History of the Faculty


The Faculty of Law is part of the National University of Singapore (NUS), the oldest tertiary institution in Singapore. NUS traces its rich history to the founding of the Straits Settlements and Federated Malay States Government Medical School in 1905. The Medical School was renamed the King Edward VII College of Medicine in 1912. In 1949, it merged with Raffles College (itself set up in 1929) to form the University of Malaya.

Dr LA Sheridan
Dean, 1956-1962

The roots of the Faculty of Law lie in the establishment of the Department of Law in the then University of Malaya in 1956. The first law students were admitted to the Bukit Timah campus of the University in 1957. In 1959, the Department attained Faculty status with Professor Lionel Astor (“Lee”) Sheridan serving as the founding Dean. The pioneer class of law students graduated in 1961, counting among its most illustrious members Professor Tommy Koh (Ambassador-at-Large and former Dean), former Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong, former Dean Thio Su-Mien, and Emeritus Professor Koh Kheng Lian.

In the early 1960s, the governments of Singapore and Malaya announced their desire for the Singapore and Kuala Lumpur divisions of the University of Malaya to become autonomous national universities in their respective territories. Thus, on 1 January 1962, the University of Singapore was born. Singapore was admitted to the Federation of Malaysia on 16 September 1963. The union lasted until 9 August 1965, when Singapore became an independent republic. Throughout this period and thereafter, the Faculty of Law continued to flourish as part of the University of Singapore. In 1980, the University of Singapore and Nanyang University (Nantah) were merged to form the National University of Singapore (NUS). With that, the Faculty of Law became part of the modern NUS, simultaneously moving to its new Kent Ridge campus.

A quarter century later, it was announced that the Bukit Timah campus would be returned to NUS. The Faculty of Law, the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, and several research institutes made the move from Kent Ridge back to the hallowed grounds of Bukit Timah, opening its doors there once again on 17 July 2006.



Arrival of Dr Lionel Astor Sheridan
Dr Lionel Astor Sheridan takes up his duties as the first Professor of Law and Head of the Law Department at the University of Malaya.


Admission of first law students
The first law students are admitted to the Department of Law. Among them are former Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong ’61, former ambassador to the United Nations Tommy Koh ’61, Emeritus Professor Koh Kheng Lian ’61, and former Dean Thio Su Mien ’61.

Dr La Sheridan
Dr Lionel A Sheridan,
Dean 1956 - 1962


Origins of the Singapore Journal of Legal Studies
The University of Malaya Law Review is published (the journal was later renamed the Malaya Law Review and subsequently, the Singapore Journal of Legal Studies, which continues to this day).

Lionel A Sheridan elected as first Dean

The Department of Law attains Faculty status and Professor Sheridan is elected as its first Dean.



The Government of the Federation officially recognises the University of Malaya law degree as an initial qualification to enter the legal profession. The Asia Foundation generously endows the Constitutional Law Professorship. Professor Harry E Groves, former Dean of the Southern Texas University Law School, becomes the first Constitutional Law Professor.

Pioneer batch of law graduates.


Professor Leslie C Green is appointed to the newly-created Chair of International Law, and Commercial Law is introduced as a principal subject.
The pioneer batch of 22 law students graduates; 8 of them subsequently join the Faculty as assistant lecturers or part-time teachers.


University of Singapore formed
The University of Singapore is established following the reconstitution of the University of Malaya.
Dr BL Chua
Dr BL Chua
Dean, 1962-63
B L Chua appointed as Dean
Lee Sheridan leaves to take up the Chair of Comparative Law at Queen’s University in Belfast. Chua Boon Lan (B L Chua) succeeds Sheridan as Dean of the Faculty.
Prof Harry E Groves
Prof Harry E Groves
Dean, 1963-64


Founding Dean Sheridan honoured
The University confers an honorary L.L.D. on founding Dean Lee Sheridan.

Harry E Groves appointed as Dean
Harry E Groves succeeds BL Chua as Dean. Groves secures a grant of US$300,000 from the Ford Foundation to purchase books for the Law Library, to institutionalise scholarships and to fund research projects and staff recruitment.
Prof Leslie C Green
Prof Leslie C Green
Dean, 1964-65
Leslie C Green takes over as Dean
On 16th September, Singapore joins the Federation of Malaysia. In November, Leslie C Green succeeds Harry Groves as Dean.
Prof JL Montrose
Prof J L Montrose
Dean, 1965-66


Faculty names James Louis Montrose as Dean
On 9th August, Singapore becomes an independent republic. In September, Leslie Green leaves the Faculty and is succeeded by James Louis Montrose.
Prof GW Bartholomew
Prof GW Bartholomew
Dean, 1966-68


Geoffrey W Bartholomew takes over as Dean
James Montrose completes his term as Dean and Ford Foundation Visiting Professor and is succeeded by Geoffrey W Bartholomew


Ford Foundation Grant for Development established
The Ford Foundation grants US$450,000 to develop the Faculty by providing for visiting professors and teaching fellows, advanced training and teaching experience for local staff, and consultant services for the Law Library and its expansion.
Dr Thio Su Mien
Dr Thio Su Mien ’61
Dean, 1968-1971


Dr Thio Su Mien ’61 becomes youngest appointed Dean
Dr Thio Su Mien ‘61, the Faculty’s first alumnus to join its teaching staff in 1962, is appointed Vice-Dean. At the close of Geoffrey Bartholomew’s term as Dean at the end of the year, Thio is elected Dean, making her the first woman, the first local graduate, and the youngest person ever to be Dean of the Faculty.


Birth of Singapore Law Review
The student journal, Me Judice, is transformed into the Singapore Law Review (SLR). The SLR continues to this day as a student-run publication.


Inauguration of Braddell Memorial Lecture Series
The Faculty inaugurates a new public lecture series, the Braddell Memorial Lecture. The Lecture was named after the late Dato’ Sir Roland Braddell, the scion of Singapore’s most illustrious legal family.
Prof Tommy Koh
Prof Tommy Koh ’61
Dean, 1971-1974


Tommy Koh ’61 takes over as Dean
Thio Su Mien leaves for private practice and is succeeded as Dean by her classmate, Tommy Koh ’61. Koh holds the distinction of being the first graduate to have attained First Class Honours from the Faculty. At the time of his appointment, Koh had just returned from his stint as Singapore’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations.


Faculty participates in Jessup Moot
The Faculty sends its first team to the Philip C Jessup International Law Moot Competition in the United States, which is held annually in Washington DC. The Jessup Moot is now regarded as the most prestigious international mooting competition in the world. To date, the NUS Faculty of Law holds the record as the law school with the most number of victories at the moot – four in total.
Prof S Jayakumar
Prof S Jayakumar ’63
Dean, 1974-1980


S Jayakumar ’63 succeeds Tommy Koh as Dean
Jayakumar has been serving the university as a law lecturer from 1964 to 1971. After three years of serving as a diplomat, Jayakumar returns to the Faculty as Dean
Prof Tan Sook Yee
Prof Tan Sook Yee
Dean, 1980-1987


Faculty appoints Tan Sook Yee as Dean
Jayakumar leaves the Faculty to enter politics. He is succeeded by Tan Sook Yee as Dean. Tan Sook Yee has been teaching Property Law at the Faculty since 1964.
Formation of National University of Singapore
With the merger of the University of Singapore and Nanyang University, the Faculty becomes part of the modern National University of Singapore.


Youngest judge appointed to High Court
Justice Lai Kew Chai ’66 was appointed as Judge of the Supreme Court on 1 July 1981. At 40 years of age, he was the youngest judge to be appointed to the High Court



First Philip C Jessup win
Represented by V K Rajah ’82, Davinder Singh ’82, Jimmy Yim ’82 and Steven Chong ’82, the Faculty wins the Philip C Jessup International Law Moot Competition for the first time.


Second win for NUS Law team in Jessup Competition
NUS Law wins the Jessup Competition for the second time, represented by Anjali Iyer ’85, Lim Kien Thye ’85, Mohan Pillay ’85, Prithipal Singh ’85 and Eleanor Wong ’85.
Justice Tan Lee Meng
Justice Tan Lee Meng ’72
Dean, 1987-1992


Tan Lee Meng ’72 appointed Dean
Tan Lee Meng ’72 succeeds Tan Sook Yee as Dean. As Dean, Tan recruited many young faculty who later became the core of NUS Law.


Creation of the Singapore Journal of Legal Studies
The Malaya Law Review is renamed the Singapore Journal of Legal Studies.
Assoc Prof Chin Tet Yung
Assoc Prof Chin Tet Yung
Dean, 1992-2001


Chin Tet Yung takes over as Dean
Tan Lee Meng is succeeded by Chin Tet Yung as Dean. Tan is appointed the University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor, and later a Judge of the Supreme Court of Singapore. (In 2013 he returns to NUS Law after 16 years in Public Service.)


NUS Law establishes David Marshall Professorship
The David Marshall Professorship is established in honour of David Marshall, pre-eminent criminal lawyer and also Singapore’s first Chief Minister and subsequent Ambassador to France. Professor Francis Reynolds of Oxford becomes the first David Marshall Professor.


NUS Law wins the Jessup Competition a third time
Represented by Ang Cheng Hock ’94, Jayanthi Sadanandan ’95, Tan Ken Hwee ’94, Michael Ewing-Chow ’94, and Christopher Daniel ’94, NUS Law wins the Jessup Competition for the third time.

Development of exchange programmes
NUS Law begins to develop student exchange programmes with leading law schools in Canada, Australia, England, and the United States.

First Female Judge of the Supreme Court
Justice Lai Siu Chiu ’72 became the first female judge to be appointed to the Supreme Court.




Establishment of the Asia-Pacific Centre for Environmental Law
The Asia-Pacific Centre for Environmental Law (APCEL) is established by NUS Law together with the Commission on Environmental Law (CEL) of the World Conservation Union (IUCN), in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
C J Koh Professorship
NUS Law receives a $2 million donation from retired lawyer and philanthropist, C J Koh, to set up the C J Koh Professorship in Law. The late Mr Koh’s additional bequests finance the renovation of the Law Library, now renamed the C J Koh Law Library.


Singapore Journal of International and Comparative Law
NUS Law launches its second academic journal, the Singapore Journal of International and Comparative Law.


Establishment of the Centre for Commercial Law Studies
The Centre for Commercial Law Studies builds on NUS Law’s extensive experience in commercial law teaching and research and involves a range of faculty whose interests cover a wide spectrum of commercial law subjects.
Prof Tan Cheng Han S.C.
Prof Tan Cheng Han S.C.
Dean, 2001-2011


Tan Cheng Han ’87 becomes Dean
Tan Cheng Han ’87 succeeds Chin Tet Yung as Dean. Prof Tan teaches Contract Law and Company Law, and is today Chair of NUS Law’s Centre for Law & Business. His other appointments include being Chairman of the Singapore Media Literacy Council, and Chairman of the Advisory Committee on Move-On and Filming Orders
First law school to win the Jessup Competition four times
NUS Law becomes the first law school in the world to win the prestigious Philip C Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition four times. The Faculty is represented by Sangeeta Subbrahmanyam ’01, Chan Ho Ming ’01, Kabir Singh ’02, Davinia Aziz ’02 and Jason Chan ’02.


Yong Shook Lin Professorship established
NUS Law receives a gift of $2 million from Chief Justice Yong Pung How LLD ’01 and Mrs Yong Wei Woo to establish the Yong Shook Lin Professorship in Intellectual Property Law.

First copy of LawLink
The first issue of LawLink – NUS Law’s alumni magazine – is produced.

Launch of Legal Writing Programme
The Faculty launches a comprehensive Legal Writing Programme – a first in Asia - to equip law students with analytical, research, writing and communication skills.

Debut in Willem C Vis Moot
In its debut effort, NUS Law is the first Asian law school to win the Willem C Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in Vienna.


Specialist Masters programmes
The Faculty launches three specialist Masters (L.L.M.) programmes in corporate and financial services law; international and comparative law; and intellectual property and technology law.

Professorship in Maritime Law
The Faculty receives a gift of $4 million from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore to endow a Professorship in Maritime Law.

Asian Law Institute launched
The Faculty establishes the Asian Law Institute (ASLI) with nine other leading law schools in Asia. The ASLI Secretariat is housed at the Faculty.
The Faculty launches a specialist Masters (L.L.M.) programme in Chinese Law with its ASLI partners, Peking University and the East China University of Politics and Law.


Singapore Year Book of International Law
The Singapore Year Book of International Law succeeds the Singapore Journal of International & Comparative Law, thereby completing a process which began with the first scholarly documentation of Singapore's international law practice in 1977.

Partnership with East China University of Politics and Law
The Faculty partners one of China 's top law schools, the East China University of Politics and Law (ECUPL), to offer a specialist Masters of Law (L.L.M.) degree in International Business Law in Shanghai from July 2005.

Champions of Asia Cup International Law Moot Court Competition
NUS Faculty of Law wins the Asia Cup International Law Moot Court Competition

International Humanitarian Law Moot victory
The NUS Law team, sponsored by the Singapore Red Cross, emerges as Champions in the 2nd International Humanitarian Law (IHL) Moot Competition held in Hong Kong.


Double degree programmes
NUS Law launches two double honours degree programmes with the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, and NUS Business School consecutively: Economics and Law, Business Administration and Law.

Space law victory
NUS Law wins the Asia Pacific Regional of the Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Competition.

Return to Bukit Timah Campus
It is announced that the Bukit Timah Campus will be returned to NUS. NUS Law makes its historic move home to Bukit Timah, where it all began, the following year.


Oxford IP Moot victory
NUS Law participates in the Oxford International Intellectual Property Mooting Competition for the first time and beats leading universities to win it.


Celebrating 50 years of Legal Education in Singapore
From modest beginnings, NUS Law is now recognised as Asia’s Global Law School. A series of events are held to commemorate this milestone, culminating in the 50th Anniversary Gala Dinner.

Partnership with NYU
NUS Law partners with New York University School of Law to launch an LL.B.-LL.M. concurrent degree programme, enabling NUS Law undergraduates to complete their degree and earn a Master of Laws degree from NYU in four years. A similar programme enables students to earn an LL.B. from NUS Law and a J.D. from NYU in five years.
NUS Law and NYU also launch a dual Master of Laws programme - NYU@NUS - where students are based in Singapore and earn an LL.M. from NUS (with or without specialization), and an LL.M. in Global Business Law from NYU in one year.


Center for Transnational Legal Studies created
NUS Law is a founding member of the Center for Transnational Legal Studies (CTLS), a London-based joint venture with premier law schools from around the world.

Law of Obligations
NUS Law is the first law school in Asia to host the prestigious biennial conference on the Law of Obligations (“Obligations IV”).


Assoc Prof Chan Wing Cheong
becomes the inaugural
Amaladass Fellow


Victory in the Copenhagen Competition: Protocol on Climate Change
The NUS Law team's submission is presented to the Danish Prime Minister and other key players involved in the negotiations for the Copenhagen Protocol.

Inaugural Asian Law Deans Forum
NUS Law hosts the first Asian Law Deans Forum on Legal Education. Supported by the Temasek Foundation, it brings together 45 deans and leaders of law schools across the region

Amaladass Fellowship
NUS Law receives a gift of S$1 million from an anonymous donor to establish the Amaladass Fellowship in memory of the late legal practitioner Mr M Amaladass. Associate Professor Chan Wing Cheong is appointed the inaugural Amaladass Fellow.

Prof Tan Yock Lin
is appointed as the inaugural
Geoffrey Bartholomew Professor.

Professor Walter Woon ’81
is appointed as
David Marshall Professor.


Clinical Legal Education Programme launched
NUS Law creates Singapore’s first Clinical Legal Education Programme to promote hands-on learning and inculcate pro bono spirit in law students.

Appointment of the Inaugural Geoffrey Bartholomew Professor
NUS Law launches the Geoffrey Bartholomew Professorship in honour of former Dean Professor Geoffrey Bartholomew. Professor Tan Yock Lin is appointed the inaugural Geoffrey Bartholomew Professor.

Former AG Prof Walter Woon ’81 Appointed as David Marshall Professor
Former Attorney-General Professor Walter Woon ’81 is appointed as the David Marshall Professor.

Association of Transnational Law Schools (ATLAS)
NUS Law is invited to join ATLAS, a leading consortium of law schools focusing on doctoral programmes.

Ella Cheong Intellectual Property Scholarship & Student Loan Fund
NUS Law receives a $1 million gift from lawyer Ms Ella Cheong to support awards in Intellectual Property law and provide financial assistance through bursary awards and student loans.

Class of 1961 celebrates 50th Anniversary


Partnership with Boston University
NUS Law partners with Boston University (BU) to allow selected NUS law students to pursue an LL.M. at BU during their fourth year of undergraduate studies.

Partnership with ICJ and World Bank
NUS Law partners with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and World Bank to create fellowships for graduates to work in The Hague and Washington, DC.

Pioneer class celebrates 50th anniversary
NUS Law’s pioneer class celebrates the 50th anniversary of their graduation with the establishment of the Lionel A Sheridan Professorship in honour of the Faculty’s founding dean.

The Asian Journal of International Law is launched
The journal of the Asian Society of International Law is produced by NUS Law, with Profs Simon Chesterman and Simon Tay as two of the three founding editors.

Joel Lee wins Outstanding Educator Award
This is the highest honour awarded by NUS for teaching excellence.

Remembering Madam Kwa Geok Choo
NUS Law launches a series of initiatives to recognise Madam Kwa, including a professorship in property law, a bursary, a scholarship, and the Kwa Geok Choo Distinguished Visitors Programme

Prof Simon Chesterman
Dean, 2012-present

Prof Roger Fisher,
a pioneer of modern
negotiation practice
and teaching.


Simon Chesterman takes over as Dean
Prof Simon Chesterman is appointed Dean. He joined NUS Law from NYU in 2007, becoming Vice Dean of Graduate Studies in 2010, overseeing all of the graduate programmes at NUS Law, including the Master of Laws and Doctor of Philosophy degrees.

University Scholars Programme (USP)
NUS Law joins as USP’s 7th Partner, offering selected students a deeper interdisciplinary dimension to their classroom and curricular experiences.

Centre for Asian Legal Studies created
The Centre is the first of its kind to be established in Asia, building on NUS Law’s collaborations with other law schools around the region as the Secretariat of the Asian Law Institute (ASLI).

Singapore International Arbitration Academy launched
NUS Law and the Centre for International Law stage the inaugural Singapore International Arbitration Academy.

Roger Fisher Prize in Negotiation established
The new prize honours Professor Roger Fisher, one of the pioneers of modern negotiation practice and teaching.

Wee Chong Jin Scholarships in Law
The Wee Chong Jin Scholarships in Law will support two scholars a year, focusing on those students who are active in community or charity work, and display a spirit of sportsmanship and collegiality.

Mooting successes
NUS Law students win the International Negotiation Competition in Belfast, the inaugural International Banking and Investment Law (IBAIL) Moot Court Competition in Jaipur and the Asian British Parliamentary Debating Championships in Jakarta.

Expanding Pro Bono
NUS Law establishes a Pro Bono Office to oversee the growing number of student pro bono activities and to look into the implementation of a more comprehensive programme.

Mentoring the future
The Law Alumni Mentor Programme (LAMP) is launched, linking first and second year students with recent alumni to provide insights and guidance to the practice of law.

A new Advisory Council
Former Dean, Professor S Jayakumar ’63, chairs a new Advisory Council to provide counsel and support to the decanal team, as well as acting as a liaison between the Law School and the legal profession in Singapore and internationally.

Emeritus Professor Peter Ellinger.

Professor Saw Swee Hock

Mr Lee Kuan Yew and
NUS Chancellor President Tony Tan,
together with NUS President Tan Chorh Chuan.

Dean Simon Chesterman
addresses the gathering
of over 80 law school leaders
at the Global Deans Forum.


Centre for Law and Business launched
The Centre for Law and Business seeks to enhance and promote research and educational opportunities for faculty, students, legal practitioners and business executives who share a common interest in the fields of Law, Business and Economics.

Peter Ellinger Visiting Professorship
NUS Law establishes the Peter Ellinger Visiting Professorship to honour Emeritus Professor Peter Ellinger’s immense contribution to the development of legal education in Singapore.

The Riady Scholarship
NUS Law partners with the Riady family to create scholarships for outstanding Indonesians looking to further their law graduate studies at NUS Law.

H L Wee Scholarship & H L Wee Mooting Fund
The Wee family pledges an endowed gift to NUS Law in honour of the late Harry L Wee to create a scholarship and funds to support NUS Law’s mooting teams participating in international competitions.

Saw Swee Hock Centennial Professorship in Law
The Saw Swee Hock Centennial Professorship in Law is created through a donation from Prof Saw Swee Hock. It will be used to appoint and support a strategic hire to raise education and research in NUS Law to greater heights.

Honorary Degree for Lee Kuan Yew
NUS awards an honorary doctor of laws degrees to Singapore’s founding Prime Minister. Dean Chesterman serves as the public orator, delivering a citation in Mr Lee’s honour.

NUS Law hosts inaugural Global Deans Forum
Organised by NUS Law and the International Association of Law Schools, the Forum attracts more than 80 law school leaders who adopt the “Singapore Declaration on Global Standards and Outcomes of a Legal Education”.

Elizabeth Haub Prize
Koh Kheng Lian ’61 receives the Elizabeth Haub Prize for Environmental Law, in recognition of her important and pioneering contributions to its development and evolution.

Former Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong ’61 joins NUS Law
Mr Chan becomes NUS Law’s first Distinguished Fellow. He was a member of the inaugural batch of law students admitted in 1957 to what was then the University of Malaya.

Recognition by the profession
At the Singapore Academy of Law’s 25th Anniversary Dinner, Profs Ng-Loy Wee Loon ’87 and Goh Yihan ’06 receive the Singapore Law Merit Award. Profs Debbie Ong ’89 and Eleanor Wong ’85 are presented the SAL Merit Award.

National Day honours
Associate Dean Goh Mia Yang ’92 is awarded the Public Administration Medal (Bronze). This year’s ceremony features Selena Tan ’94 as the creative director.

Sheridan Fellowships launched
Named after NUS Law’s founding Dean, Professor Lionel (“Lee”) Sheridan, the initiative is aimed at graduates with experience or expertise in Singapore Law who have an interest in pursuing a career in academia.

Prof Jeffrey Pinsler

Prof Ho Hock Lai '89

Launch of Centre for Law & Business

Launch of Centre for Banking & Finance Law

Assoc Prof Debbie Ong


Curriculum Review implemented
The review of the curriculum concludes a multi-year process led by Dean Chesterman and Vice Dean for Academic Affairs Prof Ng-Loy Wee Loon. Changes from August 2014 include a reduced focus on grades, greater exposure to civil law, and more opportunities for experiential learning.

Prof Jeffrey Pinsler Appointed as Geoffrey Bartholomew Professor
Prof Pinsler takes on his new title on 1 April 2014 from Prof Tan Yock Lin who was the inaugural Geoffrey Bartholomew Professor since 2010.

Appointment of Inaugural Amaladass Professor of Criminal Justice
Built upon the Amaladass Fellowship that was first established in 2009 in memory of the late legal practitioner Mr M Amaladass, the generous contribution of the anonymous donor has enabled the set-up of the Amaladass Professorship of Criminal Justice. The honour of being appointed as the inaugural Amaladass Professor of Criminal Justice went to Prof Ho Hock Lai ’89.

Launch of First Online Portal for Pro Bono Projects
'Start Now Law', an online portal for pro bono projects, is launched to encourage and enhance students’ involvement in legal pro bono activities. The portal is the first of its kind on pro bono work in Singapore. Students and pro bono host organisations can post pro bono opportunities in the portal and students can sign up for these opportunities directly with the host organisations. Students will also be able to track their own pro bono activities on the portal throughout their education at NUS Law, which they can present as a record to future employers. Upon completing the pro bono activities, students will also be presented with certificates of participation.

Launch of Centre for Law & Business (CLB)
The Centre for Law & Business is set up to promote research and educational opportunities in Business Law. The centre is helmed by two notable experts in law and business - Professor Tan Cheng Han from NUS Law; and Associate Professor Lan Luh Luh, who holds a joint appointment with NUS Law and NUS Business School.


Launch of Centre for Banking & Finance Law (CBFL)
The centre will focus on important aspects of banking and finance law and regulation, including financial industry reform, new regulations, and private law issues. Leading the centre is Associate Professor Dora Neo as Director of CBFL, and Deputy Director, Associate Professor Alexander Loke.


Assoc Prof Debbie Ong Appointed as Judicial Commissioner of the High Court
Assoc Prof Ong is one of four who have been appointed as Judicial Commissioners, of which she is the only academic. She begins her two-year term of office with effect from 17 November 2014. An expert in family law, she has been active in serving the legal profession and the community. She has been appointed amicus curiae to the Supreme Court of Singapore in family matters and was also a volunteer Family Court Mediator in the Family Court for a decade. In recognition of her work to the legal profession, she was awarded the Singapore Academy of Law Merit Award and the Legal Aid Bureau Amicus Award in 2013.



Prof Alec Stone Sweet


Former Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong


Winning team for the Herbert Smith Freehills Competition Law Moot 2015


International Maritime Law Arbitration Moot Team 2015

Launch of Centre for Maritime Law


Prof Alec Stone Sweet Appointed Inaugural Saw Swee Hock Centennial Professor in Law
Professor Alec Stone Sweet, an internationally renowned professor of comparative constitutional law and comparative politics, begins his new appointment at NUS Law in January 2016. Prof Stone Sweet who was tenured at the Yale Law School since 2004, has accepted a tenured full-time position at NUS Law as the Inaugural Saw Swee Hock Centennial Professor in Law.


Former CJ Mr Chan Sek Keong Appointed as NUS Pro-Chancellor

Mr Chan Sek Keong, former CJ of Singapore has been appointed as Pro-Chancellor of the University. The appointment made by Dr Tony Tan Keng Yam, President of the Republic of Singapore and NUS Chancellor, takes effect from 29 April 2015.




NUS Law Students Win Inaugural Herbert Smith Freehills Competition Law Moot 2015
Final year law students Jeremiah Lau, Benjamin Wong and Lisa Tan beat teams from University of Helsinki, Maastricht University, University of Leeds, as well as the competition’s host university King's College London, to reach the finals where they triumphed over the team from University of Amsterdam to clinch the champion title. The team also impressed the international panel of judges, recording the highest score among all 12 teams at the end of the preliminary rounds. Lisa Tan wins the Best Oralist prize, achieving a perfect score of 50 out of 50, while Jeremiah Lau and Benjamin Wong were two out of four runners-up.

NUS Law Wins 16th International Maritime Law Arbitration Moot 2015
The NUS Law team comprising Ms Chow Qilei Cassandra, a fourth-year NUS law student, and recent graduates Ms Syazana Yahya, Mr Tay Jia En, Mr Dinesh Sabapathy and Ms Hannah Tay Shi-en, beat the team from University of Hong Kong to clinch the champion title. NUS Law also won the Oral Rounds of the competition.

The team defeated Erasmus University, Universidad Carlos III De Madrid, Gujarat National Law University and University of Sydney en route to the finals. This is the fourth time NUS Law has won the competition. The faculty’s team won the competition when it was first initiated in 2000, and subsequently in 2001 and 2010. NUS teams were runners-up in 2004 and 2013.

Collaboration with MPA on the Establishment of Centre for Maritime Law (CML) & Professorship in Maritime Law
CML will focus on commercial maritime law. Established with funding from the MPA and the Ministry of Law, CML’s primary focus will be to spearhead maritime law research in Singapore and in the region, as well as enhance the knowledge and expertise amongst the shipping community in Singapore. It will also support and enhance the teaching of maritime law among undergraduates and postgraduate students. The centre is led by Professor Stephen Girvin, and he is joined by Associate Professor Paul Myburgh, formerly of the University of Auckland, as Deputy Director of the centre.

Professor Girvin, who has been a faculty member of NUS Law since 2008, was appointed as the inaugural MPA Professor in Maritime Law.

















IASLA moot team 2016


Speaker of Parliament, Mdm Halimah Yacob ’78






Asia Cup Moot Court Competition team 2016


Establishment of Pro Bono Awards
The Pro Bono Champion Award recognises young alumni of NUS Law who have demonstrated exceptional leadership and made significant contributions towards pro bono work.

The Pro Bono Leadership Awards recognise law students who have shown outstanding leadership and commitment towards pro bono work on a sustained basis, and whose contributions have led to significant developments in pro bono opportunities for law students.

Two new grants - NUS Law Class of 1992 Pro Bono Award and the RHTLaw Taylor Wessing Subhas Anandan Pro Bono Award – are also established to provide financial support for student pro bono projects.

More details here

Six New Prizes Set-up to Recognise Students Who Excel in Their Subject Fields
The subject prizes recognise students who excel in six subjects, namely intellectual property law, carriage of goods by sea, charterparties, international commercial litigation, law of torts and freedom of speech. These awards have been established through generous gifts totalling S$90,000 from institutions and donors who have a keen interest in legal education and the nurturing of top legal talent.

More details here.


NUS Law Tops IASLA Space Law Moot Court Competition
NUS Law takes top prize at the International Air and Space Law Academy (IASLA) Space Law Moot Court Competition. The team of Year 2 students - Kiu Yan Yu ’18, Ong Chee Yeow ’18, Ephraim Tan ’18 and Manfred Lum ’18 were presented the trophy by Dr Ricky Lee, the Principal Administrator of the IASLA Space Law Moot.


Halimah Yacob ’78 Conferred Honorary Doctor of Laws
Speaker of Parliament, Mdm Halimah Yacob ’78 was conferred the Honorary Doctor of Laws at this year’s main Commencement ceremony on 7 July at the University Cultural Centre. The honorary degree is in recognition of her outstanding contributions to Singapore and the community, and was presented to Mdm Halimah by NUS Chancellor and President of Singapore, Dr Tony Tan Keng Yam.

NUS Law Team Wins Nuremberg Moot Court Competition
The NUS Law team were the overall champions at the Nuremberg Moot Court Competition organised by the International Nuremberg Principles Academy, Nuremberg and the Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen-Nuremberg. Victor Leong ’16, Joshua Hiew ’17, Mehaerun Simaa ’16 and Hairul Hakkim ’16 won after defeating teams from the United States, Pakistan, Rwanda, the United Kingdom and Brazil. Joshua Hiew ’17 received the additional honour of being awarded Best Speaker for the Final Round.



Champions of Asia Cup Moot Court Competition
After an absence of six years, Team NUS Law marked its return to the Asia Cup Moot Court competition with stunning success. The team, comprising Kiu Yan Yu '18, Dana Chang '18, Ephraim Tan '18, Ong Chee Yeow '18 and Charlotte Wang '18, pulled off a clean sweep of the top prizes including the Best Overall Team, Best Memorial and Best Oralist (Dana Chang ’18). This is only the third time in the Cup’s 19-year history that a team has managed to achieve such a feat.

APCEL Celebrates 20th Anniversary
The Asia-Pacific Centre for Environmental Law (APCEL) celebrated its 20th Anniversary on 10 November 2016 at the Shaw Foundation Alumni House, NUS (Kent Ridge Campus), together with two degree programmes on the environment – the MSc (Environmental Management) [MEM] and the Bachelor in Environmental Studies (BES) programmes which celebrated their 15th and 5th Anniversaries respectively. The highlight of the celebrations was a joint conference on “Attaining the Sustainable Development Goals – Environmental Law, Policy and Management” that took place from 9 to 11 November 2016.








Winning team of Lex Infinitum 2017



Air Law Moot Team 2017





PM Lee, Dean Simon Chesterman and members of the Barker family


Class of 1961 with the Class of 2017







Prof James Penner

The Lamp of the Law: 60 Years of Legal Education at NUS Law



Singapore Academy of Law Undergraduate Scholarship for Needy Students Established
The scholarship was established through a generous gift from the Singapore Academy of Law (SAL). The scholarship which will amount to approximately $300,000 over an initial term of 5 years aims to enable outstanding students who are financially needy to have the opportunity to read law.

More details here.

NUS Law wins Lex Infinitum 2017
The team of Kok Chun Hou ’17, Joshua Woo ’17 and Lee Yew Boon ’19 was awarded Best Overall Team at Lex Infinitum 2017. Lex Infinitum is an international Mediation and Negotiation Competition hosted by the VM Salgaocar College of Law in Goa, India. The 2017 iteration featured 24 shortlisted teams from law schools all around the world.

Launch Guidebook on Practice of Muslim Law
Speaker of Parliament Madam Halimah Yacob ’78 launched the new guidebook by NUS Law students entitled “Navigating Muslim Law in Singapore” at the student-run Syariah Law Forum 2017, which was held in partnership with I.R.B. Law LLP, NUS Muslim Society, NUS Pro Bono Group and ARLC Law Corporation.


International Air Law Moot Competition Champions
The NUS Law team - comprising fourth year students Kelvin Choo '17, Charlene Wee '17 and Lim Hao Jie '17 - defeated the Indian national champion, the West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences (NUJS), to lift the tournament trophy.

NUS Law Wins IMLAM Competition for the 5th Time
The team featuring Douglas Lok '17, Nicholas Tan '18, Law Jia Hao '17, Leung Liwen '17 and Wang Yufei '17, won the hard-fought Grand Final against the University of Queensland (UQ) on 5 July 2017. Douglas Lok was also named “Best Speaker in the General Rounds”.

This was NUS Law's fifth win in this competition; the previous wins were in 2000, 2001, 2010, and 2015 (runners-up in 2004 and 2013).

Launch of EW Barker Centre for Law & Business and EW Barker Bursary
NUS Law recognised the legacy of Mr EW Barker, Singapore’s first and longest-serving Law Minister, by renaming the Centre for Law & Business (CLB) after him and launching a student bursary in his honour. Singapore Prime Minister Mr Lee Hsien Loong officially launched these initiatives in the presence of Mrs Gloria Barker, wife of the late Mr Barker, and members of the Barker family at an event held at the NUS Bukit Timah Campus.




Commencement 2017: 60th Anniversary of 1st Intake
This year marks the 60th Anniversary of the first intake of Law students at NUS and the faculty is particularly delighted to welcome several members from this first cohort (the Class of 1961) who were present to share the celebrations.

Presiding over the ceremony was former Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong '61, NUS Pro-Chancellor, and the ceremony's guest speaker was the Honourable V.K. Rajah SC '82, former Attorney-General and Judge of Appeal. The Class of 1961 were also represented by Ambassador-at-Large, Professor Tommy Koh '61, Emeritus Professor Koh Kheng Lian '61, Ms Tan Leng Fong '61, Ms Aileen Lim '61, Mr Amarjeet Singh SC '61, Mr Foo Yew Heng '61, and former Solicitor General Mr Koh Eng Tian '61.

NUS Law wins Asia-Pacific Commercial Mediation Competition
Team NUS Law takes top position at the inaugural Asia-Pacific Commercial Mediation Competition! The team is made up of Cheah Wenjie ’19, Cheng Le En Leanne ’19, Lim Wei Shen Mark ’19, and Liu Siew Rong ’19. The competition was held in Melbourne, Australia, from 7 - 9 July 2017, and was organised by the Australia International Chamber of Commerce as a regional round leading up to the annual Paris ICC Mediation competition.


Professor James Penner Appointed as the Kwa Geok Choo Professor of Property Law
Professor James Penner has been appointed as the Kwa Geok Choo Professor of Property Law with effect from 1 July 2017. Professor Penner, who is also the Vice Dean for Research at the faculty, works primarily in the area of property and trusts, as well as law and theory.


60th Anniversary Celebrations Dinner
NUS Law celebrated 60 years of legal education in Singapore with a glittering anniversary dinner on 20 October at the Shangri-La hotel. The event was attended by The Honourable the Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon ’86 as the Guest-of-Honour, former deans, and more than 300 faculty members, students, eminent alumni and members of the legal fraternity, benefactors and other supporters of NUS Law. The evening was filled with fun and nostalgia, and featured performances by an alumni quintet and founder of the Dim Sum Dollies, Selena Tan ’94.



The Lamp of the Law: 60 Years of Legal Education at NUS Law
Written by legal historian Dr Kevin Tan ’86, The Lamp of the Law: 60 Years of Legal Education at NUS Law chronicles the development of NUS Law through the decades in six chapters, spanning some 200 pages.




NUS Law Student Support Fund
The fund was established to provide financial assistance to law students. Examples of financial support include bursaries and book grants for financially needy students; and grants for students to take part in local and overseas mooting competitions as well as student exchange programmes.