Preface by the Dean
The Faculty was particularly active in the field of research during
2001, which clearly reflects the high premium that is placed on
There has been a steady increase in the number of articles published
in accredited national and international specialist journals. Contributions
were also made to non-accredited journals, books for subject specialists,
and textbooks for students. Special mention should be made of the
involvement of faculty members as co-editors and co-authors in the
comprehensive work entitled Clinical Forensic Medicine and Medical
Jurisprudence, which will be available in electronic format.
Staff members furthermore presented papers at national and international
conferences, while various study trips abroad were also undertaken.
Faculty members contributed to the creation and launching of two
new journals. The African Human Rights Law Journal is a product
of the Centre for Human Rights, which focuses on developments in
the field of human rights in Africa. Some of the dissertations of
students participating in the LLM programme in Human Rights and
Democratisation in Africa have been published in this journal. The
South African Insolvency Law Review is a product of the Centre
for Advanced Corporate and Insolvency Law, in collaboration with
the Rand Afrikaans University. The aim of the journal is to provide
a regularly updated overview of the entire study field of Insolvency
Law, as well as to publish some in-depth articles.
The Faculty is proud of the awards made to some of its members
in recognition for their achievements in research: Professors JMT
Labuschagne and TJ Scott were once again recognised as excellent
academic performers, while Professors CH Heyns and FJ Viljoen each
received a first award in this regard. Prof DG Kleyn and Mr JJ de
Gama received the Mellon Award for the promotion of the latter's
doctoral studies. Professors C Nicholson and K van Marle received
awards from the University's Research Development Programme for
the period 2001-2003. Prof J le Roux was awarded a study and research
scholarship from the Institute of International Public Law and International
Relations, Aristotle University of Thessalonika in Greece for attending
a seminar on International Criminal Law. She is presently engaged
in the development of an LLM module in this field.
Postdoctoral exchange programmes are being managed actively. In
view of the Faculty's co-operation agreement with the Charles University
in Prague, Prof J Pribhan visited the University as postdoctoral
fellow while Prof Van Marle went to Prague to conduct research there.
Prof Van Marle also spent a period of six months as postdoctoral
research fellow at the Research Unit for Legal and Constitutional
Interpretation at the University of Stellenbosch. Prof D Roithmayer
from the University of Illinois (Urbana, Champagne) lectured here
in her place.
The Faculty puts a high premium on the requirement for academic
staff to finish their doctoral studies, and thus three members of
staff (Messrs R Cloete, WP de Villiers and A van der Linde) obtained
the LLD degree during 2001.
In order to stimulate research among personnel, the Faculty has
introduced four prizes from its own funds, which will be awarded
annually, namely a prize for the best article by a junior researcher,
for the best article by a senior researcher, for the best joint
article, and for the best book.
In its effort to pursue excellence the Faculty places special emphasis
on its postgraduate study programmes. As a result of this, the intake
of undergraduate students dropped during 2001, but the number of
postgraduate students increased considerably. The lectured LLM programme
in particular seems to be very popular. This programme has been
restructured to the extent that the scaled-down dissertation was
abolished and replaced by a written research component that is required
in each of the four prescribed modules. The Faculty's LLM committee
is continuously involved in the development of the programme as
well as in the application of quality control.
As far as non-formal training is concerned, three new short courses
were designed and introduced. The different centres in the Faculty
have also been dynamically involved in academic and community service
activities. Under the aegis of the Centre for Human Rights, a second
group of students graduated in the LLM course for Human Rights and
Democratisation in Africa, while staff members of the Centre were
actively involved in a variety of research projects, for example,
a series of publications on socio-economic rights.
A first group of students completed the LLM in Child Law, which
is co-ordinated by the Centre for Child Law. The Centre also succeeded
in supplying a soundtrack in Zulu for its video that prepares and
protects children against sexual abuse. The video has previously
been available in English and Afrikaans only.
The Centre for Advanced Corporate and Insolvency Law was involved
in the completion of the Department of Justice's research project
on administration orders.
Undergraduate students who take part in international moot court
competitions carry out extensive research and receive credits for
the subject Moot Court 420. The students of the Law Faculty did
exceptionally well during 2001 since they achieved a second place
in the All-African Human Rights Moot Court Competition (Pretoria)
and the Commonwealth Moot Court Competition (Sri Lanka). Our team
also won the national round of the Philip Jessup International Law
Moot Court Competition.
The Faculty went through a process of restructuring following the
abolishment of the Department of Legal Pluralism and Hermeneutics.
At present the Faculty consists of the following: Department of
Private Law, Department of Mercantile Law, Department of Public
Law, Department of Procedural Law, Department of Legal History,
Comparative Law and Jurisprudence, and the Centre for Human Rights,
which also functions as an academic department.