numerous techniques. One such technique that he pointed out was keeping the classes focused and simple while keeping alive the primary objective of the learning.

On similar lines, Prof. Reddi pointed out that the university must provide access to knowledge. The personal touch with students is successful and “before connecting to the course, they should be connected to the human.” Professors should use the language of optimism and convey the institutional message in care.

Prof. Sangroula mentioned that it is important to associate the interest of students with professors by collecting timely feedback from the students. The institution must realize that society has been dynamic and that there has been an unceasing development. It is not enough to provide knowledge but to impart professionalism, and simultaneously involving student bodies in the policy formation.

Taking the same idea forward Prof. Debora spoke about systematic consultations with the students and time and again engaging in policy drafting. It is vital to energetically engage the student in deliberating institutional policies and making institutions adaptable with the possibility to suit fit the difficult situation at hand.

The session ended with the key message by Prof. Sharma that the students bare a greater responsibility in an institutional building. She also stressed that in COVID times our role as professors is to make students aware of the challenges and solutions of which must be mutually found. “Resilience will come when all the stakeholders are allowed to actively participate.”

Tanya Goyal is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O. P. Jindal Global University, India.


Session IV: Experiments in Curriculum Designing for Online Classes

A very good afternoon to all the engaged readers of the Legally India blog. I am Arijeet Ghosh, a Lecturer with Jindal Global Law School (JGLS), O.P Jindal Global University, and I will be handling the blog for the next hour. As you may have already familiarised yourself, O.P. Jindal Global University has organised a three-day marathon Global Virtual Conference on “Reimagining and Transforming the Future of Law Schools and Legal Education”. The conference deals with extremely pertinent themes of online education, which have arisen due to the ongoing impact of the global pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus.

In this session, we will be dealing with the theme regarding curriculum designing for online classes, and for this, we have distinguished scholars from India, France and Ireland, who will be presenting their thoughts on the kind of experiments they have undertaken so as to make curriculums more effective for online teaching.

The session, moderated by Professor Shruti Pandey, for the sake convenience, was divided into two themes: 1) On sharing the challenges that each of the panellists faced while having to adapt to the pandemic; and 2) What innovative steps were taken by the panellists in their own experience to deal with the same.

Professor Magali Julian started the conversation while highlighting that the pandemic brought in extreme complexities in the beginning as all the stakeholders had to immediately shift from their existing in-person teaching, to online teaching. She emphasised that throughout, all of them had to constantly adapt to the changing requirements of teaching during the last months. Professor Shane Kilcommins, then came in to succinctly summarise the challenges being faced across different aspects of online teaching, starting from the increase of workload (including teaching, research and administrative aspects), choosing the right online platforms, managing consistency in teaching including lecture delivery, advance sharing of reading materials as well as the financial impact of the pandemic on teaching. Professor (Dr.) Valentina Volpe, in particular, highlighted the challenge of lack of time, in regard to the need to quickly adapt, both for faculty as well as students, to the online mode of teaching. Most importantly, in the end, Professor Jhuma Sen, highlighted the need to also acknowledge that online education has also brought forward the already existing inequalities in society, where access to online education itself is a big issue when it comes to be seen from the lens of the marginalised, where the rural-urban divide has become more prominent.

To conclude the session, the panellists also tried to share their takeaways and the innovative steps they have undertaken to make online teaching more beneficial. Both Prof. Valentina and Prof. Shane emphasised on the liberating and emancipatory potential of online teaching, where they highlighted that online teaching has helped extend the reach of teaching across demographics, and once the pandemic comes to an end, there will be a lot of opportunities to explore this potential. Prof. Valentina also beautifully explained how the role of teachers has changed amidst the pandemic, where through her personal experiences, she expressed that teachers now have to not only guide students in their legal education, but also beyond it at times as Mentors, because the students have felt a lot panic and anxiety during this time. Prof. Jhuma also gave practical examples, where she shared that use of audio-visual technologies such as podcasts and film screenings need to be included in curriculums so as to grab the attention of students.  However, the word of caution by Prof. Jhuma, should always be kept in mind, specifically regarding the digital divide that has become prominent, in any discussion on online teaching and curriculum making going forward.

I hope you had a great experience by being part of this very informative session. Kindly stay tuned to the O.P. Jindal Global University YouTube channel, to be part of this fantastic initiative. 


Session V: The Idea of Law School During and After COVID-19  

I am an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School where I have been teaching laws governing properties and their commercialisations.  I had the pleasure of attending a three-day-long global virtual conference that is being hosted by OP Jindal Global University from the 25th of November to 26th of November, 2020 discussing the journey and fate of law schools amidst and after the pandemic. In the fifth thematic session of the conference that I attended, Prof. Raj Kumar inaugurated the session titled “The Idea of Law School during and after COVID-19” by giving the welcoming remarks.  

The discussion started on a realization brought forward by Prof. Shilpi Bhattacharya as to how the idea of a law school has changed from a mere knowledge-imparting centre to an institute serving the society where everything about law schools is being challenged, including the mode of education. The same can also be said for the idea of a law school from the point of view of students in matters such as attendance, evaluating teachers, etc. The dilemma of how law schools can now ensure equity and fairness in COVID-19 situations was addressed very fascinatingly by Prof. Amita Dhanda by laying emphasis on change. She brought forward the need to address the larger looming question in legal debates, i.e., how much of how we operate on has to be rule-bound?

Prof. Dhanda highlighted the recognition that this pandemic has extended to the communities that were possibly being left out before due to rigidity of classroom rules and it is now the opportunity for the educators to take a step back, utilize the asset that lecture recordings are and modify curricula in a way that incorporates all. She also reminded us of an ordinarily forgotten luxury that people in the legal arena might have- to look at the procedures form with some discretion, focusing more on the outcome than the rule-based engagement.

Adding another positive spin to the changing times, Prof. Krishnaswamy said what institutions and people have been shying away from- the need to accept that digitisation is here and it is here to stay. What started off as a basic instinct response from institutions in march 2020 to keep a semblance of academia alive, now needs to be converted into a long-lasting, hybrid academic structure that recognizes the eliminating geographical boundaries and demands a reassessment of curricula as synchronous and asynchronous. Now is the perfect time to sit and figure out what have we learnt, what have we changed and what are willing to take forward and how. While the idea of physical space might be very dear to the premium human existence, it is now the time to adapt to the sneak-peek extended by the pandemic about the changed interactions be it courtrooms or among colleagues. 

The positive outlook towards the ‘forced’ change was acknowledged by Prof. Nesi in a very simple, yet deep manner when he drew parallels with similar adjustments that we have made in daily lifestyles. In that spirit, he suggested that the role of an educator expand beyond classrooms. He suggested changes in courses that allowed students to engage beyond classrooms and lessons. Since digitization has practically made this a borderless classroom, now is the time to leave behind traditional ways of teaching and advise more socializing (virtually) to students so that they continue their learning experience beyond the lecture and lessons.

Adding to this opportunism, Prof. Martin Skop pointed out an incentive that institutions might have in this post-pandemic hybrid way of things. People across the world can now sit together with very little cost to bear and just the time difference to be mindful of!  The bandwidth of ideas shared among student has expanded. It is time to aim for more popularities of laws and legal issues. The classroom has widened.

I take home Prof. Dhanda’s attitude that encourages coming to terms with new realities for humans are innovative enough to figure out how to survive in the given times as they have always been.


Session VI: Situating the "COVID-19 Perspective" in Law School Curricula 

The distinguished speakers of the session included Prof. Ayodele V. Atsenuwa from University of Lagos, Nigeria Prof. Sital Kalantry from Cornell Law School, United State of America, Prof. Giorgio Resta from Roma Tre University, Italy, Prof. Jonathan Galloway from Newcastle University, United Kingdom, Prof. Ken Olipant from University of Bristol, United Kingdom, with Prof. (Dr.) Upasana Mahanta moderating the session.

The diverse panel deliberated the on the situation the COVID-19 perspective in law school curricula. Firstly, as a young academician, the very discussion to understand legal education

The pandemic has affected lives globally in ways more than the human race could have imagined about a year ago. Our sensibilities have bent differently in various aspects of life. As a law person as our worldview if affected by the challenges brought about aspects from making the curriculum, to imparting education to delivering justice. Law school education has been traditional in most cases because it is built on the presumption of physical availability of students and teachers through the semester. While the pandemic completely disrupting that possibility, technology has been monumental in enabling institutes to provide to its students. Though most law schools have shifted to online teaching and learning, the accessibility, efficacy and adaptability of the same were what the panel shared their reasoned opinions on.

In my personal experience of having taught five courses online over two semesters, I understand the limitations but also acknowledge the boon. The panel had split views on this particular issue. In one way, COVID only accelerated the pace of digitalization that universities were aiming to, but what has been the impact of the same on the stakeholders of the education system. The unexpected transferal has benefited few who are capable of independent learning but has also failed some. Prof. Resta discussed accessibility in terms of internet and data and Prof. Kalantry highlighted the unfitted public education system resources as one aspect, and then more importantly highlighted the issue of designing of the curriculum.

The panel stressed on the need to go back to the pedagogy of teaching and identifying the core objective of education. One of the most important learnings, as said by Prof. Atsenuwa was to understand that unless students are actively involved in the decision making and policy making framework, it will not be possible to achieve these core objectives of education. This needs a shift from the modern pedagogy and requires us to go back to the re-think the idea of law school (or any university) learning. As the panel discussed, students must be involved in the curriculum making exercise to allow maximum intervention from them at the right time. The panel also emphasized on the need for making the curriculum inclusive to be able to benefit those with learning disabilities.

An important question floated by the panel was to understand that whether should we go back to the physical classes in its entirety or work on improving the online mode of education itself. Either ways, it is important to rethink the pedagogy to enhance the delivery mechanism and stick to the lift and shift approach, especially in legal education, as suggested by Prof. Galloway and Prof. Oliphant.

Asmita Singh is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O. P. Jindal Global University, India.

Session VII: Revisiting the Criteria for Law School Rankings in the ‘New Normal’

The Global Virtual Conference on “Reimagining and Transforming the Future of Law Schools and Legal Education” organised by Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal University has undoubtedly provided us with an opportunity to evaluate and understand the important aspects of online education on a deeper level.

I am Auroshikha Deka – Assistant Lecturer in Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University. As someone who started their journey in academics right before the pandemic took over the entire world, I believe that it is highly effective to have these conferences at a time when it needs to be addressed the most.

The seventh session focused on “Revisiting the criteria for law school rankings in the new normal” moderated by Professor (Dr.) Ashish Bharadwaj – Dean, Jindal School of Banking & Finance and Executive – Director, Office of Rankings, Benchmarking and Institution Transformation, O.P. Jindal Global University. The panel included Professor (Dr.) Wesahl Domingo – Head, School of Law, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, Professor (Dr.) Aurélien Raccah – Vice Dean, International Development and Co-Director, International and European Law School, Université Catholique De Lille, France, Professor (Dr.) S. Shanthakumar – Director, Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar, India, and Professor (Dr.) William M. Treanor – Executive Vice President and Dean of the Law Center, Paul Regis Dean Leadership Chair, Georgetown University Law Center, Georgetown University, United States of America.

We all know that law school rankings play a significant role in the development and sustenance of an institution. However, the parameters and performance indicators for assessing a law school in a post-pandemic world might require some changing. The distinguished speakers on this panel agreed that there must be newer parameters to assess a law school’s performance. The panellists discuss why is it important to assess whether a law school has been able to ensure continuity of education in this current situation, keeping in mind the vision and mission of the institution. We must bring a change in the parameters of such ranking systems which will assess law schools based on how they performed during the pandemic rather than focusing on the traditional assessment criteria.

In the words of Professor (Dr.) William M. Treanor, we must introspect and understand what have we learned from this pandemic. We know, at times like this technology is very important and how relevant it is to a student’s educational experience. Law schools must focus on diversity amongst students and faculty members. Ranking parameters must focus on the school’s tech-readiness and the investment made to provide quality education to their students.

Professor (Dr.) S. Shanthakumar forwarded his opinion on how rankings must continue but the parameters or conditions can no longer be the same. we must reflect on all the challenges faced because of the pandemic and how the schools have done their best to overcome them. This equally includes students belonging to areas where they might not have the available technology around them as much.

The law school communities across the globe faced similar challenges with online education. However, it all comes down to how the schools have survived and guided the students and faculty members adapt to this new form of education. We must consider the innovative ways in which law schools have put their hard work to provide quality education, student inclusion and investment in technology which not only will prepare the schools for similar challenges in the future but also, continue to maintain the level of education they have promised to deliver to their students.

Session VIII: Evaluation and Assessment of Student Performance in Newer Conditions

As an educator, I’m always extremely interested in learning about new and effective assessment methods and more so, during the abnormal and challenging times we are in. I thus found the session on ‘Evaluation and Assessment of Student Performance in Newer Conditions’ to be very informative.

The distinguished speakers of the session included Prof. Dr. Adriana Zapata Giraldo, Dean, Faculty of Law, Universidad Externado de Colombia, Colombia; Prof. Dr. Mihir Kanade, Academic Coordinator Head of Department, International Law, Director, UPEACE Human Rights Centre, University of Peace, Costa Rica; Prof. Patricia Roberts, Dean, School of Law, St. Mary’s University, USA and Prof. Kelly Y. Testy, President & Chief Executive Officer, Law School Admission Council (LSAC), Former Dean, Washington School of Law, USA. The session was moderated by Prof. Dr. Saumya Uma, Associate Professor, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.

The session was particularly focused on the need for the exploration of more creative forms of assessment at the law schools. Such a need has been felt more than ever during the pandemic, which has forced us to move away from the traditional examination systems and to look for more creative and inclusive forms of assessment. Prof. Uma set the tone of the discussion by correctly pointing out that legal education is as much about learning as it is about lecturing and this is where the role of effective assessments come in.

All the speakers highlighted the need to move from traditional sit-down forms of assessment and embrace creative and more effective forms of assessment. Prof. Patricia mentioned that the students perform differently in a variety of assessment formats and the teachers and educators need to differentiate between students who perform well in limited-time based tests and those who perform well in other forms of assessments.

On similar lines, Prof. Testy highlighted that each student is different and no one size could ever fir all. She also emphasized the need to collapse the distance between learning and assessment by incorporating a variety of assessment formats. This was further explained by Prof. Kanade, who strongly opined that the traditional time-bound forms of assessment ought to have become redundant by now, since they only rely the memorization capabilities of students. He made an extremely pertinent point about the need to adopt an open book and/or practical case study and research paper-based exams, which focus on testing the critical thinking skills of the students. Adding a positive perspective to the current times, he highlighted the need to harness the opportunity presented by the changed format of teaching and learning to rethink the existing evaluation rubric.

I absolutely agree with the speakers and think that it is important to give each and every student enough space to explore their potential and give their best performance. I am also in complete agreement with Prof. Giraldo, who observed that the skills that we as teachers seek to impart in our students should inform our decisions regarding the form of assessment to be used. Prof. Kelly further highlighted how the educators should focus on a variety of assessments depending on the learning outcomes of the course being taught.

It was an extremely enriching and invigorating session. I would like to thank Jindal Global Law School for organizing this three-day marathon Global Virtual Conference on “Reimagining and Transforming the Future of Law Schools and Legal Education”. 

Aditi Singh is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University


Session IX: Before the Law School: Law School Admissions During COVID-19

COVID-19 brought the world to a grinding halt. The sufferers included, inter alia, students all across the globe who had dreams of studying in top universities. Most of them either deferred their admissions, or completely opted out of the process.

However, this change is only constant. Universities have adopted this new lifestyle while keeping their academic calendars on the loop, without jeopardizing the students’ careers due to delays that are even beyond their scope. The distinguished panel that consisted of Professor Gregory N. Mandel (Temple University), Professor Eduardo M. Penalver (Cornell Law School), Professor Elizabeth Kronk Warner (University of Utah), and Professor Arjya Majumdar (O.P. Jindal Global University) had an insightful discussion that dealt with the challenges for Law Schools in terms of outreach and Admissions during COVID-19.

Professor Majumdar initiated the discussion by appreciating the LSAC’s efforts in dealing with the current scenario by integrating a remote proctored AI based test that could be taken from anywhere in the world. While other universities struggled with their online tests, or even conducted offline tests (thus risking the health of the students amidst the pandemic) – the LSAT helped universities walk through any perceived delays that were caused due to the pandemic. Carrying the discussion forward, Professor Warner lauded the efforts of the LSAC in making these tests far reaching through innovation in technology and tie ups, that helped students not having an internet connection/laptop with the required resources, courtesy the tablets it offered and the stable WiFi connection from the Hotels it tied up with. Talking about outreach, she mentioned that with the help of technology, law schools have had better outreach – students could go through building tours through the websites, or even attend live tours with the help of stable cameras.

Professor Gregory made an intriguing remark here. He added that even though we are working remotely, only a little has changed. The schools are using similar methods of attracting students, or even the same criteria to admit students. He asserted the need to look beyond these standardised tests – to focus on students with qualities, who have demonstrated their skills through work experience, volunteering, or military services – and also to build support infrastructure for students with mental health issues.

Professor Eduardo remained doubtful of the AI proctored tests as there is only limited data available to the functioning of AI. Moreover, he stressed on the connection between performance in first year of law school and professional success. Data showed that some students who were toppers in these “standardized tests” underperformed while some who were actually waitlisted, went on to become toppers and achieve a lot more. The pandemic has only brought these qualitative assessments to the forefront, and this should be the way forward.

Interestingly, Professor Gregory shed light on a survey that showed that freshers and LLM students constituted the highest percentage who wanted to get back to physical classes. And it is obviously because there is a lack of inter-personal interaction among them – they don’t know each other, and the likes of Zoom and Teams, cannot fill those gaps.

This enriching discussion made me think about the whole admissions process beyond the pandemic. It makes me re-think of the set criteria’s/qualities we look in a probable candidate, and intrigues me to get onto new research on whether we actually have been doing it right this whole time?

Kanishk Rai is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal University.

Session X: Role of Emotional Intelligence in law school governance:

The conference was one of the most awaited conference, as this conference by O.P Jinal University not only highlighted and focused on the leading pandemic issue but was also relatable on all the levels and was extremely informative on how should we deal with various aspects legal education post-pandemic.

The session was about “Role of emotional intelligence in law school governance”

The panel included, Professor (Dr.) Jorge Arturo Cerdio Herran, Head academic department of law academic division of economics, law and social sciences instituto tecnológico autónomo de méxico Mexico, Professor (Dr.) Ian Holloway, QC Dean faculty of law University of Calgary Canada, Professor Christiana Ochoa, professor of law, Indiana University Mexico, Gateway Indiana University, United States of America and  Professor Ronald H. Weich Dean School of Law, University of Baltimore United States of America.

The session was moderated by Professor (Dr.) Stephen P. Marks françois-xavier bagnoud professor of health & human rights, Harvard University, United States of America.

Professor Stephen started the session by stating his encounter with legal education and how his professors challenged him to analyse the case laws moving on to how legal education should not on focus on the depth of the law subject but also take into consideration the broader view having exceptional knowledge in areas such as emotional awareness and technical skills. He further defined emotional intelligence as the ability to perceive, use, understand and manage emotions.

On challenges with reconsidering teaching methods in law school, Professor Christiana Ochoa said that “necessity is the mother of invention” and that the pandemic forced the law schools to make immediate and necessary re-invention with the teaching methods like taking classes online, resorting to pass/fail grading basis but with that also accepting the fact that this is not sustainable, thereby leading the law schools to collaborate and come up with creative solutions.

Professor Ronald shared his views on mental health issues between faculty and students. He stated focused on how we are all in this together and that faculties have grown a new limb by learning to work with advance technology. he is of the view that once the pandemic is over the benefit of a new set of skill acquired and technology learned shall be taken in the educational sector. I could not agree more with Prof. Ronald on this point. However, he further did acknowledge that mental health has been stressful for everyone and setting up student-assistance and counselling programmes have been helpful. Professor Dr. Jorge Arturo, highlighted a very interesting point as to how the professors needed to be more aware and attentive towards student behaviour, now more than ever, to cater to their mental health issues. This point made so much sense when he gave in the example as to how professors should observe the student on camera or during the personal interaction session.

The leadership litmus test and the importance of the ability to read body language/expression was discussed by Professor Dr. Ian Holloway. He further stated that faculty/deans/leaders are under the microscope and should be authentic, personally aware and updated with the technology. This is my view, is an extreme necessity in today's’ scenario.

On discussing Pressure of household responsibility and inequalities (socio-economic) being aggravated, Professor Christiana stated how equalised building and infrastructure helped students to overcome with inequalities faced by them on daily basis and further stated that these issues must be dealt wisely with close communication. Professor Jogre and Professor Dr. Ian agreed with Professor Christiana on this point. Professor Jorge further raised a very good point about early detection/identification of students considering dropping out or taking a gap year and discussed coaching as well as reassuring them that situation would get better. With this, he also emphasised on getting students back in line and restructuring their goals. He was confident that this process of micro-management is time taking but on establishing would work well.

Towards the end of the session Professor Jorge, Professor Dr. Ian and Professor Ronald discussed meticulously, on how the law schools should think differently while admitting students and take in students who focus on Emotional Intelligence, humanity and empathy. Further while concluding, Professor Jorge said that not only admission in law school require change but the faculty should also focus on training and teaching students as per the changing needs of the society.

The entire session was informative and enlightening.

Manya Pundhir is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O. P. Jindal Global University, India.  


Day 2: 26 November 2020

Session XI: Role of "Legal Studies" in reinventing the law school

The Global Virtual Conference has opened for the second day when India is celebrating the Constitution Day with a session on ‘Role of “Legal Studies” in reinventing the law school’. The distinguished panel consisted of legal academicians from all over the world and as an early educator, I found this session enlightening especially when it comes to moving beyond the doctrinal approach of teaching law and social problem-solving.  

The moderator of the session, Professor Prabhakar Singh,  started the discussion by suitably quoting the former President of the United States Barack Obama, who believes that “The study of law can be disappointing at times, a matter of applying narrow rules and arcane procedure to an un-cooperative reality” and that “the law is also memory; the law also records a long-running conversation”. It was emphasized that the study of law has been paralyzed because of the pandemic and universities are moving beyond the conventional approach to online classroom teaching.  

The first question posed to the panel was on the role of legal studies in reinventing the study of law, to which, Professor Camille Nelson, Dean William S. Richardson School of Law University of Hawai'i At Manoa United States of America, responded by challenging the notion that law schools don’t already embed what we call legal studies in their curriculum.  

Professor (Dr.) Simon Chesterman, Dean NUS Faculty of Law National University of Singapore, added that the doctrinal approach of teaching and learning law has been supplemented with other disciplines and emphasized on the importance of experiential learning for practical understanding of the discipline. With globalization and technological advancements, students need to be prepared for the changing times with increasing dependence on legal tech.  

Professor Erik G. Jensen, Director Rule of Law Program Stanford Law School Stanford University United States of America, then added that there is a bewildering array of socio-eco-politico problems that requires policy-relevant curriculum and approach for social problem solving.  

It was further highlighted by Professor Michael Adams, Head of School of Law University of New England, Australia, in the session that a huge percentage of students even after taking law firm jobs branch out into becoming playwrights, diplomats, business experts or start non-profit organizations and therefore, there is a need to shape and nurture students through inter-disciplinary studies to prepare them for such roles. The importance of interdisciplinary studies was stressed upon with an example of a COVID vaccine coming in and the associated legal issues that will entail the implementation of it in different parts of the world.  

The session also talked about flipped classrooms and how it is important to ‘listen to learn’ and not only ‘listen to respond’ to keep the students interested in the curriculum characterized with traditional and historical elements. The role of assessments in teaching was also touched upon and practice of adding other incentives for learners was shared.  

Prof. Nelson mentioned about virtual community building in this time of pandemic by recreating movie nights, trivia sessions and such other events when both learners and teachers are facing depression and anxiety issues to which one of the panellists added how cabin fever or Zoom fatigue have become popular terms and there is a dire need to get out and travel for both teachers and learners.  

The session included topics ranging from the transformation from the traditional way of learning, inter-disciplinary studies and the need to look beyond the doctrinal approach of learning the discipline of law as a philosophical study.  

Medhavi Singh is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University. 


Session XII: Setting Digital Classrooms to Facilitate Teaching and Learning

OP Jindal Global University hosts a three-day virtual conference on the theme 'Reimagining & Transforming the Future of Law Schools & Legal: Confluence of ideas during & beyond COVID-19'. The conference deals with topics of online education that not only evaluates the importance of online education in a situation of a pandemic but even post-pandemic times that can facilitate many academics and students to take advantage of this.

The 2nd day of the conference with the 12th session on the theme ‘Setting Digital Classrooms to Facilitate Teaching and Learning’ having a panel of distinguished speakers - Ms. Gowree Gokhale, Partner, Nishith Desai Associates, India, Professor (Dr.) Andrew Lynch, Acting Dean, UNSW Law School, University of New South Wales Sydney, Australia, Professor (Dr.) Trish K. Mundy, Dean, School of Law, University of Wollongong, Australia, and Professor Jeremy Wade, Associate Professor of Practice, Director, Office of Academic Innovation & Blended Learning, OP Jindal Global University, India. The session was moderated by Professor (Dr.) Manveen Singh, Associate Professor & Associate Dean, Jindal Global Law School, OP Jindal Global University India.

The session was inspired by the importance of institutional adoption of online learning especially legal education. The session highlighted the importance of online legal education pertinent to aspects like legal aid, moot courts, etc. All the speakers agreed with the difficulties posed in online legal classes, however, they highlighted the advantages of online mode and platform by sharing experiences and classroom teaching like expert lectures and conducting online moots.

Across the globe, educational institutions have witnessed many issues with online education and some were able to overcome those smoothly than others depending on their resources and availability. The promising part of the session was to talk about the differences and discuss possible solutions to them. Professor Manveen Singh from the very beginning of this session focused on this issue and posed questions to the speakers. Speakers like Professors Trish Mundy and Andrew Lynch focused on optimising teaching by sharing experience and teaching resources across borders. One of them commended the JGU’s effort of conducting this conference which is exactly what is meant by sharing institutional experiences and resources. Professor Trish emphasised the participation of educational institutions and the government in making technology available to students who cannot afford it. Professor Jeremy Wade reflected on his experience gained in this year through online mode and believed that in the future we can have the best of both worlds (online and offline teachings).

Interestingly, what stood out of all the speakers is the answers of Ms. Gowree Gokhale, where she talked about her limited experience of teaching at Jindal Global Law School. Though she is a lawyer by profession and holds responsibility as a Partner at a leading law firm in India, she talked about pedagogies for online education and how to make a classroom more interesting. Her key to a successful class is to ensure students interact by giving them short assignments at the end of each class.

Shilpa Singh Jaswant is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University. 


Session XIII: Teaching Professional Ethics during COVID-19

The session began with Professor Shaun Star, moderator for the session, drawing a parallel to what Dr. Ravishanker Prasad said in his inaugural address, about how the digital eco-system kept the entire world intact during the time of the global pandemic. As a young academician, I believe it becomes important to gather as to how the legal system in its entirety embraced technology to keep floating during tough times.  As Professor Shaun Star said in the session, the evolving pedagogy of legal system and value during Covid-19 has had an immense effect on Legal Ethics and it becomes imperative to acknowledge and learn as to how we can incorporate that in our education system.  

The panel included Barrister Vishavjeet Chaudhary, Advocate Supreme Court of India, Professor Fu Hualing, Dean Faculty of Law, The University of Hong Kong, Professor Anna Cody, Dean School of Law, Western Sydney University Australia and Professor Faij Tajuddin, Associate Professor of Practice, O.P Jindal Global University, India. 

The session kickstarted with Professor Shaun Star addressing the Panel on Role of Ethics in future generation of lawyer and changing role of technology on Ethics, especially in legal system and education. Professor Anna Cody succinctly put forward that there is an important duty to create proper access to the justice system for clients of all levels, advantaged and disadvantaged. Moreover, how our own code of conduct is affecting procedural issues in Courts and people of the Courts. Post this, Professor Fu Hualing of the University of Hong Kong, commented on competency and fiduciary duties of lawyers. He said that these are some values which do not and must not change because of Covid. Stressing on the need for online communication and how it is here to stay post-pandemic, Professor Hualing very aptly put forward the need to teach students the importance of smart contracting and e-filing systems. 

Discussing aspects of the impact of the pandemic on legal ethics could not be better answered by someone who is practising in the field of law as a lawyer and interacting with clients on a regular basis. Barrister Vishavjeet Chaudhry, Advocate of the Supreme Court of India said that there are three essentials of ethics in the legal system. First, is to acknowledge the practice of confidentiality for clients, second is to make sure that general code of conduct like proper dress code during hearings doesn’t take a back seat and third, role of a lawyer in making sure there is proper access to justice. Being a part of the legal fraternity, I think the aspect of the justice system being made accessible by lawyers is an important issue which usually gets lost in the scheme of larger things.  

Like Professor Faij Tajuddin, O.P. Jindal Global University, said - in the Indian context, it is important to consider the question of accessibility of technology as not everyone has the same level of technology and infrastructure. He drew a very realistic example by stating that the Supreme Court can respond to the pandemic in a much different way than a lower court in India.  

The panel was then addressed with a question on access to justice and growing reliance on technology by our Moderator, Professor Shaun Star to which Professor Cody answered that pandemic environment came on too quickly which led us to respond fast. Some good things came out of this as e-filing systems were updated but then as far as access to justice goes, there is a lingering fear that this technological advancement might just disadvantage those people who are lacking economically and otherwise. Especially in cases of protection of refugees, serious criminal charges, role of online does not provide for one size fits all approach. 

To this Advocate Vishavjeet responded that unequivocal trials are meant to be about judging people and cannot be replaced by online trials. He mentioned a recent Parliament report which mentioned how upon the end of the pandemic, online interaction will be maintained. Although this system is very accessible and inclusive, in my opinion, we should be cautious about replacing physical hearing in serious criminal matters especially. Professor Hualing also reiterated that in the aspect of judging and trials, it is important to see the condemned in person to read the body language and that it plays an important role in judging.  

Coming to one of the more important aspects of Panel discussion on what role do law schools play in embarking on ethics journey and how to approach legal ethics, Professor Cody had a great insight. She mentioned 3 points which are important to value- First, what framework enables lawyers to work efficiently and how to create an ethical system which would make lawyers responsible. Second, teach reflection skills for lawyers. Meaning the art of looking into themselves, their assumptions and ideas and preconceptions, biases, etc. and third- the idea of ethical muscle and getting used to ethical decisions and establishing structures to make ethical decisions. 

Making another point, Advocate Chaudry shed light on 3 essential ethics in law school – institution of morality, duties of lawyers during pandemic and ability to be a part of the system and ownership of the system.  

Coming to think of it, realising ethical aspect of the legal system has been one of the more underrated parts of legal education which was highlighted efficiently by our panellists in today’s invigorating discussion.  

Shreya Shreekant is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.   


Session XIV: Re-opening Campuses and Social Distancing Norms

A very good afternoon to all of you. Having been away from the university since the lockdown started in March and taking online classes from home, I was looking forward to this session on re-opening the campuses and social distancing norms. Offline classes are not just important for the students but also for the faculty to be able to provide proper guidance to the students. While we all are striving to make online classes more interesting for the students, I, along with many others, miss the charm of face-to-face interaction with the students.

However, it might not be possible to conduct offline classes soon without following the social distance norms which is why it was so amazing to hear about what measures can be taken for the same from the diverse panel of the session on re-opening campuses which included Professor (Dr.) Nurul Barizah, Universitas Airlangga, Indonesia, Professor (Dr.) Narufumi Kadomatsu, Kobe University, Japan, Professor (Dr.) Purvi Pokhariyal, Nirma University, India, Professor (Dr.) Lutz-Christian Wolff, Dean, Faculty of Law, The Chinese University of Hong Kong and Professor (Dr.) C. Raj Kumar, Founding Vice Chancellor of O.P. Jindal Global University. The session was moderated by Professor (Dr.) Oishik Sircar.

The session started with Professor Oishik giving an introduction to the theme and emphasised pedagogical concerns with respect to re-opening of campuses in addition to the infrastructural, technological and psychological concern of fear among students and parents who might be scared about the health of their children.

Professor Nurul Barizah said that re-opening the campus would require changes such as ensuring the free circulation of air, number of students in the classes, physical distancing requirements etc. She stated that opening of the campus, even by the next semester in February, is not possible given the current situation. She pointed out that transition can be made through blended learning wherein only 25% of students can enter the campus and 75% can join online.

Professor Kadomatsu said that the pandemic situation is better in Japan as compared to other countries which is why some universities in Japan opened their campus. He further added that Kobe University will reopen in April 2021 for which they will try to follow the social distancing norms and combine the benefits of online and offline teaching.

Professor Purvi talked about the autonomy of the students and how students should have autonomy over the learning process during and after the pandemic. She stated that opening the university, for now, may not be a human approach as we have to shift our focus more on learners. The online classes facilitate this and we, as teachers, need to reimagine our roles for the same.

Professor Lutz-Christian stated that their University is following the dual model of offline and online teaching which has worked well so far. As far as teaching pedagogy is concerned, students were happy with the online classes since some of the courses such as legal writing is easier to teach online as documents can be shared easily. So while face-to-face classes are advantageous, online classes also have their own advantages.

Prof. Raj stated that in India, the challenge is to what extent the Government and Regulatory bodies will allow the institutions to open. The faculty members are conscious about the pedagogical concerns with the new normal. However, there is an advantage of technology which leads to greater democratisation of knowledge. While all of us are eager and anxious to bring the students back to campus, we are also mindful of the situation that we are in.

Pankhudi Khandelwal is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University. 


Session XIV: Shifting Focuses in Legal Research During the Pandemic

If there is one central intellectual reality in the twenty-first century it is that the pandemic has become the new normal. Bad news sells papers, but it also opens doors to research. I will be shedding light on the discussion that took place on ‘Shifting Focuses in Legal Research During the Pandemic’ between our distinguished speakers, namely, Professor Tan Cheng-Han, Dean of Law School at City University, Hong Kong, Professor Khagesh Gautam, Associate Professor at O. P. Jindal Global Law School, India, Dr. Susan L. Karamanian Dean of law college, Hamad bin Khalifa University, Qatar, Dr. Bertil Emrah Oder Dean of law and UNESCO Chair on Gender Equality and Sustainable Development, KOC University, Turkey, and Dr. Vishwas H. Devaiah, Vice Dean, Jindal Global Law school, India who will be mediating the event.

Is there a significant shift of research to pandemic related topics?
Professor Tan Cheng-Han believes that the current situation has not pushed all researchers to focus on the pandemic although not denying the reality of a change in focus. He mentions that a multidisciplinary overview for legal researchers is essential regardless of the pandemic. Important questions asked due to the pandemic about legal framework.

Professor Khagesh Gautam adds that the pulls and pressures due to the pandemic have allowed researchers and himself to think about solutions which may have escaped his thought process in the old normal.

Dr. Susan adds that if considering human rights with the perspective of the right to health, we will be able to focus on the issues that the pandemic has brought forth specifically freedom of expression, ability to gather, religious freedom and the limitations during the pandemic. We must also focus and reexamine the role of the state. The long-term implication is to think about to what extent we are going to move beyond the rights approach we have in today's ‘right’s based’ society.  Touching upon the multidisciplinary aspect is a benefit specifically when dealing, with medication and diagnosis being online allows individuals to have a legal perspective and have access to legal implications to which individuals may not have had access to otherwise.

Dr. Bertil Emrah Oder goes on to say that Coivd-19 has indeed disrupted the constitutional and legal settings. The expert committees have played a significant process in regulating but have lacked transparency and therefore causing distress in terms of democracy and autocracy. The erosion of civil liberty and in some jurisdictions the endorsement of the right to health have been challenged and in the current economic depression has brought an urgent need of critical theories of law, from a new perspective. She believes that policy-oriented legal research as it plays a significant role in the aftermath of the pandemic, in both multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary aspects. 

How do we encourage students with research?
Prof. Chang empathizes with the doctoral students as they may miss out on academic appointments due to the economic downfall. He believes that the pandemic has brought to the research a once in a lifetime opportunity, by looking at normative answers with an aspect of Covid 19. This will prevent your work from being limited to this period but will extend to future post-pandemic research.

Prof. Khagesh answers the question with a positive spin and mentions that although he discovered a new world of technology which allowed him to work more effectively and enhanced productivity. He believes that even after the pandemic we will never go back to our old normal, in both legal practice and in the world of academics. He believes that academic appointments must be rethought, and individuals who have been well versed with technology will thrive, and hence individuals will have to evolve into a tech-friendly society.

Dr. Susan goes on to say that students who are working in research particularly dealing with individual liberties,
Students need access to sources and what she believes is challenging is to get students to be used to working with these portals and technology. Another issue which arises is that individuals may not be able to afford the same.

Dr. Bertil believes that meetings which deal with aspects beyond research work along with the establishment of a network between their peers which allows PhD students to communicate freely with other students, along with workshops and setting realistic milestones will benefit additionally it is also important to keep in mind mental health issues.


How has it affected the research funding?

Prof. Chang believes that the major problem for law schools is the extent which the pandemic is relevant. He believes there won't be a major shift in terms of funding as it is a common practice to convince organizations that legal research is essential and important so what universities and academic organizations must think about what is relevant during the present time along with the post-pandemic era. 

Dr. Susan believes that the regulatory aspects will be in the spotlight, by focusing on the consequences that digitalization may have on data privacy.

Dr. Bertil mentions that the pandemic is likely to affect the income for universities in Europe. The post-pandemic will play a key role in university funding, however, there are situations which may enhance new research areas such as domestic violence, gender equality and other social sciences. Caution is to be sought in terms of income and research funding.

Is the approach of limiting areas relating to Covid negative or positive? Is it diminishing the quality of work?
Prof. Chang highlights his perspective that the peer reviews contribute to a high quality of work and that the esteemed journals are looking for good quality work however the process may be slightly lengthier. Prof. Khagesh agrees with Prof. Chang mentions he has not experienced Covid limited research. Dr. Susan adds that although there are journals dedicated to Covid related aspects however journals are not just looking for Covid related issues and that the quality of articles are not being diminished in any way.

Aneela Fatima is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.  


Session XVI: Relevance of Interdisciplinary Legal Studies During the Pandemic

Currently, the entire world is eyeing the development of a COVID vaccine the successful creating and distribution of which relies on enormous amounts of multidisciplinary collaboration across the board. This set the centre-stage of today's discussion on the Relevance of Interdisciplinary Legal Studies During the Pandemic. The session addressed divers and insightful issues such as the challenges faced in adopting an interdisciplinary approach to legal education, designing an interdisciplinary curriculum, and encouraging collaboration across fields.

The discussion witnessed a rich panel comprising of Professor (Dr.) Soledad Atienza Dean Law School, IE University Spain, Professor (Dr.) Thom Brooks, Dean, Durham Law School Durham University, United Kingdom, Professor (Dr.) B.B. Pande, Research Professor of Law & Distinguished Scholar Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, India, Professor Caroline Colessenior Lecturer & International Convenor, Aston Law School, United Kingdom, and Professor Deepanshu Mohan, Associate Professor, Jindal School of Liberal Arts &Humanities. The session was moderated by Professor (Dr.) Gitanjali Surendran, Associate Professor, Jindal Global Law School O.P. Jindal Global University India.

The speakers agreed in unison that the pandemic should be viewed as a blessing in disguise forcing us to bring together different understandings in facing the pandemic.

The domino effect of the same is the realization for the need for an interdisciplinary approach in training future professionals across all disciplines in general and legal education in particular. Thus, the challenges faced in the present should be viewed as our strength in preparing for a better tomorrow.

As per Professor Brooks, legal education is an ongoing interdisciplinary project where the adequate emphasis is needed on the teaching of different legal systems. The pandemic has brought a crucial understanding of the fore that legal systems do not act independently. For instance, once the vaccine is developed, significant cooperation will be needed amongst different legal systems for effective patenting, licensing and distribution of the vaccine. Therefore, it is essential to equip students with interdisciplinary knowledge.

One way of doing this is to think about the mission of the modules created by law schools and what should be the strategy to achieve the mission. Instead of viewing the law degree solely as academic qualification, efforts must be made to get in touch with the practice through partnerships with firms and the bar enabling students to acquire apprenticeships. Further, the true meaning of interdisciplinary is not just linking with different subjects together but also engaging with different legal systems. The role of technology must also be recognized in taking an interdisciplinary approach.

In the same vein, Professor Atienza emphasized that law cannot be taught in isolation with other disciplines. In promoting teaching programs that are more interdisciplinary the biggest challenge is regulation to access legal profession, which makes law schools design programs that only cover legal aspects and not other disciplines. Some law schools are overcoming this challenge by launching dual degree programs or offering interdisciplinary programs that provide comprehensive training for problem-solving through tools rooted in an understanding of different perspectives.

The pandemic has taught us that current complex problems faced by the world cannot be solved with a single perspective and the need of the hour is to bring various disciplines together and train future professionals with a multidisciplinary education. This will equip students with an understanding of legal systems other than their own which will prepare them to practice the law with a multidisciplinary approach.

Professor Colessenior echoed these sentiments and added that the value of placement opportunities should also be incorporated in designing an interdisciplinary course as well as capitalizing on the diversity of the institution. An interdisciplinary degree should be one that pulls on the strengths of different disciplines along with combining the practical and social experience emanating from clinical education and incorporating ethics to draft a well-rounded degree.

Professor Mohan and Professor Pandey highlighted the crucial areas that need attention in imparting interdisciplinary knowledge – namely, 1) social and economic rights, 2) healthcare and 3) justice. As per Professor Pandey, Indians faced a growing disparity in equal access to education with a large part of the population not being able to access or afford the web-based education. As new dimensions of injustices open up, they can only be remedied with an interdisciplinary approach. This approach will not only benefit legal practitioners but also serve useful across other faculties. Professor Mohan further explained the need for an interdisciplinary approach through examples of laws that were rendered futile in addressing the unique social and economic issues arising out of the pandemic. As the pandemic blurred the lines of a stratified society and presented a dis-embedded view of the law, it strengthened the relevance of an interdisciplinary approach towards legal education.

Finally, Professor Sundaran drove home the essence of the debate when she remarked that we shouldn’t let a good crisis go to waste and this seems to be an apt time to rethink the evolution of legal education by devising interdisciplinary frameworks of training future students of the law.

Swasti Gupta is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University. 


Session XVII: Executive And Continuing Legal Education During The Pandemic - Role Of Law Schools & Judicial Institutions

Academia demands rigorous knowledge on current situations happening world-wide and the conference discusses all the issues we can think of about learning process during and after covid. The panel discusses ‘Executive And Continuing Legal Education During The Pandemic - Role Of Law Schools & Judicial Institutions’ major question in front of the panel was how has covid impacted courts rooms and legal education. 

The Panel included Mr. Siddharth Luthra Senior Advocate Supreme Court Of India, India Professor Suzanne Rab, Commercial Law Brunel University London Barrister, Serle Court Chambers, London Law Lecturer, University Of Oxford United Kingdom, Hon’ble Dr. Justice Emmanuel Ugirashebuja , Judge President, East African Court Of Justice Arusha, Tanzania. 

The session was moderated by Professor (Dr.) James J. Nedumpara, Jindal Global Law School O.P. Jindal Global University India  

Prof. James started the conference with how has covid 19 crises changed the legal education process and said that everyone is suffering because of covid but fighting pandemic has taught us how to learn things in an emergency. An online platform has provided all of us great opportunities, like blended courses for professionals who can’t take for regular classes. or online lectures from distinguished professionals. 

On similar lines, Adv. Siddhart Luthra rightly said that the change is huge but still Law firms already have upgraded their working methodology. Imbibing a balance of work from home culture. All the lawyers had to adapt to the electronic courts and electronic handling of documents and use devices effectively. A lot of people need to reinvent themselves, some of the problems that we see is the need for a paralegal is reduced.  Work from home has impacted a lot of support staffs. I totally agree with him, every coin has two sides, with a lot of advantages, covid has innumerable disadvantages as well. 

Justice Emmanuel also added on the same note, while speaking about the working of court, he said when covid came all the courts arrived in an extremely difficult world. We are working in a virtual world. It’s happening. Law schools are easily developing their curriculum. But, it’s hard for courts. However, he, later on, added that covid and challenges will continue. It’s an eye-opener of what can be achieved. I think he has very rightly pointed out that no situation is impossible to handle.  

Lastly, Professor Suzanne added on the same lines, it is important to see growing nexus between the classroom and court of law. She very rightly pointed out the fact that, distance learning was already a thing before covid. A lot of universities in the world were having a distance learning course. Nevertheless, online platforms can ever replicate the experience of physical learning. 

Arushi Bajpai is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.


Session XVIII: Potentialities of the Pandemic: Industry, Professional, and Academic Collaborations

While universities have come up with innovative ways to enhance the experience of virtual education during such a difficult time, this talk highlighted the innovative and transformative ways in which Professionals/Industries and Academic Collaborations have also tried to enhance the education during the pandemic period.  

This blog post is going to be covering the session on Potentialities of the Pandemic: Industry, Professional and Academic Collaborations. The speakers in this session are Professor (Dr.) Ildiko Szegedy Maszak Head, International Relations Law School Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Colombia, Hon’ble Justice Matthew Cooper, Judge, Supreme Court of New York, USA, Mr. Nishith Desai, Founder, Nishith Desai Associates, India, Prof. Jayanth Krishnan, Milt & Judi Stewart Professor of Law Indiana University, USA and Prof. Amnon Lehavi, Dean, Harry Radzyner School of Law Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, Israel.  The moderator for this session is Prof. Gudmundur Eiriksson. Professor Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, India.  

Prof. Gudmundur Eriksson began this session by highlighting the immediate need for collaborations be it Academic, Professional or Industrial as law is area that needs to move quickly. He structured this session into three themes: Effect of COVID on students with regard to their courses and internships, the prospects of graduating students in the immediate future in terms of job placements and lastly, how has COVID affected research.  

Mr. Nishith Desai commented on the situation of student internships in this virtual world. He elaborated on the online internship practice that was started by Nishith Desai 15 years ago; the Wall-Intern Program. Wherein, students are able to continue their internships with the use of technology and engage with the associates. He spoke of the success of this program in a pre-pandemic world with students being able to continue their internships along with their classes. Virtual connection has been able to provide more intimacy and one-on-one attention to the students in a better way than physical contact.  

Justice Matthew Cooper also commented on the situation of interns. He did raise the point that he lost many international students (including students from India) due to the pandemic. These students lost the opportunity to intern at the Supreme Court of Newyork and experience the day-to-day practice of the Supreme Court proceedings and the spontaneity of the everyday.  Having said that J. Matthew was of the opinion that the interns working with him,  still had the opportunity to participate with research, drafting and attending hearings and conferences both at the Appeals and Trial Court.  

Dr.  Idiko commented on the experience of undergraduate students and the relationship they share with their professors. She highlighted the hurdles when it comes to granting students practical knowledge of the subject. Especially not having the physical space to network with the professors. Many professors are practitioners too, so they can provide professional advice to the students regarding jobs and applications. It’s different to approach a professor physically just after class rather than approaching them virtually. Thus, encouraging professors to approach their students. Having said that, she felt that the virtual experience has provided the faculty members to also focus on the emotional development of the students, which is very important.  

Dr. Amnon commented on the students’ online experience. He witnessed how the pandemic has made academicians realize that physical campuses are not obsolete. Students come to campus to be part of a community. While virtual classes are easier for theoretical courses. But with workshops and clinics, students are missing out on the practical experience. This hands-on experience can only be possible when students and faculties interact in a physical space These elements are being missed out in the learning process.  

Dr. Jayanth Krishnan spoke about the impact this has had on the research side. According to him this pandemic has emphasized the disparities between the have and have-nots. Wherein students doing the haves’ research are being able to easily process and continue their research. As they are interacting with people who have the access to technology and the ability to communicate in this virtual world. However, students who are researching the have-nots’ are really suffering since their subjects are people who struggle and are in communities where there is no internet or provision of basic necessities.  

The session ended on a hopeful note, that despite the hurdles and the pros and cons of the legal field. There has been great innovation and creativity in trying to engage and nurture young aspiring law students/lawyers in this virtual pandemic world. In an era of globalization, the world is facing global constraints as a consequence of this pandemic and the need of the hour is to collaborate and come together in order to ease out this process.

Esha Rana is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.


Session XIX: Professional Guilds and Sustenance of Legal Education During the Pandemic

In the present pandemic era, the impact of the novel coronavirus has hit not only our job market but also the education sector, the obvious question of “is this a good time to apply to a law school?’ is asked by many aspiring lawyers. Today’s session our distinguished panellists, namely Professor Archie William Parnel, OP Jindal Law school, India, Professor Lauren Robel, Indiana University, USA, Dr. Kenneth Holland, Dean, Jindal Law School, India who will act as the moderator, Mr. Ritin Rai, senior advocate, Supreme Court of India, Dr. Oscar Vilhena Vieira, School of São Paulo, Brazil,  will give us some food for thought on the topic of ‘Professional Guilds and Sustenance of Legal Education During the Pandemic’

 What role will professional guilds play during the present pandemic?
Professor Lauren Robel begins with addressing that the institutions have provided critical support for students to progress in their career progression via seminars and conferences.

How will the global pandemic affect the economic downfall and loss of jobs and what has the professional guild plan for the challenges? 
Dr. Oscar responds with the pandemic setting new challenges and overlapping the previous challenges, such as an overwhelming number of law graduates and fresh lawyers has been an issue which most nations have been facing regardless of the pandemic.
He believes that accessibility of seminars and enhancing connectivity will allow us to overcome the challenges.

What role can the judicial committees play in crafting work and internships during the pandemic?
Professor Archie goes on to say with Covid 19 amending the landscape of legal education, the law schools have addressed questions such as starting law school during the pandemic? And other pandemic related questions, specifically the impact of recent law graduates, the answers to these questions will help students and graduates battle the uncertainties. 


Many law schools specifically those who have been hit by the pandemic are finding it hard to move online, what will the professional guilds do to take on this challenge?
Prof. Lauren states that "Covid is a fact of life", and ensuring our students continuously move forward is an essential duty of academic programs and faculty. The bar association has done an excellent job when dealing with safe examinations and focusing on the students first step in professional practice. She believes that Covid will be accelerating the nationalization of bar exams and believes they are easier to administer online and in difficult times. Just as easily universities move towards online teaching states are indeed moving towards a unified bar exam. Prof. Archie chimes in and agrees with Prof. Lauren added that there will be more collaborations between law schools and possibly introduce comparative law courses between different jurisdictions, this change will allow different parts of the world to come closer together.
Prof. Lauren goes on to highlight the advantages of advancement in technology.

Dr. Oscar acknowledges the ironic realities that the pandemic has brought forth particularly in terms of how university students and staff have learnt so much during the pandemic, he also mentions that the expenses have been cut down in terms of conferences and other travel expenses which universities would have to bear in the previous years.

Are American law schools helping Law schools which are under immense stress?
The American bar association has worked towards communication via webinars and other knowledgeable material.
Prof. Lauren brings forth the view that the political situation has indeed encouraged students to view law school in a positive light and with law schools facing economic challenges, the new online practice has encouraged participation in professional guilds and have allowed individuals to attend conferences. 

The fiscal aspect has affected the public sector in different ways in comparison to the private sectors. He continues to reiterate that third world countries have always faced challenges such as lack of employment regardless of the pandemic. The level of solidarity which is imposed as it is not only about teaching but also solving problems. Law schools will be better off in the future because they will be pushed to be more democratic and less expensive, their functionality must be pragmatic due to the challenges faced during this pandemic. 

Borders have been closed due to the pandemic, is there an after effect of the closed borders? 
Dr. Oscar positively states that the pandemic will pass however he acknowledges the uncertainties brought by the pandemic. Law schools must provide solutions to the present and upcoming problems. Prof. Lauren agrees and adds that this is a ‘call to action to law schools’ she believes that building global connections is essential during this period because the underlying global problems have not disappeared, and law schools must not blindside the global challenges which pre-exist. 

Have the professional guilds done enough to meet the needs of the lawyers and law students in the present time pandemic?
Prof. Archie believes that they are as an institution being helpful and address the issues and needs of the individuals facing difficulty, although there is always space for more, he and Prof. Lauren agree that the institutions have gone above-and-beyond when dealing with the current pandemic needs.

It is clear from this discussion that the law students and applicants have a good reason to feel unsure about the pandemic and concern for the next several months, however, the generation of lawyers that weathers this storm will have immense work ahead of this dark tunnel. 

 Aneela Fatima is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.  


Session XX: Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice as the Law School Mission

Professor Iheme, kicked off the session on a very important note by highlighting the international commitments the entire global community has made in regard to inclusive education by reiterating the UNESCO Salamanca Statement as well as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of 2013 on inclusive education. He then went on to quote Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen and his theory of “capability approach” in ensuring diversity in higher educational institutions, where equal opportunity is provided by all the members of the society, which respects its diversity and ensures representation from the marginalised sections of the society. Professor Iheme voiced Amartya Sen’s idea that diversity in higher education is the only way to ensuring an equitable society. However, on an unfortunate note, he acknowledged that inequality and discrimination did continue to exist in general in higher education, and in particular in law schools.

This opening statement was equally acknowledged by all the panellists, and in particular by Professor Mark, who stated that the pandemic has already worsened the existing situation of marginalised communities, and also posed a danger to the work done and progress made by higher education institutions to make themselves more inclusive. He also stated that the adverse effects of online/isolation teaching were not equal across the board, and there was an urgent need for institutions to double down to help students from marginalised groups who were facing the heaviest brunt of the pandemic. Professor Khaliq concurred and stated that lack diversity in higher education, in general, was present not only amongst the students, but also amongst the staff, where he recounted his personal experience of being the only faculty from a visible minority group in his own university. He also added that universities, in general, were based on semi-marketized industry models, whose focus on targets, league table rankings etc. itself made the universities exclusionary in nature.

To increase the diversity in their particular institutions, Professor Khaliq shared examples of programmes such as the Widening Participation programme in his university, which was funded by a charity organisation (Sutton Trust) and encouraged students from lower socio-economic backgrounds (which intersected with aspects of the race) to apply to university while getting scholarships. On the aspect of Social Justice initiatives, he highlighted the existence of various units in his university such as Miscarriages of Justice Unit, Pro-Bono Unit, Global Justice Units, which showed his universities committed to the broader issue of social justice. On the other hand, Professor Maher highlighted the aspect of government support such as 30% of the intake of under-represented groups as a major way of ensuring diversity in higher education institutions.

Overall, and to conclude, a lot of other aspects were also discussed by the panellists, such as the adverse impact of distance learning which resulted in next to nil inter-mingling of students, which is also seen as a major way of ensuring diversity amongst students. The adverse impact of work-from home conditions, especially on women, as they are also expected to take care of houses and families, were also discussed. Professor Maher also very importantly highlighted that this also affected female academicians as this resulted in a very reduced time for them to conduct their own personal research. Hence, the importance of having flexibility and recording lectures was discussed as a way to reduce the stress on both students and faculty.

There were also a lot of other important points discussed, which would not be possible to be covered within the scope of the blog. Hence, I would strongly recommend that folks interested in this session should definitely go to the O.P. Jindal Global University YouTube channel, to see and gain from this extremely thought-provoking session.

I hope all of you have thoroughly enjoyed this 2nd day of the global virtual conference. For all the aspiring mooters in law schools, I hope you will be excited for the final day of the conference starting tomorrow morning which will start with discussing in detail the aspects of Teaching Mooting and Advocacy Online. I wish you all a very goodnight.

Arijeet Ghosh is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.  

Session XXI: Teaching Mooting and Advocacy Online

I am Arunima Saraf- Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School where I have been teaching laws governing properties and their commercialisations. It is the third day of the Global Virtual Conference hosted by O. P. Jindal Global University and it was exuberating to receive plenty of positive responses form the panel. The theme of the discussion was ‘Teaching Mooting and Advocacy Online’ and the moderator, Prof. Sarbani Sen, started the discussion with the question that whether the transition from the physical to digital has been a challenge for law schools in the context of mooting. Both, Professor Nick James and Hon’ble Justice Sabrina Mckenna agreed that while it began as an imposition upon all of us alike, the shift to digital has proved to be a blessing. They shared several personal anecdotes from their roles as professor and Hawaii’an Supreme Court judge respectively.

Justice Sabrina, sharing the experiences of the bench, said that holding proceedings online has become an opportunity to collaborate and hear from more judges form several benches that would earlier require wasting a day to just cover the commute.  That being said, she also pointed out that keeping in mind the nature of criminal proceedings, while the online situation might work for minor cases, it cannot be accepted as is in situations where credibility of witnesses is at stake. She related her concern to an example of the right to confrontation under the Hawaii’an law that must be exercised face to face and might lose its essence in an online mode. Accordingly, she shares that the US courts have begun doing physical proceedings in certain indispensable cases with necessary precautions.

Replying to Prof. Sarbani’s question about importance of physical spaces in fundamental legal skills such as mooting, Prof. James commented that people who moot are generally resilient and will be resilient to the absence of physical mooting spaces as well. The only disappointment that they might face is not being able to travel to various jurisdictions but at the same time online mooting has widened participation across jurisdictions. Sharing some experiences of his students he added that once they got past that initial disappointment, they had a plethora of opportunities online, they realized. But he agreed with Justice Mckenna again over the realisation that whatever has happened in courts with certain exceptional cases being taken back to the physical, similar will happen to mooting as well. Important moots only will be conducted face to face. Now it is upon the law schools to figure out which skills will now be necessary for online mooting and otherwise.

Prof. Karan Latayan and Dr. Surat Singh however emphasized more on the skills that this transition has rendered useless and additional set of skills that will be required to take over. Prof. Latayan pointed out that the biggest challenge to be faced is the absence of courtroom theatrics. Connection with the bench, assuring if the panel is with you, actions like the touch of cheek, scratch behind ear, etc. are the gestures that students have been trained to be mindful of. Other dynamics such as time lag, maintaining calm when argument flow is broken, speaker’s time getting cut due to technical glitches, etc. is additional responsibility that need to be taught to the students as well in addition to some fundamental technicalities of digital mooting. This requires reinvention of mooting as an activity, Prof. Latayan suggested. Dr. Singh agreed that it is less about technological training in a digital courtroom but more about a personal training and the qualities competence, communication and connection are supreme.

When question by Prof. Sarbani on the viability of mooting skills acquired in digital mooting in a post-pandemic world, the panelists shared diverse views. While Prof. James was of the opinion that  the ability to communicate effectively and clearly through the internet is something that is going to stay with lawyers for a long time in future; even if not directly advantageous for advocacy. Prof. Latayan shares another perspective that mooting as an activity is not just about speaking but also researching, writing and team work. These skills will never be undermined in all times to come. Other mental battles like outside courtroom tactics to intimidate the opponent, carrying physical legal paraphernalia, etc. have died down. Speaking for the bench, Justice Sabrina replied that the courtroom etiquette will not change while lack of distraction and basics like positioning the camera, etc. are some new skills that need practice by student mooters.

It will be fair to conclude with the remarks that Prof. Sarbani made in the very beginning- that the essence of mooting has not changed despite the transition from the physical to online.

Session XXII: Role Of Regulatory Bodies And Courts During The Pandemic

The distinguished speakers of the session included Prof. (Dr.) Pip Nicholson from University of Melbourne, Australia, Hon’ble Justice Michael Wilson, Supreme Court of Hawaii, Hon’ble Justice Arjan Sikri, International Judge, Singapore, and Prof. (Dr.) V. Vijaykumar from National Law University, Bhopal, India.

The diverse panel deliberated the on role of regulatory bodies and courts during the pandemic, and how efficiently technology is being addressed in the same. The regulatory bodies are responsible for formulating and enforcing laws that protects the citizens and also set the basic standards for general practice. The thematic session was more specifically in the context of law and legal education. Prof. Sudarshan rightly pointed out the interplay between the Indian judiciary and the UGC (regulating body for legal education in India). While listing the role of regulatory bodies, it is important to understand how (if at all) are these regulatory bodies coping with the introduction of technology in all spheres.

Prof. Nicholson clarified how Australia is following a synchronous method of teaching as they record the lectures with the imagination of students being present in the class. She also raised issues of privacy for both teachers and students, which stands to be a common concern among all the panelists who come from diverse backgrounds.

Now that one dialogues about accessibility and technology. Prof. V. Vijaykumaran emphasized the weight on empowering the institutions with technology for equipped hardware for faculty, appropriate bandwidth, etc.  This is one way of addressing the accessibility concerns, but due to multiple other factors, some specifically in Indian context creative methods like sending recorded material in pens drives to students with no internet access being done by NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad.

Having understood the current standpoint in legal education, the panel addressed the question of what ought to be the stance of regulatory bodies in law school’s education. Interestingly both Justice Sikri and Justice Wilson firstly rationalized why the judiciary has a closer relationship with law schools compared to other professional or degree colleges. One of the reasons for the same is that because the judiciary understands the functioning of law schools, and is able to resonate with the concerns of law students, and hence keen on actively answering them. Another reason that Justice Wilson explained was that because the law school curriculum or decision regarding making exam also involves people from marginalized groups, it is effectively a question of justice and the decisions must be taken with that hindsight.

All of the panel concurred on the point made by Justice Sikri that judiciary must respect the wisdom of the of the regulatory bodies, and only decide on matters of procedural fairness and not substantive issues. Prof. Nicholas fittingly said there must trust and transparency in the functioning of the system. Adding to the same, Prof. Vijaykumar recommended that there needs to be a single statutory regulatory for addressing law school concern and this must be made keeping the students, young lawyers and judges in mind for a comprehensive understanding of the issues.

Asmita Singh is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O. P. Jindal Global University, India.

Session XXIII: Role of Law School systems in ensuring the Health and Well-being of Faculty and Students

Good Morning Everyone! I hope all of you have really enjoyed the sessions from the first two days of this conference. This particular session I believe is extremely relevant for Professors and Faculty Members. As an Assistant Lecturer teaching student in this virtual space, the state and well-being of students is important to acknowledge. We should look out for ways to assist and support them I am really looking forward to this talk to get a glimpse of the role we as faculty members can play in ensuring the well-being of students.

This blog is going to be covering the session on, “Role of Law School systems in ensuring the Health and Well-being of Faculty and Students”. The speakers in this session are Professor (Dr.) Keerty Nakray, Professor, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, India, Professor (Dr.) Natalia G. Prisekina, Vice Dean, Fefu School of Law, Far Eastern Federal University, Russia, Professor (Dr.) Fiona Rohde Deputy Dean (Academic) Tc Beirne School of Law, The University of Queensland Australia and Professor (Dr.) Ade Maman Suherman, Dean Faculty of Law, Jenderal Soedirman University Indonesia. The Moderator of This Session Is Professor (Dr.) Sanjeev P. Sahni Principal Director, Jindal Institute of Behavioural Sciences (JIBS) & Advisor to The Vice Chancellor O.P. Jindal Global University India.

Dr. Sanjeev Sahni introduced this session by discussing the critical impact COVID has had on mental health issues.  With schools/universities shifting to the digital platform, which has been successful to some extent. The impact this has had on students in terms of increased stress and digital addiction is drastic. Also, with some student who don’t have access to basic facilities such as internet are hugely disadvantaged. 

Dr. Sahni then raised two imperative questions giving everyone in the panel an opportunity to respond:

Firstly, the Role of deans and leaders in creating a virtual ecosystem to ensure that student resilience improves during the pandemic. Secondly, overcoming the stigma of counselling.

Dr. Natalia spoke about the massive changes in the political, legal and socio-economic situation in many countries as a consequence of this pandemic. Speaking of Russian Universities, adapting to a certain level has been a problem. Russia at the moment is replying on a Hybrid Learning model which focusses on combining online and physical learning. Secondly, communicating with the student is key. By regularly asking them for feedback regarding their constraints and difficulties in the learning process. The lines of communication, according to her are more accessible now with faculty members being available online rather than relying on their physical office hours. With regard to stigma, Prof. Natalia spoke about open communication with family, friends and faculty members. She has also incorporated the first few mins of her lectures to check in with students.

Dr. Fiona discussed the approach taken by Universities in Australia when it comes to handling mental health issues. The need of the house is a well-entrenched wellness program. She also stressed on the need to organise weekly meetings with faculty members and members of the wellness program making them aware of the possible mental health concerns. She also stressed on involving the students in a more proactive way. At her university, they encouraged students to make videos regarding online classes and how to deal with COVID.  With regard to online counselling, Dr. Fiona did face a difficulty in identifying students who are troubled or need help. As a response to that, they have begun training the students with a first aid workshop for mental health.

Dr. Keerty discussed the influence of domestic factors such as abuse and violence, etc. in the context of India. Due to the stigma, there is difficulty to access assistance with helplines. Students are undergoing domestic violence and aggravation of mental health issues at home. As a faculty member she has encouraged students with the in-house counselling services at the university. She has also organised workshops on communicating with parents and family. In Jindal for instance the peer support system is very successful. Communication and skill development are key in these instances. Due to the lack of good mental health facilities in India.  On the point of stigma, Dr. Keerty spoke about the need for a university safe space. She has tried creating a network of students and peer support. Faculty members have also made the university aware of some students. Incorporation of helpline numbers and online counselling in the course manual has been another way to overcome this stigma. 

Dr. Ade Mamman highlighted some challenged in Indonesia and the difficulties they faced in moving to the digital space. The diversity of the students’ economic condition is a factor that has largely affected students access to technology and learning. Encouraging and involving students is extremely imperative in order to keep them positive and hopeful.  We invite them to international conferences and involve them in agendas. Indonesia has also adopted the Hybrid Learning system and is slowly integrating physical learning in small groups.

The session concluded by highting the importance of keeping the gates of communication open between student and the institution. Faculty members as well can play a very proactive role by constantly checking in with the students and their well-being and ensuring regular contact with the students.

Esha Rana is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O. P. Jindal Global University, India.

Session XXIV: Reimagining and Transforming the Future of Law Schools and Legal Education

Good morning to all our readers. As we are nearing the end of our Global Virtual Conference on “Reimagining and Transforming the Future of Law Schools and Legal Education” organised by Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, we continue to have a stimulating line-up of topics for our discussions today.

I am Auroshikha Deka – Assistant Lecturer of Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University shall be handling the blog on Legally India for our 24th session on “Law School Leadership, Institutional Resilience and Policy Innovations.” The session will be moderated by Professor (Dr.) Mathew John – Professor, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University. Our distinguished panel of speakers on this session are Professor (Dr.) Robert Cunningham – Dean and Head, Curtin Law School, Curtin University, Australia, Professor Bryan Horrigan – Professor and Dean, Faculty of Law, Monash University, Australia, Professor (Dr.) Penelope Elise Mathew – Dean, Faculty of Law, The University of Auckland, New Zealand, Professor Marc L. Miller – Dean, Faculty of Law, University of Arizona, United States of America and Professor (Dr.) Srikrishna Deva Rao – Vice Chancellor, National Law University, Delhi, India.   

The session brought focus to the various challenges faced by institutions during the pandemic along with their successes and how it will take shape in a post-pandemic world.

Belonging to the same community, every institution had their own set of challenges and it is indeed important to share this experience in order to be able to stand on a strong ground together. The most important of all would be the psychological challenges that affected all of us equally. As Professor (Dr.) Penelope Elise Mathew forwarded that we cannot underestimate the impact this pandemic has on the mental health of the younger generation and the faculty members. There has been a digital divide and other issues of inequality which every leader has to take into consideration while managing an institution that was forced to quickly shift from a traditional environment to a virtual one.

A law school has always been looked through its architectural and intellectual infrastructure. However, the view is going to change ever since the pandemic took over and will mostly focus on the management’s investment and administration of the IT infrastructure along with the emotional infrastructure. It is important to build a sense of connectivity and inter-relatedness. As leaders, we have to consider it absolutely vital to be able to empathise every single member’s position psychologically and emotionally.

We can all agree that we are not in a post-pandemic world yet. We are still fighting against it and we shall continue to do so for at least a couple of years now. As easy as it is for the entire system to go online, it equally difficult to empathise and consider how this has ultimately affected on the students and the staff. Every single person belongs to a different family background. The digital divide amongst students and faculty alone is challenging. At the same time, the domestic situations of every individual at their homes might be equally challenging especially for the faculties. The entire community was trying to find some certainty and clear communication and it is the duty of every leader to be able to give that to everyone who is a part of their institution. An important point that was put forward by Professor (Dr.) Srikrishna Deva Rao was the preparation of a strong IT infrastructure which ultimately helped the institution at a time like this. This will eventually help us further in facing similar challenges in the future.

There have been different kinds of adjustments, some temporary while others permanent in nature. To be resilient as an institution, we have to definitely consider the challenges that we will face as a community but most importantly, we have to be able to empathise. The ability to empathise will help us come out as more resilient and indestructible as members of the legal education community.  

Session XXV: The Webinar Revolution in Legal Education & Legal Profession

“Teachers can change lives by chalk and challenges” couldn’t have been used more appropriately other than for a time like this. Till this pandemic lasts, physical presence – be it in classes or in court rooms seems like a distant reality, well at least, till the time we receive effective vaccination. Little did we get a chance before this pandemic to explore the avenue of online education and learning.

There is no doubt that online cannot be a substitute for offline, but it just amazes me as to how much we can do with technology, that is supplemented by innovative ideas – ideas to make virtual classes and courts feel like normal.

This engrossing session, which was moderated by Professor Jasmeet Gulati (Jindal Global Law School), comprised of panellists Ms. Payel Chatterjee (Nishith Desai Associates), Professor Judith Mcnamara (Queensland University of Technology), and Professor Rashmi Raman (Jindal Global Law School), discussed about how the webinar revolution has changed the face of legal education and legal profession.

Initiating the discussion, Professor Gulati mentions about the likes of MS Teams, Zoom and how they have brought in a learning revolution all over the world. Digital space has become new agora’s around the world to share information. Not only education, but it has been helpful for law firms, companies, and other businesses in helping them continue their daily pursuits with dynamism. However, she raises a concern of information overload due to such platforms.

Responding to the concern, Ms. Chatterjee agrees with the use of the term. With inboxes being spammed with invitations, she stresses on the role of faculties or organisers and the need to bifurcate what is meant for the student’s and their intake and what is not. This would give them an ideal opportunity to quality learning from distinguished personalities across the world, without missing. Very rightly, she compared it to the traditional times where students had one faculty taking sessions all over the semester vis-à-vis times like these, where the student has access to views of panelists from different jurisdictions. She further asserted the need to create a balance between what is right for them and what is not – because too much of them and they will stop attending them.

Talking on similar lines, Professor Raman talks about intimacy and engagement that is lacking in this revolution. Comparing it to the physical classes/conferences, even though the current state allows students to focus much more on the content, she feels that students, as well as the faculty, are just in their own spaces – talking to themselves – they don’t feed in the energy of others, there is lack of engagement. To some, it even feels that they are out of the discussion.

Interestingly, Professor McNamara points out that while there are concerns, a research survey showed that some students were very happy with webinars as they their learning process. While some students were still developing confidence, they were afraid of raising their hands in physical classrooms and rather preferred posting their questions on chat. Moreover, it is now possible for a faculty to be present in 5 different countries in a single day and learn about their online experiences and more.

More so, as Ms. Chatterjee mentions, we are all faculties as well as students in this process. What this pandemic and the webinar revolution has brought to us is a chance to learn more about the different jurisdictions, the practical experiences of practitioners/ faculties all over the world, which is exciting.

I would like to thank Jindal Global Law School for organising this extremely intriguing session, which makes me embrace the current situation, and look forward to more experiences.

Kanishk Rai is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University.

Session XXVI: Resource maximisation through Digital inter-linking of Law Libraries

The 3rd day of the Conference hosted the 26th thematic session on ‘Resource maximisation through Digital inter-linking of Law Libraries’ had a panel of distinguished speakers - Dr. Jagdish Arora, Former Director, Information and Library Network Centre (INFLIBNET), University Grants Commission, India, Mr. Buddhi Prakash Chauhan, Director, Global Library, OP Jindal Global University, India, Professor (Dr.) Achilles Emilianides, Dean, School of Law, University of Nicosia, Cyprus and Professor Astrid Zei, Associate Professor, Faculty of Law, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy. The session was moderated by Professor (Dr.) Deblina Dey, Associate Professor & Assistant Dean (Student Affairs), Jindal Global Law School, OP Jindal Global University, India.

The session highlighted the importance of sharing knowledge especially the universities and societies having learning resources. These institutions have a burden to share their resources and digitise them when it is impossible for people to physically visit them. Prof. Deblina made a point with her questions that this pandemic has disabled us to perform legal researches and learning processes in the classrooms. She asked the esteemed panelists about the problems they had faced in their institutions on knowledge sharing and how were they able to overcome them.

Across the globe, we are facing a pandemic that has hindered classroom learning and legal research. Prof. Achilles pointed out that legal teaching and research are unique from other subjects because of its dependence on national resources than transnational. Thus, it is necessary in his view for national universities to digitise their library resources and share them. He informed us that Cyprus is doing this and now it is targeting to expand its resources from other Universities of the European Union. Prof. Astrid cited the example of funding of 10 million euros by the German Government on the digitisation of the library resources. She favours digitisation and making them available as open access for engaging classroom teaching and even the students coming from deprived backgrounds have the access to library resources. Dr. Jagdish cited the example of Jindal Global University sharing its resources and make available on EPG Pathshala as he believes that learning resources are not limited to books and journals. 

The panel also discussed the problems that can occur with inter-linking of libraries while sharing the digitised resources. Dr. Jagdish shared his insight on the different requirements of different libraries. The bigger libraries have large requirements and they do not gain as much as smaller libraries while sharing resources. Mr. Buddhi Prakash pointed out that many resources are only available in printed forms like Parliamentary debates in India that are needed to be digitised and shared with other libraries.

The speakers come from different geographical regions of the world that made this discussion a balanced one. The speakers from Europe told us about the forthcoming projects of the European Commission to fund for the digitisation of learning resources which would help to narrow down the socio-economic gaps between the students and researchers. The Indian speakers shared examples of public libraries of large Indian Universities which can make their resources available to small libraries and use technology innovatively like JGU with MS Teams. They want to encourage more academics and researchers to share their work freely with libraries.

Shilpa Singh Jaswant, Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, OP Jindal Global University.

Session XXVII: Placements and Recruitments against uncertain Industry Conditions

 With changing nature and cutting down of jobs because of Covid-19, this entire situation has also presented an opportunity to think about future of jobs. The main question raised is how can the legal industry and law school respond better in this situation? Especially with respect to legal profession this is even more important because access to justice has become increasingly demanding in this situation.

To discuss the very issue of world of opportunities and recruitment in the legal profession, the panel of  Barrister (Dr.) Khaled Hamid Chowdhury, Head London College of Legal Studies (South) Bangladesh, Professor Erik Vermeulen, Tilburg Law School, The Netherlands, Mr. Shreeyash U. Lalit, Advocate, Supreme Court of India, Professor (Dr.) Lisa Webley, Chair in Legal Education and Research Head, Birmingham Law School, University of Birmingham, United Kingdom and Professor (Dr.) Vesselin Popovski, Vice Dean, Jindal Global Law University, India as Moderator have come together to discuss and shed some insight during these tough times.

This discussion witnessed a very stimulating dialogue between speakers with respect to lawyers, academicians, law firms and companies all across Bangladesh, India, Netherlands and United Kingdom in light of granting opportunities during Covid-19.

Moderator Professor Vesselin Popvski started the discussion by stating how Artifical Intelligence and technology are changing the recruitment scenario and how the increased involvement of technology has been a boon during the pandemic. He posed the question of what has been the overall impression of pandemic on legal industry and recruitment in particular to the distinguished speakers.

Professor Khaled Chowdhury very succinctly gave an overview of existing conditions of legal profession in Bangladesh. Professor informed us that many people who are not used to technology nor people who have access to technology have been most affected. Pandemic has resulted in massive loss of jobs and income for lawyers. The fact that young advocates have been unable to take the otherwise infrequent bar exam has not helped their case either. He further primed us of the fact that out of  104 Universities in Bangladesh- private universities were able to promptly adopt technology and help their students as opposed to the public universities because of their lack of budget and infrastructure. This has created an unwitting discrimination amongst students in a case which did not involve their fault at fault. The challenge would be now to deal with this discrimination post pandemic.

Now as far as India is concerned, Advocate Shreeyash Lalit very articulately discussed the scenario of legal profession during present pandemic. Mr. Lalit informed us that since businesses have been hit which has led to reduced profits and receivables- it has induced a general sense of lethargy in clients which has in turn led to fewer clients for lawyers. While commercial side of litigation has had its run ins with breached contracts, loss of revenue, criminal side of litigation has seen Supreme Court stepping in and trying to prevent liberty. High Courts across the country have issued high level committee orders- which formulated parameters to guide how and when interim bail shall be granted to undertrial prisoners, especially with the increase in Covid-19 cases. Supreme Court and High Courts have tried to mitigate the problems faced by accused persons and the Bail jurisprudence has witnessed a dynamic shift during these times.

Professor Erik Vermeulen had a similar story where the students got job offers but many of which fell through cause of the pandemic. The uncertainty of the entire situation made students struggle a lot. However, universities  acted fast and everything was digitized very quickly. In spite of the pandemic being in the equation,  lawyers are extremely busy because of the changed way of working. Business also needed help because contracts couldn’t be performed. However, Notwithstanding the work load, students and graduates are finding it tough to land a job. The good news though is that with slow understanding of the pandemic and creating ways and means to work during this, more and more internships have been created. Professor Vermeulen very aptly said there is a need to rethink everything. Especially communication method with clients and businesses.

Coming to the conditions in UK, Professor Lisa Webley of University of Birmingham had a slightly different and positive story to tell. She discussed the Furlough scheme which was introduced by the government to support people during these times. She informed us that UK Government introduced this scheme to support salaries if 20% of salaries could be paid by Law firms, rest would be paid by Furlough. There was an astonishing discovery that more students were offered the opportunities because of increased workload due to massive digitization process. However, like she rightly said, issue will come when furlough support drops in 2021 and Law firms, chambers and companies will face a slight shift in their safety net. She also discussed one very important aspect- psychological wellbeing of law students and how it is tricky because of uncertain future these days and how, universities must provide as much support to their students as they can.

Moderator, Professor Popopvski posed an extremely interest question about internship banks with law firms, lawyers, and companies and if they would help in better recruitment and perhaps will increase possibility of hybrid recruitment? To which Professor Webley gave an example of how their university has a tie up with Accenture and how students are very likely to benefit with this relationship.

Being a young academic and a lawyer, the concerns discussed during this session felt extremely real and important. The most valuable takeaway from this discussion was the need to rethink the whole legal profession and education aspect where students are not only taught to become lawyers but also an asset which could help in co-designing and developing the world for a better future.

Shreya Shreekant, Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, OP Jindal Global University. 

Session XXVIII: Women Leadership in legal profession

The conference, reimaging and transforming the future of law schools and legal education, has been was brilliantly organized with a great learning outcome.

The session was about “Women leadership in legal profession”. The esteemed panel included Professor Sandhya Drew, Senior Lecturer & Assistant Dean (international students & exchanges) the City Law School, City University of London, Ms. Pratibha Jain, Partner & Head, New Delhi office, Nishith Desai Associates, India, Professor (Dr.) Ved Kumari, Former Dean & Head Faculty of Law, University of Delhi, India, Ms. Raveena Sethia, Associate, Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas, India.

The session was moderated by Professor Dipika Jain, Vice Dean, Jindal Global Law School, India.

Professor Dipika began the session by asking the views of the speaker on women leadership in law school and judiciary. Professor Dr. Ved Kumari, stressed on the fact that discrimination still exists and there is need for systematic change. She stated how there is change in the situation but the change is very slow, women in power and in leadership role are there because of their hardwork and individual opportunity not because there is a systematic change in society to encourage women. Professor Sandhya Drew, shared her journey and stated how she did not face any adversity/challenge with respect to breaking the glass ceiling. However, she did put forward a very important and interesting point about how women of every age face discrimination/ill treatment/harassment; being subject to eve-teasing, sexual/mental harassment (generally, when young), middle aged women subjected with longer working works, pressure to start a family and then balance between work and family and later sometimes made to choose between work and family, whereas older women face invisibility, lower standard of pay. She further spoke about how women at every stage of her life are put through these barriers. This was one of the most important point raised, addressed and answered by the panelist in this session. While concluding this point she said “it’s not about women in law but with involving women in law, we evolve the law”.

Ms. Pratibha Jain, shared her experience in the corporate law sector, put forward the view about how the law firms paved way for women more equally than any other profession. Regarding the Discrimination, she is of the view that, it must be addressed and taught in the law schools at a very young age and early in the profession. Ms. Pratibha is of the view that situation will be easier for the women who will be coming after us, as the current generation is active and aware about the issue of discrimination and is fighting against it. Ms. Raveena Sethia put forward her view by partially agreeing with Professor Drew and Ms. Pratibha, and further threw light on how in law firms women face the “imposter syndrome”. They fear not being heard and their work not receiving recognition. However, she shared an experience from her current firm, where a female is heading the Mental Health Centre, dealing with burn outs and mental health issues, she went on by saying how peoples’ view change by seeing women at a position of power. She concluded this point by stating how people around her do not ask her anymore about how long she is going to work in the industry. Change is happening, recognition is positive, but it needs to catch the pace, she stated. I must agree with what Ms. Raveena has put on the table, people now do not doubt the potential of a woman when they see her at a leadership position, but there is a need for more women to be at a leadership position.

Prof. Dr. Ved Kumari, discussed the sexual harassment faced by females during internships and job making the entire office place and profession uncomfortable for them. She again stressed on the point as to how women are at a position of responsibility and leadership because of their individual hardwork and family support and not because the society supports them. She further insisted the mindset of the people needs to change about what is happening in the society around us. On being asked about the role of law schools to enable women leadership, Professor Ved Kumari is of the view that legal education should revamp itself, curriculum should change to make students understand about discrimination, equality and justice. The professors must be inclusive and sensitive towards giving equal participation to both, male and female students. Whereas Professor Sandhya Drew was of the view that law school should teach students two things: confidence and cunning, to prepare them for the real world and students must be trained to face challenges.

Ms. Prathiba, on being asked about her challenges and working experience in different jurisdiction, spoke about unconscious biases and how law schools should focus on removing these unconscious biases. Professor Dipika further added to discussion by saying that things get better when women are in power, and I totally agree on this point.

Ms. Raveena spoke about how university play a huge role in shaping the student. She further spoke about her experience at Jindal Law School (when she was a student at the University) and that the female professor at Jindal helped her get over the unconscious biases and taught her to look past the biases and discrimination.

Towards the end of the session, Professor Dr. C Raj Kumar shared how O.P. Jindal Global University consciously took steps of including women at leadership position.

This entire session was not only of great importance but also helped me understand the situation in society from the view from of our experienced panelists.

Manya Pundhir is a Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University    

Session XXIX: Financial Stability and Sustainability of Law Schools During the Pandemic

The Pandemic has affected economies all over the world including, the Indian economy which experienced 24% contraction in the first quarter (April – June 2020) of the financial year. Universities being at the receiving end suffered financially and went into insolvency because of the impact on disposable income and propensity to spend. The panel for the 29th session, discussing the financial stability of law schools in the current times, comprised of professors and administrators from Croatia, Germany, India and United Kingdom. They brought to the table varied experiences about financially sustaining law schools during a crisis.

Professor (Dr.) Aashita Dawer, the moderator for the session, posed some pertinent questions to the panel and inquired about the crisis management, the universities had to undertake, to confront the pandemic; the effect on the admission process; financial aids for students and the role of government in sustaining law schools.

Professor (Dr.) Vesna Crnić-Grotić Dean Faculty of Law University of Rijeka, came from a state-run university and informed the viewers about the per capita financing and scholarships provided by the state. The Croatian institution invested their resources in EU funded projects to fund for their legal technological infrastructure. She also mentioned how the university during their first lockdown allowed the students to borrow equipment and paid for their internet connection bills to help them adjust to the online mode of learning.

Professor (Dr.) Jan Von Hein Dean Faculty of Law, Albert-Ludwigs-Universitaet Freiburg, also mentioned that most universities are state government funded and that there is no tuition fee required for students unless they are foreign nationals who often get scholarships. Therefore, they do not rely tuition fees for their financial stability. There were aadditional costs associated with the pandemic in buying laptops for their staffs for example because of strong data protection regulations as private Laptops could not be used to access data. The faculty budgets were initially cut but they were later paid out. Therefore, there was some financial impact but it was eventually stabilized.

Professor (Dr.) Robin Hickey Head of School of Law Queen's University Belfast, shared a similar experience and informed the viewer’s about how the university had to look towards state sponsored loans and government aids. They also incurred additional costs for student support and online library services. In Belfast, to deal with the sudden move to online mode learning, the university buildings and study spaced were made accessible to students (keeping in mind the social distancing norms) so that they have access to the internet and the right equipment. The admission process did get affected as the students could take a virtual tour of the campus but it couldn’t be substituted with the actual visits by them.

Professor Anand Prakash Mishra director Law Admissions, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, shared the Indian perspective and highlighted the far-sighted approach of the University administration in reacting to the crisis well in time, by moving the classrooms and the admission process online. Jindal University was one of the first few law schools to start the classes from 1st September 2020 and was therefore not adversely affected by the pandemic. No salaries were cut or jobs were lost and the university has been able to sail through the crisis without getting adversely affected by it.

The session was concluded with a discussion on how the institutions need to be compassionate about their support staff who are the backbone of any organization and happen to be daily wage earners. Universities paying a key role as economic drivers must support them and understand that post pandemic, they will be required to run the institutions again. With this Professor Mishra ended the session by suggesting how the government can create a COVID relief fund and the Corporate Social Responsibility funds by different corporates in India can be directed towards ensuring financial stability of various institutions in the country.

Medhavi Singh is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal University.

Session XXX: Role of Legal Aid Clinics during and after the Pandemic

A very good evening to all of you. My name is Pankhudi Khandelwal and I am a Lecturer here at Jindal Global University. As has been discussed in the previous sessions, the pandemic has created new challenges for almost everyone. The need for legal aid is felt now more than ever. After having heard the effect of the new circumstances on law schools around the world, I was very eager to know about what the role of legal aid clinics could be during and after the pandemic from the diverse panel of Professor Jenny Chapman, Nottingham Law School, UK, Professor (Dr.) Avinash Govindjee, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa and Professor (Dr.) N. S. Nigam, BML Munjal University, India. The session was moderated by Professor Ajay Kumar Pandey who is the Executive Director of Clinical Programmes in Jindal Global University.

The session started with Professor Ajay giving an introduction to the theme and emphasised the issues and challenges with respect to clinical education during the lockdown such as restrictions on mobility, increase in the cases of child abuse and domestic violence. Many law schools have continued clinical legal education through online methods. Apart from finding new ways and means, consideration needs to be given to legal ethics. Certain questions that arise are how covid19 affected various law schools and how the law schools of panellists have coped with the same and continued to provide legal aid?

Professor Jenny Chapman said that Nottingham Law School’s model of legal aid clinic has achieved significantly by helping the communities in getting compensation and has also helped the students in gaining legal experience. This has continued during the pandemic as well.

Professor Avinash said that the Nelson Mandela University has played an increasing crucial role in assisting communities in numerous ways. He stressed on the importance of collaboration for legal aid not just with former legal system such as courts but also with the profession. In order to achieve better outcomes, we need meaningful integration with the profession. The type of collaboration has to come from the network of clinics with courts and increasing role of mediation. Collaboration has to come from the law firms as well which are the institutions with economic resources which can be used to digitalise the services of legal clinics.

Professor Nigam talked about the objectives of the Indian legal system. All law schools in India have three objectives with respect to legal aid clinics (1) access to justice (2) help vulnerable parts of the population such as domestic violence, sexual violence against children, poverty related crimes etc. (3) empathy among law students. Legal aid clinics are meant to teach students to empathise with other members of the communities.

Professor Jenny Chapman also stressed the point on collaboration with law firms to provide pro bono work and also other charitable organisations to provide more holistic development of the service. Professor Ajay then brought the point of use of technology after the pandemic to expand the scope of legal aid. Professor Chapman stated that after covid19, the legal aid services were shifted to online mode which ensured outreach which makes it more inclusive and flexible since advice can be given through telephone or online. However, while carrying the legal aid online, it is necessary to maintain the confidentiality of the clients. It has allowed the students to intern online with the legal aid clinic as well.

Session XXXI: Sustaining International Collaborations for Achieving Best Outcomes

The distinguished speakers of the session included Prof. M.P. Singh, Prof. Kalyani Unkule from O. P. Jindal Global University, India, Prof. Robert B Ahdieh from Texas A&M University, USA, Prof. Mohammed A. AL-Khulaifi From College of Law, Qatar University, Qatar and Prof. Kevin R. Johnson, University of California, Davis, USA.

There is no aspect of human life that has been left untouched by pandemic we are currently witnessing. As academicians we have seen the greatest and the rapidest change in the approach towards learning and teaching. Undoubtedly it has once again brought to the surface the disparities of the society, but on the other end of the spectrum are much more international collaborations. The attitude toward collaborative learning has grown even stronger during the pandemic time.

As Prof. Unkule pointed out during the discussion, there had been shades of opinion on use of technology in the panel. There were thoughts that encouraged the use of technology for international collaborations whilst Prof. Ahdieh emphasized on creating a personal association and the significance of human interaction. Most universities today have been the largest supporters of International collaborations. The model of the international language fosters greatly on research through international collaborations, in addition to student collaboration.

The main challenge the pandemic has generated is mobility and physical exchange of ideas. There have been different ways in which the Universities have been able to confront these concerns; namely through conferences, research collaboration and the Global Virtual conference as organized by Jindal Global University is the leading model of successfully overcoming the challenge. Pandemic has allowed universities to congregate researchers and scholars from across the countries to collect data for collaborative studies with much easiness. Online programs are one of the innovative ways to retain the international collaboration. This has made stakeholders in legal education receptive to technology and innovative ways to teach, making international collaborations facile. Dean Jonshon accurately said pandemic and uncertainty have forced the world to engage in a new and a different way of institutionalization and collaboration.  

As Prof. Mohammad said international associations are umbrella organizations and critical in enriching the international collaboration among the universities. Lastly Prof. Robert, pointed to the panel the idea of “Glocal”. The nature of Pandemic brings us all to that point: the idea of nexus between the Global and the Micro level is the representative of our existence. Technology provides no barrier and does not restrict scholars to one place.

The conference has been an inordinate learning opportunity of all the participants as it is a living example of how international collaborations can be brought to life with shared efforts. The conference is a great example of not only allowed not just global institutional collaborations but also intra institutional collaborations. Law is a dynamic and so should be the methodology of teaching law. The impact of the pandemic on human life, economy, and market is ruthless but as academicians we must find the silver lining in the darkest hours, and innovate our teaching learning skills individually and intuitionally for the students around the globe.

Tanya Goyal is an Assistant Lecturer at Jindal Global Law School, O. P. Jindal Global University, India.

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