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Centre for Foreign and Comparative Law

Postgraduate Tuition

In 1993 IFCOL introduced the LLM course in Development Law (MDEVLW-9) in keeping with the trend at foreign universities, where development law has become an important and popular field of study. This course, one of its kind, is being offered under the auspices of the Department of Constitutional, International and Indigenous Law in Unisa’s School of Law. At IFCOL it was developed from the experience gained from a community development project, Development Law Strategies in the early nineties.

The course has recently undergone extensive revision for presentation and the revised course deals with the relationship between law and the political, economic and social development of developing countries. Development law emerged as a field of study after World War II. Its relevance as a field of study for African scholars has increased in light of the launch of the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) and the African Union.

Development lawyers grapple with issues such as whether Western models are fundamental or essential to development and the desirability of establishing free market economies, democracy and the rule of law. The course is interdisciplinary in content and students from other disciplines are welcome to register. Government employees, policy-makers, NGOs and academics will find this course intellectually stimulating and of great practical relevance.

The revised LLM in Development Law comprises three sections:

  • Section A: deals with the nature, scope and purposes of development law, its history and the debate surrounding the right to development.
  • Section B:deals with aspects of international development law, focusing on the liberalization of trade, development assistance, and aid and finance.
  • Section C: gives the student between the following two capita selectas
  • Section C1 - Transitional Justice: deals with the democratization of law, the rise of popular justice, and globalization and law; or
  • Section C2 - Land Reform: deals with issues of land redistribution, restitution of land rights and security of land tenure rights. Comparative land reforms from other countries are reviewed.

For more information contact the course leader, Mr Zingisile Jobodwana at