An adventure in Germany: GEO student Nick Duffey on his externship at GÖRG

This is the 1st in a series of posts by University of Georgia School of Law students, writing on their participation in our 2017 Global Governance Summer School and Global Externship Overseas initiatives. Author of this post is 2L Nick Duffey.

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Before my Global Externship Overseas, I had an interest in transnational business, taxation, and trade, but I did not understand how businesses from different countries resolved their disputes. After spending my 1L summer working at GÖRG, a law firm in Cologne, Germany, it is amazing how much more perspective I have on international business law and practice.

International business transactions affect our everyday lives, from the products we use to the services we need to maintain our lifestyles and businesses. Most transactions, whether for the manufacture and shipping of products or for services rendered by a party from one nation to another, contain arbitration clauses or provide for another means of alternative dispute resolution. These dispute resolution mechanisms were the precise focus of my work at GÖRG.

My favorite project during my internship was an emergency arbitration at the 20170707_134329.jpgInternational Chamber of Commerce Court of Arbitration. The entire process, from start to finish, lasted only fifteen days. During this intense period, I was given a particular issue to research, and I was thrilled when the material I found was cited by the arbitrator in the order. The opportunity to see the whole arbitration action from start to finish, and to be integrated into the team working on the project, was very interesting.

I also worked on a project to compare the cost and rates of various arbitration institutions with the cost of litigating in the German court system. The goal was to determine the price at which each arbitration institution broke even with German courts. This required a lot of math and conversion of different currencies. Ultimately, I wrote a memo on my findings and created a presentation to demonstrate to clients the value of arbitration.

20170702_200454.jpgLiving and working in Germany was an adventure. The GÖRG building sits just north of the Deutzer Brücke, a bridge over the Rhine River in Köln; that is, Cologne. It is a modern building with seven floors. I shared an office with a German intern, and she was very helpful when I had questions about the German courts and legal system. I am also grateful to Christof Siefarth, a partner at the firm and an LL.M. graduate of Georgia Law, for his mentorship during the course of the summer and for organizing my externship.

In my free time, I had the chance to participate in cultural events and to travel within Germany. During Kölner Lichter, an annual festival of lights, people from all over Germany flocked to the city to watch the boat parade on the Rhine. I took a day trip south of Köln to visit Castle Drachenfels, a beautiful castle with a rich history. I also spent a weekend in Berlin, a must-see city in Germany. I enjoyed wonderful brunches until late in the afternoon, and visited sights such as the Brandenburg gate, Museum Island, and the Berlin Wall memorial, including the East Side Gallery.

Participating in a GEO at GÖRG is one of the best decisions I have ever made.  I have a new interest in arbitration, and I plan to apply to work at an international arbitration center this coming summer. I look forward to building a career in this field because I want to better understand the way businesses clash and resolve issues on an international level. This summer was amazing not only because I garnered valuable practical legal experience, but also because I got to do so on a wonderful adventure that I will remember for life.

GEO student Zack Lindsey publishes in Global Atlanta

geo2University of Georgia School of Law second-year student Zack Lindsey published an article in Global Atlanta about his experience this summer working in Ghana.

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During his Global Externship Overseas, or GEO,  Zack spent approximately two months in Accra working with Women in Law and Development in Africa. His work focused on the implementation of the Ghanaian Domestic Violence Act of 2007; he was responsible for helping set up a volunteer court watch program, training volunteers on the law, and conducting court surveys. He describes this work as “a key issue for Ghana” because of high rates of spousal abuse, but low rates of conviction under the Act.

global atlantaZack is one of twenty Georgia Law students who participated in the GEO initiative this summer. His article in Global Atlanta, a partner organization of the Dean Rusk International Law Center, draws parallels between the challenges facing victims of domestic violence seeking redress in Ghana to Georgia.

Polish law students and practitioners invited to free webinar October 24 on LL.M. study at Georgia Law

1Law students and lawyers in Poland are invited to register for a free webinar on postgraduate study at the University of Georgia School of Law. It’s set for 17:00 CET on Tuesday, October 24, and will focus on our Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree, a one-year offering for foreign-trained lawyers.

As detailed in this web posting from EducationUSA, our partner in this outreach effort, this informational session will be hosted by Dr. Laura Tate Kagel, our Center’s Director of International Professional Education. Maria Kachniarz, now in her final year of J.D. studies at the University of Georgia School of Law, who is originally from Poland, will also be available to answer questions from prospective applicants about studying law in the United States.

Details on how to join the webinar here. Explore the Georgia Law LL.M. degree here.

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Seeking Associate Director for Global Practice Preparation: Georgia Law’s Dean Rusk International Law Center

sign2We’re looking for a self-initiating, globally minded individual to lead the Global Practice Preparation portfolio here at the Dean Rusk International Law Center, University of Georgia School of Law.

The Associate Director for Global Practice Preparation will advance our 40-year-old Center’s mission by developing and administering global practice preparation initiatives, with the support of an administrative assistant and under the supervision of the Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center.

As detailed in the full job notice, initiatives include:

A J.D. or LL.M. degree or its equivalent is required for this possession. As detailed in the full job notice, the successful applicant also will have significant experience, practice- or research-based, in global affairs, international law, and/or global legal education; proficiency in languages other than English; and experience in events planning and coordination. The successful applicant further will have an ability to travel, as well as a demonstrated self-initiating, entrepreneurial, creative, and collaborative approach to work.

Also expected is dedicated to advancing the mission of the Dean Rusk International Law Center. Named after the former U.S. Secretary of State who taught at Georgia Law in the last decades of his career, the Center has served since 1977 as a nucleus for global research, education, and service.

A PDF of the full job notice is here. To apply, click here and follow registration/application instructions, inserting the posting number 20171879 in order to reach the vacancy, captioned “ASSOC DIRECTOR ADMINISTRATIVE.”

We look forward to filling this vital position asap, so if you’re interested, don’t delay!

Georgia Law students sweeping the planet as Summer 2017 Global Externs

This summer, twenty law students will earn practice experience through our Global Externship initiative. Most will be GEOs, or Global Externs Overseas, while a couple are GEAs, or Global Externs At-Home. Some will complement this experience with participation in our Global Governance Summer School in Belgium and the Netherlands.

Administered by our Dean Rusk International Law Center, University of Georgia School of Law, the decades-old Global Externship enables Georgia Law students to gain practice experience via placements at law firms, in-house legal departments, government agencies, and nongovernmental organizations around the world. Thanks to generous donations, virtually all Global Externs receive financial support from law school funds; a few receive funds from their placement. (Posts about last year’s Global Externs here and here.)

This year’s class of rising 2Ls and 3Ls will work in Africa, North America, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. The class includes twelve students in business-law placements, in practice areas including intellectual property, finance, environment, and trade:

Taryn Arbeiter, U.S. Court of International Trade, New York, New York
► Casey Callahan – Buse Heberer Fromm, Frankfurt, Germany
► James Cox – PSA Legal, New Delhi, India
► Nicholas Duffey – GÖRG, Cologne, Germany
► Brian Griffin – PwC, Milan, Italy
► Karen Hays – Fererro, Luxembourg
► Matt Isihara – MV Kini, New Delhi, India
► George Ligon – PwC, Milan, Italy
► Nils Okeson – Maples Teesdale, London, England
► Matt Poletti – Araoz & Rueda, Madrid, Spain
► Nicholas Steinheimer – PSA Legal, New Delhi, India
► Ezra Thompson – Al Tamimi & Co., Dubai, United Arab Emirates

The remaining eight students will be in public interest law placements, working on issues such as international criminal law, international child law, and international human rights:

► Jeremy Akin – Research Assistant for Professor William A. Schabas, Middlesex University, London, England
► Lauren Brown – War Child, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
► Jennifer Cotton – Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack / Human Rights Watch, New York, New York
► Wade Herring – Open Society Justice Initiative, The Hague, The Netherlands
► Zack Lindsey – Women in Law and Development in Africa, Accra, Ghana
► Lyddy O’Brien – No Peace Without Justice, Brussels, Belgium
► Azurae Orie – Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack / Human Rights Watch, remote research from Athens, Georgia
►Rebecca Wackym – Legal Unit of the Hebron Rehabilitation Committee, Israel

Join us in congratulating them on their success and wishing them a great summer!

Applications now welcome for 2017 Global Governance Summer School, presented by Georgia Law & Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies

We at the Dean Rusk International Law Center at the University of Georgia School of Law, are proud to partner with the Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies at the University of Leuven, to present our 2017 Global Governance Summer School. The Summer School’s core events will take place June 26-30 in Belgium.

Georgia Law students will join at Leuven a target audience of: advanced students in international law, international relations, international political economy, and international and European studies; and practitioners and policy experts who wish to update their knowledge on developments in global governance and international law. We partner institutions welcome applications from such individuals; register here.

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Peace Palace at The Hague in the Netherlands, home of the International Court of Justice

Our Georgia Law students will begin their European journey with a 3-day professional development trip to The Hague, site of many international legal institutions. Plans include attendance at the trial  of Prosecutor v. Ongwen at the International Criminal Court, touring the Peace Palace and a briefing at the International Court of Justice, and an audience with a judge and legal advisers at the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal.

Our students then will travel to the centuries-old University of Leuven, one of Europe’s premier research institutions, to take part, alongside other participants, in the Belgium-based Global Governance Summer School. The program is as follows:

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University Library, University of Leuven, Belgium

► June 26-28, participants will attend classroom seminars on issues of international law and global governance, including global economic and trade governance and global human rights, rule of law, and security governance. Instructors include the Summer School’s co-directors, Georgia Law Associate Dean Diane Marie Amann and Leuven Professor Jan Wouters, along with others from both universities: from Georgia Law, Professor Harlan Cohen and Kathleen A. Doty, our Center’s Director for Global Practice Preparation; from Leuven, Dean Bart Kerremans, Professors Horst Fischer, Dominik SteigerGeert Van Calster, Drs. Matthieu Burnay and Nicolas Hachez, and Senior Researcher Philip De Man.

► Next, on June 29, Summer School participants will participate in International Law and Global Governance in a Turbulent World, an expert conference featuring three panels composed of scholars and practitioners from around the world:

  • Global Governance of Human Rights. How to enforce universal values in contested world?
  • Global Governance of Democracy and Rule of Law in international perspective.
  • Global Economic and Trade Governance in Protectionist Times. Will we see the emergence of trade wars in the coming years?
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Headquarters of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Brussels, Belgium

► The Summer School will conclude on June 30 with a professional development trip in Brussels, where students will visit the headquarters of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the office of the global law firm Sidley Austin LLP.

Further information here; registration for the Belgium-based components of the Summer School here.

Washington week: Our Louis B. Sohn Fellows’ tour of D.C. monuments

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Gathering before the D.C. memorial to Atlanta-based Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: from left, Lyddy O’Brien, Chanel Chauvet, Nelly Sandra Ndounteng, Taryn Arbeiter, Kathleen A. Doty, Johann Ebongom, and Eric Health

During the 2017 American Society of International Law Annual Meeting earlier this month in Washington, D.C., members of our University of Georgia School of Law community took a break from volunteering to spend an evening touring the monuments on the National Mall.

On the tour were Georgia Law students who traveled from our Athens campus thanks to Louis B. Sohn Professional Development Fellowship grants awarded by the law school’s Dean Rusk International Law Center; they are: 1L Lyddy O’Brien, 2L Chanel Chauvet, and LLM candidates Johann Ebongom and Nelly Sandra Ndounteng. Chanel took part in the Annual Meeting as the recipient of a scholarship from the Blacks in ASIL Task Force, and the other Sohn Fellows volunteered at the annual meeting. They were joined in D.C. by another Annual Meeting volunteer, 2L Taryn Arbeiter, who is completing a full-time externship at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative as part of Georgia Law’s D.C. Semester in Practice initiative.

Pick 2.jpgLeading the monuments tour were Kathleen A. Doty, Director of Global Practice Preparation at the Dean Rusk International Law Center, and Eric Heath, who earned his Georgia Law J.D. degree in 2015 and now practices in D.C. as a Legislative Staffer in the U.S. House of Representatives.

In addition to MLK, the group visited the Lincoln, Korean War, and Roosevelt memorials. Afterwards, they shared a meal before returning to the ASIL events.

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Georgia Law hosts Hendrix Lecture by arbitration expert, Geneva Professor Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler

The University of Georgia School of Law Dean Rusk International Law Center is honored to host the second annual Hendrix Lecture of the Atlanta International Arbitration Society at 6 p.m. Monday, March 27, 2017, at its Atlanta campus, 3475 Lenox Road N.E.

Delivering the lecture will be Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler (left), a Professor of Law at the Geneva University Law School in Switzerland. Known worldwide for her expertise in international arbitration, she has:

► Acted in over 200 international arbitrations, mainly as an arbitrator; and

► Appeared on numerous institutional arbitration panels, including those of the International Chamber of Commerce, International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes, American Arbitration Association, London Court of International Arbitration, Singapore International Arbitration Centre, and the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission.

A partner at the Geneva law firm Lévy Kaufmann-Kohler, she formerly practiced law at Schellenberg Wittmer and Baker & McKenzie. She is a member of the Bars of Geneva and New York and of the American Arbitration Association, and  is the Honorary President of the Swiss Arbitration Association.

The Hendrix Lecture is named for Glenn P. Hendrix (right), a partner in the Atlanta office of Arnall Golden Gregory LLP and a founder of the Atlanta International Arbitration Society, also known as AtlAS. Georgia Law is among the founding member organizations of the Society, a non-profit organization that seeks to grow the international arbitration community in the southeastern United States.

This year’s Hendrix Lecture is jointly presented by AtlAS and the Dean Rusk International Law Center, and is part of the law school’s Georgia Women in Law Lead (Georgia WILL) initiative. It is cosponsored by Georgia Law’s Women Law Students Association and its International Law Society. Cooperating entities include the Atlanta Center for International Arbitration and Mediation, the Washington, D.C.-based American Society of International Law, JAMS, the Vienna International Arbitration Centre in Austria, and the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution in New York City.

Registration, snacks, and drinks will begin at 6:00 p.m., and the lecture will begin at 6:30. There will be a reception to follow. A few seats still remain; please register and join us!

“The Legacy of Fidel Castro” – upcoming panel Monday, December 5

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I’m pleased to announce that on Monday, December 5, 2016, I’ll be speaking on a panel about Fidel Castro’s legacy. It will take place from 2:00-3:30 p.m. in the Zell Miller Learning Center, Room 213.

Convened by the Latin American and LASCI_PatrickCaribbean Studies Institute and co-history_faculty_04sponsored by the Dean Rusk International Law Center, the panel will also feature professors from several departments at the University of Georgia, including: Reinaldo timsamples_web_portrait_largeRomán from History (left), Susan Thomas from Musicology (left), and Tim Samples from the Terry College of Business (right).s_thomas_preferred

We’ll discuss the legacy, both positive and negative, that Castro leaves behind: universal healthcare, employment, and education, but also international sanctions, and human and kate - Copycivil rights abuses (about which I’ve written, here). In particular, I’ll talk about the legacy of U.S.-Cuban relations as seen through the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo, one of my current topics of research.

Hope to see you there!

 

Sojourn stirs questions about policies in China, Cuba and the United States

Our Center’s Director of Global Practice Preparation, Kathleen A. Doty, is a World Affairs Council Young Leaders Fellow just completing her tour of China. Traveling with her have been eleven others, many from globally minded businesses. This is the last dispatch in Kate’s series of posts on her travels.

4BEIJING – The people of China are warm. They love babies. I quickly found the best way to make a friend was to coo at the child in her arms. They love long meals and good toasts, and have spent centuries mastering the art of hospitality. Being a guest in China is wonderful.

Beijing is a vastly different city than Shanghai. It is old, gritty, artistic. I heard many people say that Beijing was like Washington, D.C., and Shanghai was like New York. I think that it is a shallow comparison, and having lived in both U.S. cities, I disagree.image1

New York is much more than high rises; Beijing is a city alive and rich in a similar way. Of course, this impression has much to do with the organization of our trip; in Shanghai we were taken primarily to government developments, while in Beijing we were taking primarily to private companies and cultural sites. We visited the sleek showroom of Huawei, the Chinese version of Apple, and iQIYI, the Chinese version of Netflix, which exudes a hip imagestart-up vibe. I sipped exotic tea as I strolled through galleries in the profoundly cool 798 Art District, wandered back alleys in Old World neighborhoods, and saw a palace that has been grand since before my own country was founded. When the lights went out in a restaurant at dinner, the servers calmly brought candles to the table and we kept on with the toasts. Beijing was much more what I image2expected to find in China: a mix of the modern and the historical, of wealth and underdevelopment.

Cultural heritage was a theme I pondered throughout the trip. China is old in a way that I, a woman from Colorado, a place young even in the history of the United States, find mind-blowing. Beijing is a huge city. The several ring roads surrounding it put the Beltway or the Perimeter to shame. The city has been developed and redeveloped countless times, replacing so much of what once was. Walking the Great Wall (which is covered in scratched graffiti, in Chinese characters so foreign to my eye) and seeing the Forbidden City provided just a taste of an incredibly rich history that, little by little, is lost with improvements to modern life. I commented to a friend, an American expat living in China, that I found this sad. He responded that the history in 3China is too long to preserve the physical – you just can’t save every 5,000-year-old building – the cultural heritage of China lives in the language. Having mastered only four words in ten days – “Hello,” “Thank you,” “Cheers,” and “too expensive” – I have to admit that this is lost on me. But it emphasized the importance of intangible cultural heritage work as a means of preserving at least some of an ancient way of life.

Sitting alone in a public park one day, I marveled at how a parent or grandparent needed only to speak a word to a child and he or she behaved. Meeting times were given at strangely precise intervals (for example, 1:25) and taken very seriously. I heard more apologies for tardiness than I thought reasonable given a city of such size and with such congestion. Our guides shared their views that much of Eastern culture derives from Confucius’ thought, and emphasizes hierarchy and respect. This consideration to others was surprising given our pre-trip prepping that people push and don’t stand in line or respect your space, but it just reinforced the cultural difference in the meaning of “consideration.” In so many of my reflections about Communism and the economy, I couldn’t help but wonder how much of the attitudes I picked up on were born of pre-existing Eastern philosophy and culture, or from the current economic and political systems in the country.

I also couldn’t help but wonder about the tension between the incredible feats of the state and human rights. Much has been written about this topic and I am no expert, so I won’t belabor the point. But I found myself reflecting, much as I did during my studies in Cuba, on the tension between the social benefits of a Communist system – universal healthcare, education, and in the case of China, the elevation of an extraordinary number of people out of poverty in a short time frame – with the profound lack of freedoms.

2During our visit to the Great Wall, we were standing in an epically long line to take a shuttle bus from the base of the Wall to the parking lot where our bus was waiting. Our guide, a young man in the employ of the University who spoke nearly perfect English, sighed as we inched forward. He said:

“Thank God for the family planning policy.”

I was surprised because the one-child policy so deeply offends our Western concept of individual choice that I simply expected someone of roughly my age to concur; yet in such a populous country, a limit on the number of people is sometimes welcome. I relayed my surprise at his comment to another young Chinese woman I met, and she said,

“Oh yes. The problem with the family planning is that we now have a China that is out of balance, with too many old people and not enough young ones.”

I was so amazed; again, it was a comment totally focused on the macro. Is that Chinese culture? Is that the effect of a Communist system of government? Is it both?

These are the questions that will for me remain unanswered. After studying in Cuba, my takeaway was that they don’t have it right, but neither do we in the United States. The “right” is somewhere in the middle. My impression of China is that it is inching closer to the right balance than Cuba. I have far more context about Cuba to make that statement; this trip showed me, more than anything else, how much I don’t know about China. But standing in Tiananmen Square in the rain, I couldn’t help but think that an inch is terrifically small.