Peter L. Murray and Jens DrolshammerThe Education and Training of a New International Lawyer

2.14 Peter L. Murray /Jens Drolshammer , The Education and Training of a New International Lawyer, in the Internationalization of the Practice of Law, Jens Drolshammer/Michael Pfeifer ed., The Hague, London/Boston, 2001, p. 289-328

a) Background

The text at hand is a scholarly article written as a joint venture among personal and professional friends with a similar professional record and experience. Peter Murray and Jens Drolshammer have worked together at Harvard Law School as well as at St. Gallen University with both originally having been exclusively practitioners in the international practice of law. In that sense the text is bottom-up, issue-driven, practice and experience-based and contains a forward-looking agenda. The text has appeared in a book, conceived and co-edited by Jens Drolshammer, The Internationalization of the Practice of Law (2001), in which practitioners and academics from all over the world have contributed  on the topic of the internationalization of the practice of law. The text partially is reflected in and related to Jens Drolshammer’s book The Effects of Globalization on Legal Education (2003), which outlines an agenda for conceptualizing the “new international lawyer”. Murray and Drolshammer’s text is similar to the text of Thomas Cottier, which also addresses the challenges of globalization for law and for legal education. The specific link to Switzerland of the text, among others is the link to the pioneering Executive Masters program in European and International Business Law at the University of St. Gallen and the Masters of International Law and Economics Program at the World Trade Institute at the University of Bern. The Swiss scene is an interesting one to observe in connection with the internationalization of education in law and in business. In observing, analyzing, reconfiguring, and reconstructing legal education in times of globalization, one wonders about the relevance of sayings such as – “From knowledge to activity: “Freestyle” for the Few or an “Obligation” for All Time?”. In the context of effects and impacts on Swiss culture on the legal process of globalization, these programs have to be counted as contributions to the legal process of globalization by Swiss educators and in particular to non-Swiss lawyers,  participating as students in those programs.

b) Summary

The Education and Training of a New International Lawyer is rooted in the authors’ years of experience in private practice and in teaching at law schools on international matters. As a contribution to the effects of globalization on law and legal professionals, it focuses primarily on the international practice of law. The text is descriptive and prescriptive containing an agenda for a reconstruction of legal education in view of globalization.  It describes the growth of the international law practice from a transatlantic perspective. It then describes functions and challenges of the lawyer in international practice and specifically addresses key questions of educational pursuit: What should an international lawyer in international practice know? It then gives an overview over forms of existing education and training for international law practice. It finally deals, from an agenda oriented perspective, with the question of how we might better educate and train lawyers for the international practice of law.

The text particularly focuses on postgraduate education and training for international law practice, an area in which Switzerland was remarkably creative and active from an early stage. The text ends with considerations on Creating a Culture of International Law Practice and ends with a provocative suggestion, “As lawyers look to the new millennium, we look at a very small world which will have to be governed by law or will relapse into chaos. Our ability to transcend national boundaries, languages, cultures and prejudices to provide a legal framework, which can govern relations among the world’s citizens, will be vital to our very survival. The growth of a legal establishment educated and trained to work internationally as ‘new international lawyers’, will foster commercial convenience and advantages now, but will be indispensable to life itself tomorrow.”

c) Text

You can find a scan (PDF) of the original text here:
G_2.14_MURRAY_The Education and Training of a new International Lawyer

© Prof. Jens Drolshammer,,

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