Community engagement

Making valuable contributions to our society
We are committed to supporting our communities by contributing to law reform and shaping policy at a local and global level.

We understand the value of building strong partnerships with the communities that surround us. We are dedicated to sharing our expertise and supporting social justice causes.


Our research is closely aligned to current political issues and is aimed at informing public debate. We strive to bring about meaningful change and development to the laws that affect our society.

Some of the ways we are working with our communities include:

  • Responses to child sexual abuse - Working with victims, police, prosecutors, courts, law reform agencies and governments to influence policy change and law reform that recognises the needs and lived experiences of victims of child sexual abuse
  • Legal protection for the world’s most vulnerable - Recommendations for how governments and aid agencies engage with and accommodate persons with disabilities in situations of displacement
  • Confronting the global challenges of climate change – Professor Rosemary Lyster was appointed by the Victorian Government to a three-person independent review committee to review the state's Climate Change Act 2010 and make recommendations with the view to place Victoria as a leader on climate change
  • Creating a healthier food environment – We’re exploring the use of regulatory strategies to prevent diet-related disease and promote healthier diets
  • Putting people before profit – Our researchers are measuring the human rights performance of financial services entities such as banks, funds management, insurance, superannuation
  • Protecting some of society’s most marginalised - Professor Gail Mason has provided the most comprehensive picture of the patterns of hate crime in Australia to date
  • Indigenous voice in law – Dr Nicole Watson is working with communities to produce the missing Indigenous judgment in 20 decisions of Australian superior courts over the course of the 20th century.

Student social justice activities

At the Sydney Law School, our students are engaged in a range of social justice law reform activities. These include:

  • Law Reform Program - students volunteer to conduct legal research for NGOs and public agencies in support of their activity
  • Sydney University Law Society (SULS) social justice programs 
  • Law clinics and electives - students work with a range of organisations through our law clinics and other electives.

Find out more about our student social justice activities.


Academic visits

Our academic staff and students can visit schools to:

  • make presentations on studying law
  • visit schools to deliver presentations to students interested in pursuing a career in law
  • provide curriculum enrichment on law and be involved in school career events. 

Widening Participation and Outreach

We are actively involved with the Widening Participation and Outreach program, an initiative that seeks to address the under-representation of students from low socio-economic backgrounds, rural communities and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

Wingara Mura – Bunga Barrabugu

The Wingara Mura – Bunga Barrabugu strategy outlines our commitment to creating higher education and leadership opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

We are involved in the summer and winter programs that give high school students the opportunity to visit the University to learn more about their career and study options in law.

Peter Finneran

Head, Strategic Partnerships and External Engagement
  • Room 337 The New Law Building F10