Training a countervailing elite: The necessity of an Effective Lawyering skills pedagogy to a rule of law revival in the developing world

This presentation based on an article I recently published is a followup to a presentation I made to this conference two years ago. It more fully explores the thesis that not only is the teaching of lawyering skills desirable in the law schools of the developing world, it is in fact necessary to train a cadre of lawyers to act, in the words of Alexis de Toqueville, as a "countervailing elite" to the forces of militarism and dictatorship. Lawyers must be trained to effectively navigate and operate within extant legal systems in order to buttress those institutions and inspire the population to have faith in the processes of law as an alternative to turning to extralegal, perhaps violent means, to seek societal goals. Presently, the ex cathedra/lecture-oriented pedagogical methods employed in many schools do not facilitate this goal. Lawyers graduate without the full arsenal of tools to participate fully in the activities of nation building and the promotion of human rights. My presentation will aim to give attendees ammunition to go back to their schools to argue for the bolstering of their skills programs by explaining why present methods are not working as well as they could, why alteration is important, what changes could be implemented, and pedagogical means that could be employed at schools with limited financial means and human capital. The presentation will also suggest how professors from America and other industrialized nations might best assist with these endeavors.