UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The Amity Law School in Noida, India, hosted a brand-new Public Law Lecture Series from September 5-7. The series, organized by the Amity Centre for Gender Justice and Child Rights, featured a presentation by Penn State Law Dean for Graduate and International Programs Stephen Barnes and three lectures by assistant professor Jud Mathews.
The event marked Mathews’ first trip to India. “This was a completely new experience for me, and a really great one at that,” Mathews said. “I had no idea what to expect, and now I’m hoping for an opportunity to go back.”
Mathews—a professor of civil procedure, administrative law, and constitutional law—delivered talks on successive days on constitutional controversies in administrative law, judicial deference to agency decisions, and the principle of proportionality in administrative law. Mathews said he was impressed by the Amity students’ knowledge of American constitutional and administrative law and their thoughtful questions following his remarks, which led to insightful conversation on a wide range of legal topics.
“There were some great relationships that blossomed on a lot of different levels,” Mathews said. “These students at Amity Law School thinking about the next steps in their legal careers now know more about Penn State Law and our programs that are available to them. I also made some great connections with faculty there, several of whom are now considering visiting us here in University Park as visiting scholars.”
Mathews said he learned a good deal about Indian constitutional law from the professors and students at Amity Law School, and was struck by parallels between Indian constitutional frameworks and those of other countries. He hopes to continue learning about Indian constitutional and administrative law, and to draw on this knowledge in his research and teaching at Penn State Law.
The students at Amity Law School also treated Mathews to a tour of the Delhi area during his time there, which he said he greatly enjoyed and gave him a deeper appreciation for Indian history and culture.
“Each day, I would speak in the morning and then go out in town with the students, have a great lunch, and see some spectacular sites,” Mathews said. “I was able to see an extraordinary Hindu temple, the shrine of a Sufi saint, the site where Gandhi is buried, and more.
“I got to take in a lot in just a few days, and I really enjoyed being able to live there for a week and meet a lot of wonderful people.”
In addition to the talks at Amity Law School, Mathews spoke to groups at Sharda and Symbiosis Law Schools and to the India Bar Foundation.