Monday, 15 January 2018

I am a legal researcher. What is your superpower?

Surrounded by articles and books and constrained by deadlines and meetings, I could finally manage to reach out to my blog. Glad to be here again. My motive this time is to warn you not to apply for the Legal Research Master’s! Yes, don’t you dare.

Unless you are genuinely striving for learning what law is and ought to be, how to solve complex legal issues, and which methods would enable you to do so; do not apply for it. Many people here in the Netherlands and in Egypt have been asking me “what do you study?” When I reply with: “legal research”, they say: “Yes, but which domain of law; public or private? Which branch of law; criminal, administrative, civil, etc.? And, which legal order do you study? Is it national, international or European?        

I reply with: “perhaps all; I study legal research, I am being trained to research law, but let me further explain...” To my mind, Legal Research Master’s (LRM) inspires me to see how Law can be used as a tool of change. At the LRM arena, this inspiration arose from looking at law from three windows; one is philosophical, the second is methodological and the third is practical.

The first is philosophical, because when I read the assigned literature and attend lectures, I approach law as a science, and therefore, many questions emerge about Law and its characteristics.  Secondly, the methodological discourse exposes me to various debates on several types of legal research. This makes me understand more how law actually functions and how it can be used in the most reliable sense. Lastly, I see law from a practical window because at LRM we are acquainted, more often than not, with tackling and solving complex issues that emerge from the intertwinement of legal orders, in each domain and in each branch of law. The rational is, those who understand law best and know how to use it through a thorough training are able to lead in any branch of law -able to change for better.

These insights are provided to me via Methodology and Dynamics meetings, assignments and literature; the foundational elements of the LRM.  Although I make the substance of the LRM seem too broad, in later blogs I will dig deeper and discuss with examples; how such elements can be utilized in a given specialization. Also, I will discuss the possibility & flexibility to narrow down your focus to the topics of your interest.
If you are up for this challenge and want to know more about the LRM from an international perspective, stay tuned for the upcoming blogs in which I will give some insights on the LRM activities, research projects and courses, etc. Stay tuned!