Leah Wortham, 12 Clinical Law Review 601 (2006) The article was spurred by Rodney Uphoff’s 1999 article, “Why In-House Live Client Clinics Won’t Work in Romania: Confessions of a Clinician Educator.” Wortham examines the Law and Development Movement, the New Law and Development Movement, the rule-of-law paradigm, various legal scholarships, and personal experiences as an international human rights advocate in an effort to assess how clinical programs abroad can be successfully deployed today.
Wortham provides suggestions as to how clinical legal education can be most effective while avoiding ethnocentric pitfalls and building true collaborative relationships. Wortham contends that the establishment of clinics abroad should be encouraged so long as three requirements are met: 1) direct experience with poor clients or otherwise underserved interests; 2) faculty involvement; and 3) competence and sincerity of the participants. Once these requirements are met, Wortham argues that funders of clinical education abroad should give maximum flexibility as to implementation to local actors and use reporting mechanisms to focus efforts and evaluate progress. The article also discusses the institutional frameworks and contextual characteristics that one must examine in determining the best strategies to promote.
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