Pacific Law and Culture Conference

Presenter: Hosts: School of Law, Pasifika Law Students’ Society and Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies
  • Date: Monday, 2 July 2018 to Wednesday, 4 July 2018
  • Time: 09:00AM to 09:30PM
  • Location: Rutherford Regional Science and Innovation Centre, Ilam Road, University of Canterbury
  • Ticket: Paid

Hosted by the School of Law, the Pasifika Law Students’ Society and the Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies, the aims of the Pacific Law and Culture Conference are to increase understanding of Pacific legal issues and to strengthen relationships between Pacific legal scholars and students. The Conference provides a platform for emerging and established Pacific legal scholars to consider the critical question of how to make law operate effectively whilst remaining culturally appropriate to the Pacific.

Voices of the Pacific in a Globalised World

In 2018 the theme for the 8th Pacific Law and Culture Conference is Voices of the Pacific in a Globalised World.

This theme raises various questions including:

  • In an increasingly globalised legal world, what can be done to ensure that Indigenous Pacific voices and perspectives are heard locally, nationally and internationally?
  • How can issues of conflict between international law or state law on the one hand, and Pacific culture and/or customary laws on the other be resolved?
  • How can Pacific perspectives be incorporated into the laws of states with large Pacific diaspora?

Keynote speakers

Confirmed keynote speakers are:

  • Justice Fatiaki, Justice of the Supreme Court of Vanuatu. The Honourable Justice Daniel Fatiaki has been a Judge in the Supreme Court of Vanuatu since 2009. He is originally from Fiji, where he was formerly the Chief Justice. Justice Fatiaki studied at the University of South Pacific and obtained a law degree from the University of Auckland. He is admitted as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Courts of New Zealand and Fiji. During his long career he practiced law in New Zealand and Fiji, and served as Crown Counsel in the Director of Public Prosecutions Office in Fiji and as Chairman of the Fiji Law Reform Commission. 
  • Teleiai Dr Lalotoa Mulitalo, Executive Director/CEO of the Samoa Law Reform Commission and author of Law Reform in Plural Societies (Springer, 2017).
  • Dr Claire Slatter, scholar and activist of Fiji. Recent publications include “The New Framework for Pacific Regionalism: Old Kava in a New Tanoa?” in Greg Fry and Sandra Tarte (eds) The New Pacific Diplomacy (ANU Press, Canberra, 2015).

Mooting competition

In addition to paper presentations, there will also be a mooting competition between participating law schools. More information on this will be provided directly to participating law schools.


Conference accommodation

 The Conference will be held at the University of Canterbury (Ilam). See conference website for accommodation options.


We are grateful for the support of the following organisations: New Zealand Law Foundation, Canterbury Law Review Trust, and Bridgeside Chambers, and College of Law.


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