We are living in the “Era of Globalization”. Globalization is not a synonym of Global business, but it is more than that. Globalization poses variety of complex trends in the economic, social and cultural fabrics of all societies. We live in an intensely interdependent world in which all immense differences of culture and historical experience are compressed together in instant communication.
The international transactions in services are defined as the economic output of intangible commodities that may be produced, transferred and consumed at the same time Traditionally services are viewed as domestic activities due to direct contact between producer and consumer and government monopoly in infrastructure sector. The emerging digitization concept has altered this perception.
The ascent of information and communication technology has given rise to e-commerce, e-banking, e-learning, e-medicine and e-governance. So, it is argued that government finds it increasingly difficult to cope up with technology-driven ctivities. Because of that Nowadays Education has turned out to be a commodity of international trade. It is no more a public good on domestic scale, but a private good on global scale. Globalization brings education to the front lines. In the prevailing discourse, education is expected to be the major tool for incorporation into the ‘knowledge society’ and the technological economy. In this paper author is going to see the impact of globalization on legal education in India. As we all know that ‘Law is the cement of society and an essential medium of change. Globalization and Legal Education in India
We broadly understand globalization as an ongoing process which entails the free movement of capital, labour, goods and services across national borders. However, these parameters of economic globalization cannot be viewed in isolation from other aspects such as the free exchange of ideas and practices. From this perspective, the legal systems in various countries have a lot to learn from each other – both in terms of institutional design and the evolution of substantive lawswith increasing trade and investment across borders, there is an imperative need for all of us to understand the functioning of international institutions. At the same time, our national legal system must offer a balanced response to the rapidly changing socio-economic realities. We must also bear in mind that in this age of the internet and frequent international travel, judges, lawyers, academicians and even law students from different countries have a lot of opportunities to interact, collaborate and learn from each other’s experiences. Access to foreign legal materials has become much easier on account of the development of information and communication technology.
A few years ago, subscriptions to foreign law reports and law reviews were quite expensive and hence beyond the reach of most judges, practitioners and educational institutions. However, the growth of the internet and globalization has radically changed the picture. The decisions of most Constitutional Courts are uploaded on freely accessible websites Furthermore; electronic databases operated by prominent publishing houses have ensured that judges, practitioners and law students all over the world an readily browse through materials from several jurisdictions. Such easy access to international and comparative materials has also been the key factor behind the emergence of internationally competitive commercial law firms and Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) operations in India. The present law has to deal with problems of diverse magnitudes and a student of law and an Advocate has to be trained in Professional skills to meet the challenges of globalization and universalisation of law.
Legal education should also prepare lawyers to meet the new challenges of working in a globalized knowledge economy in which the nature and organization of law and legal practice are undergoing a paradigm shift. The Law Commission of India defines legal education as a science which imparts to students knowledge of certain principles and provisions of law to enable them to enter the legal profession. Legal Education is the process which equips the future lawyer, judge, administrator, counselor and legal scientists to know how legislative, executive, judicial organs of the government, are designed and how they operates.
Legal Education is a technique, arena and platform for rational, orderly and non-violent settlement of disputes and handling of conflicts. Constitutional recognition to legal education and its progress in India The Constitution of India basically laid down the duty of imparting education on the states by putting the matter pertaining to education in List II of the Seventh Schedule. But it now forms part of List III, giving concurrent legislative powers to the Union and the States. Legal profession along with the medical and other professions also falls under List III (Entry 26).
However, the Union is empowered to co-ordinate and determines standards in institutions for higher education or research and scientific and technical institutions besides having exclusive power, inter alia, pertaining to educational institutions of national importance, professional, vocational or technical training and promotion of special studies or research empowered by the Constitution to legislate in respect of legal profession, Parliament enacted the Advocates Act, 1961, which brought uniformity in the system of legal practitioners in the form of Advocates and provided for setting up of he Bar Council of India and State Bar Councils in the States. Changed Scenario of Legal Education due to globalization About fifty years ago the concept was that the law schools are meant to produce graduates who would mostly come to the bar, while a few may go into law teaching. But during this period the entire concept of legal education has changed. Today, legal education has to meet not only the requirements of the bar and the new needs of trade, commerce and industry but also the requirements of globalization. New subjects with international dimensions have come into legal education.
In the changed scenario, the additional roles envisaged are that of policy planner, business advisor, negotiator among interest groups, expert in articulation and communication of ideas, mediator, lobbyist, law reformer, etc. These roles demand specialized knowledge and skills not ordinarily available in the existing legal education. The National Knowledge Commission (NKC) was, however, established by the Prime Minister of India in 2005 to recommend and undertake reforms in order to make India knowledge based economy and society.
The National Knowledge Commission, while deliberating on issues related to knowledge concepts recognizes legal education as an important constituent of professional education. The working Group on legal education, inter alias, identified the problems and challenges relating to curriculum and recommended changes and reforms relating to curriculum . The report recommends the development of contemporary curriculum, which is integrated with other disciplines and also ensures regular feedback from stakeholders . The curricula and syllabi must be based in a multi-disciplinary body of social science and scientific knowledge .
Curriculum development should include expanding the domain of optional courses, providing deeper understanding of professional ethics, modernizing clinic courses, mainstreaming legal aid programs and developing innovative pedagogic methods . With the advent of globalization, it has become increasingly important to include international and comparative law perspectives. According to C. Rajkumar, in the era of globalization, we should pay attention in four important factors to improve the standard of legal education. These are: Global curriculum, Global faculty, Global degrees and Global interactions.
We have to think globally but act locally. Law is one of the most dynamic subjects of the world. Dynamism is the life blood of law . A law which is static cannot survive for long and will be rejected by people for whom the law will be implemented. So, to keep pace with the changing situation of the world we have also to change, by addition, subtraction, or cancellation, of the existing curriculum of the legal education in India. Otherwise, in future, it will lose its importance and will turn into a relic of the past.