Thinking creatively in CLE: Insights and reflections on addressing pandemic challenges at UKZN and Bond University

Francina Cantatore, David Mc Quoid-Mason

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearch


This paper presents a comparative case study of two university programs in diverse jurisdictions post Covid-19. It reflects on and compares how two clinical legal education (CLE) programs, a South African university law clinic program (University of Kwazulu-Natal) and an Australian university law clinic program (Bond University) were impacted by and dealt with the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, and lessons learnt from their experience. It addresses the initial impacts of the global pandemic, the effects of pandemic restrictions on CLE in universities, the challenges faced, and initiatives introduced to sustain existing CLE programs and create new opportunities for students. It further considers how these learnings can inform and sustain future clinics.
At Bond University COVID-19 measures saw the implementation of additional technology and online consultations for client advice clinics, as well as the introduction of two online clinic programs: an Internet Law Clinic (in collaboration with an international organisation, APNIC), and a Public Interest Legal Tech Clinic, a project-based clinic supporting NFPs and charities with legal technology issues. Ay UKZN, Covid-19 constraints were addressed through mainly low-tech solutions, due to the nature of the Clinic’s clients. Professor McQuoid-Mason helped to design a system that was a combination of face-to-face, telephonic and virtual consultations. In addition, he provided publications in the SA Medical Journal to guide doctors through the new legal regulations and protection of patients’ rights.
Resulting from the COVID-19 initiatives it is envisaged that the innovations will continue to provide increased options for student, client and lawyer interactions. In some jurisdictions (such as Australia) it may provide greater access to justice for regional clients, while in others (such as KZN) some rural clients will continue to require in person services.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 12 Dec 2022
EventInternational Global Alliance for Justice Education Worldwide Conference: Justice Education: Building Resilience and Strong Connections in Times of Global Challenges - University of Stellenbosch, Stellenbosch, South Africa
Duration: 11 Dec 202215 Dec 2022
Conference number: 11th (Program)


ConferenceInternational Global Alliance for Justice Education Worldwide Conference
Abbreviated titleGAJE WWC
Country/TerritorySouth Africa
OtherThe world continues to face unprecedented multiple challenges linked to war, health crises, climate change and economic, social and political instabilities, which are also deeply affecting education and the production of knowledge.

In these times, socially relevant justice education becomes even more important. Not only because of its potential to confront crucial practical legal problems societies face and to find innovative responses to them, but also to build-up resilient societies able to overcome the multiple challenges.

This conference, organised in partnership between the Global Alliance for Justice Education, the International Journal of Clinical Legal Education, the South African University Law Clinics Association and the Faculty of Law of the University of Stellenbosch will provide a platform to discuss the current challenges and how resilience can be built-up within society. It offers (in person and online) an important forum for making strong connections with and being inspired by a broad diversity of legal justice educators from all over the world. It provides a unique platform for sharing innovative approaches and research on educational methods promoting students’ engagement, diversity and social justice.

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