Globalisation has reshaped the legal landscape. The law industry is no longer restricted by traditional geographic boundaries, and legal interactions, international mergers and the expansion of many law firms overseas has created a global legal landscape.
What does this mean for law students and those looking to practice in the legal sector?
– International legal careers. As law firms expand their offices, the likelihood of lawyers having international careers and stints in various locations across the globe has grown. Rather than being limited by traditional national borders, the legal recruitment process and job boards advertising available positions are now global in nature. This has made both the pool of job applicants, and the pool of job listings themselves, significantly larger and more diverse in nature.
– Opportunity for movement and growth. The globalisaiton of the law industry has significantly altered the nature of legal careers. Career progression is no longer restricted to a firm or city, and working your way up the ranks within those boundaries. Globalisation has significantly grown the opportunities and scope for career movement and development within the legal industry.
– International focus of law degrees. Many Australian law firms are expanding and opening offices in countries through Europe, Asia and the United States, and there is a growing focus in Australian Universities on providing legal education which prepares students to fill legal jobs or develop full careers overseas.
The new Juris Doctor postgraduate degree, being offered by Universities such as UTS, UNSW, and the University of Sydney, offers a more international focus, and better prepares all students who are seeking legal jobs in Australia and abroad. Many other countries have implemented similar syllabi.
The globalisation of the law industry has had a significant impact on legal careers, legal job opportunities and legal education. As the globalisation trend continues, the effects will continue to be felt within the industry, as both firms and lawyers continue to grow with the changing global legal landscape.