2014 Myanmar Legal Capacity Assessment
In 2012, Columbia University (CU), and in particular the Columbia Law School (CLS) and the Institute for the Study of Human Rights (ISHR), established an interest in positioning Columbia as a partner in the efforts to develop the legal education system in Myanmar. With funding from the Open Society Foundations’ Higher Education Support Program (OSF/HESP), Columbia began sending faculty and associates of Columbia to guest lecture courses at Yangon University. Following internal discussions after these first forays, and sensing broader opportunities for involvement, CLS and the ISHR decided to commission a Legal Education Capacity Assessment in order to locate the specific needs within the Myanmar law departments, the organizations already involved in legal education development and their activities, and areas where Columbia, CLS, and the ISHR might best make use of their resources in developing legal education throughout the country.
The assessment, which took place from January 21 – March 1, 2014, included the teaching of a two-week short course in both International Human Rights Law and Public International Law at Mandalay University. Additionally, it included interviews over six-weeks with various law departments, organizations, conferences, and individuals throughout the country.
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