NEW DEADLINE: Asia Regional Course on Public Interest Lawyering 2023 is open for Applications until February 10th 2023!

READ The full Call for Applications

PILnet and the Leitner Center are launching their second virtual Regional Course on Public Interest Lawyering  for  lawyers and representatives of  NGOs in the Asian region on February 24. This 5-week, online course aims to create a channel for young public interest-minded lawyers to gain experience and an international perspective at the outset of their career and build a network among them and relevant existing groups and organizations.

Junior lawyers, recent law graduates and NGO representatives interested in public interest law are welcome to apply to join the course. Applicants with a legal background and familiarity with public interest law in Asia will be given preference. The program will accept 50 participants. The course is free of charge.

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Course Overview

Law school professors often tell arriving students that their job is to teach them to “think like lawyers.” But by the time they leave law school, these students have usually only learned to think like a particular kind of lawyer–one that is ready to represent the interests of paying clients.

To represent the interests of society as a whole (in what is commonly called “justice”) lawyers may need a different kind of thinking. To explore this idea, PILnet developed a course that is built around five core concepts critical to shaping the way public interest lawyers think.

These are

  • Access to Justice;
  • Pro Bono Publico;
  • Strategic Litigation;
  • Legal Empowerment;
  • New Directions in Public Interest Lawyering.

Course Objectives

  • Increase knowledge about the history, current practices and applications of public interest lawyering to address unmet legal needs in society and contribute to broader social reforms.
  • Enhance resources, tools and skills that can be used by NGOs, clearinghouses, and pro bono/PIL lawyers to increase their knowledge, effectiveness and resilience.
  • Enable sharing of information, promotion of best practices, and collaboration among target audiences

More info


February 24, 2023

5-7 pm HKT

Access to Justice

Resources available from February 20.

Practice discussion:

  • Ms. Sara Hossain, BLAST, Bangladesh
  • Adv. Hina Jilani, Supreme Court of Pakistan
  • Prof. Zhang Wanhong, Wuhan University School of Law, China
March 03, 2023

5-7 pm HKT

Pro Bono Publico

Resources available from February 27.

Practice discussion:

  • Asst. Prof. Helena Whalen-Bridge, National University of Singapore, Singapore
  • Mr. Tanguy Lim, Law Society Pro Bono Services (LSPBS), Singapore
  • Ms. Tze-Wei Ng, Stephenson Harwood (former deputy director at PILnet), Hong Kong
March 10, 2023

5-7 pm HKT

Strategic Litigation

Resources available from March 3


Practice discussion:

  • Mrs. Patricia Ho – Patrica Ho and Associates, Hong Kong
  • Dr. Pill Kyu Hwang, GONGGAM, South Korea
  • Ms. Liu Jinmei, Friends of Nature, China
March 17, 2023

5-7 pm HKT

Legal Empowerment

Resources available from March 13.

Practice discussion:

  • Prof. Marlon Manuel, Namati, Philippines
  • Ms. Haya Zahid, Legal Aid Society, Pakistan
  • Ms. Asfinawaty Ayub, Indonesia
March 24, 2023

5-7 pm HKT

Public Interest Lawyering: New Directions

Resources available March 23

Discussion Speakers from previous sessions and

  • Prof. Surya Deva, Professor at the Macquarie Law School, Sydney