Opportunities: Justice Education
Times of Crises
We face unprecedented multiple challenges, the most prominent being linked to the ongoing health crisis. The pandemic has changed our day to day lives, breaking down routines and well-established paradigms. It has forced educators and students around the world to rapidly transition from in-person instruction to distance learning, with little time to prepare for this shift.
In the midst of this health crisis we face other severe crises linked to climate change and to economic, social and political instabilities everywhere. The recent past has been characterised by environmental disorder, conflict, displacement, growing economic insecurity and austerity. Increasing social polarisation has meant that contemporary societies are becoming more unequal. These crises threaten to overturn well-established theoretical frameworks, approaches and categories, which also deeply affects education and the production of knowledge. This upheaval both challenges us and presents opportunities for rethinking approaches to education.
Clinical Legal Education and more generally Justice Education, has always demonstrated its potential to confront crucial practical legal problems societies face and to find innovative responses to them. Many of these legal education programs have enhanced social justice worldwide in many different ways, both directly and through the emphasis on socially relevant legal education.
This conference, organised in partnership between the Global Alliance for Justice Education, the International Journal of Clinical Legal Education and the Association for Canadian Clinical Legal Education, will provide a platform to discuss the current challenges, the extent to which they can be turned into opportunities and practical ways forward. It offers – albeit virtually – an important forum for connecting with and being inspired by a broad diversity of legal justice educators from all over the world. It provides a unique platform for sharing innovative approaches and research on educational methods promoting students’ engagement, diversity and social justice.