International development is a multidisciplinary field focused on improving the economic, political and social quality of life for people in developing countries through poverty alleviation, humanitarian and foreign aid, disaster preparedness, healthcare, education, economic and infrastructure development, rule of law and governance, and environmental sustainability.
Lawyers in international development provide legal education workshops to citizens in other countries, resolve disputes between host governments and project participants, or serve as a support for U.S. professionals on local laws in a host country. International development lawyers may work in NGOs, government agencies, non-profit organizations, or law firms and consulting groups.
What to do if you are interested in International Development?
Georgetown Law Courses
Introduction to International Development & Humanitarian Assistance (coming Fall 2020)
Developing and Financing Infrastructure Projects
Social Enterprise, Impact Investing and the Law
Foreign Relations Law
International Business Transactions
International Economic Law
The Policy Clinic: Climate, Health & Food, Human Rights & Trade (The Harrison Institute for Public Law)
Helpful International Development Resources
- American Society for International Law Career Resources Page (ASIL) promotes the development of opportunities in international law for individuals at every stage of their career. The Career Development Page includes resources, professional development programming, research and job links. See also the ASIL Electronic Information System for International Law for additional career resources
- Georgetown Law Human Rights Career Guide provides an overview of the human rights field, shares Georgetown Law resources, tips for building a successful career, and information about the work being done in a wide variety of sectors and settings.
- Georgetown School of Foreign Service features a series of employment sector profiles that span a wide range of international law-related fields.
- Harvard Guide on International Development provides advice on how to start an international development career, offers real-world accounts on working in the field, and a comprehensive directory of international organizations.
- PSJD International Resources includes links to several NALP resources on International Public Interest Careers and excellent school guides. See especially the NALP Guide to Finding and Funding International Public Interest Opportunities, the NALP Finding Employment Opportunities with International Governmental Organizations and the United Nations and the Yale Law School Guide to International Public Interest Careers.
- CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor) is an independent policy and research center housed at the World Bank dedicated to advancing financial access for the world’s poor. See the Microfinance Gateway portal for additional global resources, including a job database.
- International Law Students Association educates students and lawyers around the world in the principles and purposes of international law, international organizations and comparative legal systems. ILSA’s website includes international career resources and networking/educational opportunities.
- Society for International Development is a global forum of individuals and institutions concerned with sustainable economic, social and political development.The SID-Washington chapter offers regional and topical events for international development practitioners, including a career fair for entry-level positions.
- ABA Rule of Law Initiative Internship Program
- Inter-American Development Bank
- International Law Institute
- Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC)
- Organization of American States (OAS)
- U.S. Agency of International Development (USAID)
- Vital Voices
- The World Bank
- U.S. Department of State List of International Organizations