Comparative Law Expert, Professor Sujit Choudhry

Comparative law deals with the study of the similarities and differences in legal systems. The comparisons of rules governing legal systems help analyze various legal cultures. It is a vital area of study for those who want to understand the foreign legal system. It is very useful when it comes of harmonization of laws, considering that the world nowadays is like one big village and all countries are keen on international cooperation. Legislators, as well as courts all over the world, always have to refer to foreign legal systems. It has become important not only as a field of study in institutions of higher learning but also in the shaping of the world order.

Sujit Choudhry, the I. Michael Heyman Professor of Law, is a globally recognized authority on comparative constitutional development and comparative constitutional law. He is also the Faculty Director and Founder of Center for Constitutional Transitions, a university-based center that focuses on generating and mobilizing knowledge in support of constitution building. The center achieves this by overseeing their international network of experts as they work on theme-based projects aimed at helping practitioners acquire policy options based on evidence.

Currently, Professor Choudhry is working hand in hand with International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance, and they are supervising three international research projects. The study will be published in 2017. Mr. Choudhry has many years of experience in comparative law considering that he acted as an advisor in the constitution-building processes of ethnically divided countries like South Africa, Ukraine, Egypt, and Libya. His works are mainly as a result of extensive researches on areas comparative law. Some of the issues he handles are the minority and group rights, constitutional design in the case of transition from authoritarian to democratic rule and the official language policy.

Before joining Berkeley, Sujit served as the Cecelia Goetz Professor of Law at the New York University School of Law and while at Toronto University, he was the Scholl Chair at the Faculty of Law. In 2010, Mr. Choudhry was among the four Canadians who received the Trudeau Fellowship. While in Canada, he was part of the Governing Toronto Advisory Panel. The Panel came up with various reforms to be made by the municipal government in Toronto. Professor Choudhry has served as a consultant to the World Bank Institute and the United Nations Development Program and once served at the Supreme Court of Canada as clerk to Chief Justice Antonio Lamer. He has law degrees from Harvard, Toronto, and Oxford Universities.