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Qatar to establish graduate law school

Harvard Law School to assist Doha with world-class legal institute

  • By Habib Toumi, Bureau Chief
  • Published: 12:34 July 29, 2012
  • Gulf News

Manama: The Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development will support a project to establish a world-class graduate law school in Qatar.

The project with Harvard Law School’s (HLS) Institute for Global Law and Policy (IGLP), is part of an initiative of Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) to establish a law school with three integrated pillars — a doctoral programme, a research institute, and a faculty development programme.

Under the terms of the arrangement, Qatar Foundation will support HLS and IGLP initiatives to extend their reach for legal education across the world. As part of the collaboration, IGLP will provide advice and expertise to Qatar Foundation as it seeks to establish a law school in Qatar, a world-class graduate legal institute. IGLP will offer advice in the development of the law school’s academic programme, admissions policy, and exchange of academic and administrative know-how, the foundation said in a statement.

At present, IGLP runs a yearly workshop at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The project will be replicated in Qatar, allowing young scholars of law and policy from around the world to convene for discussions in Doha on an annual basis.

The first of the workshops is scheduled for January 4-14, 2013 and will provide opportunities for concentrated collaboration between both faculties and researchers, with a focus on areas of specific interest to the Middle East. The workshops aim to improve scholarly networks for participants within the Arab and Islamic worlds by connecting them with their international peers. This ambition represents a key element of Qatar Foundation’s mission to broaden the knowledge base of Qatar, the region, and the world.

“We are delighted to announce this collaboration with one of Harvard Law School’s elite institutes,” Mohammad Fathy Saoud, Qatar Foundation President, said. “Qatar Foundation’s mission to unlock human potential resonates with the stated aims of the Institute for Global Law and Policy to foster innovation and policy dialogue so as to address pressing issues of global policy. I am confident that, by working closely together, both Qatar Foundation and Harvard can achieve their shared vision. At the heart of this cooperation is Qatar Foundation’s vision to establish a centre of learning that will help revitalise legal education in the Middle East, and represent Islamic and Arabic legal traditions in the global dialogue on legal and governance issues.”

Abdullah bin Ali Al Thani, President of HBKU and Vice President of Education at Qatar Foundation, said that the collaboration strengthened Qatar Foundation’s growing reputation as a world-leading educational establishment.

“I welcome this valuable partnership with Harvard Law School’s Institute for Global Law and Policy,” he said. “Our mission is to establish a distinguished and world-class law school in Qatar. By working closely with one of Harvard Law School’s elite institutes, we are confident that we will achieve our goal and cultivate a strong legal education in Qatar. We look forward to this collaboration and to offering researchers and academics within Qatar and across the region the opportunity to benefit from Harvard’s extensive knowledge and expertise in this field.”

Representatives from Harvard Law School and the Institute for Global Law and Policy expressed their enthusiasm for this new collaboration with the Foundation.

For Harvard Law School Professor and IGLP Director David Kennedy, advising Qatar Foundation as it develops its plans to build a world class law school in Qatar is “an honour.”

“Our own faculty development initiative, to be launched this year, will become a strong component in that broader effort and strengthen education in law and policy both in Qatar and the Arab region and beyond,” he said. “Indeed, we see strong prospects for helping Qatar become a hub for convening young scholars and supporting faculty development and research.”

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