27 January 2017
IBA 12th Annual Bar Leaders' Conference
24–27 May 2017, Belfast Waterfront, Belfast, Northern Ireland
The IBA is the world's leading organisation of international legal practitioners, bar associations and law societies. Its principal aims and objectives are to promote an exchange of information between legal associations worldwide, to support the independence of the judiciary and the right of lawyers to practice their profession without interference and to support of human rights for lawyers worldwide through its Human Rights Institute.
What better place for the IBA to have its Bar Leaders Conference and Mid-Year meeting than in Belfast Northern Ireland and for the attendees to explore the many opportunities to work with local law firms here.
Preliminary Conference Details
It is the Law Society's pleasure to bring you preliminary details for the 12th Annual Bar Leaders' Conference & IBA Mid-Year Meetings taking place in Belfast Waterfront, Belfast, Northern Ireland on 24-27 May 2017.
This key event will bring together delegates from around the globe to discuss the latest developments and thorny issues affecting the legal profession today.
This year's programme will include input from expert panellists and commentators as well as encouraging interaction from delegates in several discussion sessions.
In the past number of years the Law Society has been extremely proactive in engaging with the international legal community to favorably profile the legal expertise, which our local firms have, and with the help of Invest NI to help them seek out new work opportunities in other jurisdictions.
A total of nine of our local law firms sent representatives to the last IBA Conference in Washington USA in September 2016 and this law firm networking is already bearing fruit for some of these firms by creating contacts for new legal work.
The forthcoming conference will create further networking opportunities for attendees to meet international business lawyers with diverse legal interests and for these business lawyers to explore the legal, business and other opportunities presented by Belfast and Northern Ireland.
Business and Social Programme
The Law Society, through its IBA representative Norville Connolly, has for some years been lobbying the IBA to host one of its major conferences in Belfast.
This is now going to happen with the IBA Bar Leaders Conference & Mid-Year Meeting coming to Belfast in May this year.
An interesting business and social programme has been put together for the Conference, which will bring together delegates from around the globe to discuss the latest developments and thorny issues affecting the legal profession today.
This year's programme will include input from expert panelists and commentators as well as encouraging interaction from delegates in several discussion sessions.
The speakers will include:
The Law Society President, Ian Huddleston and
The Law Society Chief Executive, Alan Hunter
Other distinguished speakers
Topics for Discussion
Brexit: opportunities or challenges for Bar Associations and Law Firms
Protectionism, cooperation or exploitation?: How local and international lawyers work together today, and best practices for Bar Associations to help their professions win a bigger slice of the international pie.
How can leadership be encouraged within Bar Associations?
Robot lawyers?: the challenges and opportunities to the legal community in the age of artificial intelligence,
The Steering Committee has also put together a most interesting social programme, the highlights of which are as follows:
Welcome Reception in the High Court of Justice on the 24th May 2017
Bar Leaders Dinner in Stormont, Parliament Buildings Belfast with a pre-dinner tour and historical talk by Dr Eamon Phoenix (ticketed event) 25th May 2017
Closing Reception in the City Hall Belfast on the 26th May 2017
Registration for the conference will open on 28th February 2017, but people can register their interest online and then they will receive an update when it 'goes live'. The link is:
By registering your interest for this event you will receive full conference details as soon as registration is open, including programme and social event updates.
There are also opportunities for firms to sponsor part of the social programme.
Those interested should contact the Law Society.
We look forward to welcoming the International Bar Association here on the 24th May 2017.
Chair of the Steering Group for IBA Conference Belfast 2017
Past President Law Society Northern Ireland
Law Society Northern Ireland’s Nominee to the IBA
Senior Officer, IBA Bar Issues Commission
Council Member, IBA Human Rights Commission.
We would like to keep you informed by email. Are you happy to receive information from us? *