The Center for Governmental Responsibility (CGR) at the University of Florida Levin College of Law is a research and public policy center that includes faculty who teach at the College of Law and at other colleges at the University of Florida; who conduct grant- and contract-funded research; who provide clinical experiences for law students; who provide extension and information services through conferences, publications, and resource information; and who engage in public education on policy issues through publicity and public programs on research findings.
For more than thirty-five years, CGR has provided students at the University of Florida and the community with quality teaching, research, and public service.
CGR faculty teach a wide variety of courses and provide educational experiences to law, graduate, and undergraduate students. For-credit courses taught by CGR faculty include offerings at the College of Law and guest lectures in at least six other UF colleges and schools.
Law students receive educational benefits offered by CGR faculty through clinical programs, summer programs, spring break study tours, seminars, externships (including the Florida Supreme Court), independent study, exchange programs, and moot court (Jessup, environmental, and Polish).
CGR faculty coordinate the Florida Bar Foundation public service fellowship program for third-year law students, which provides legal assistance for non-profit and government agencies in local and state communities. CGR faculty coordinate the Center for American Law Studies, a joint program between UF and Warsaw (Poland) University, which trains Polish law students in American law. CGR faculty direct the UF/University of Costa Rica Joint Program in Environmental Law, a summer program with attendees from Florida and from countries throughout the Americas.
Throughout its history, CGR has consistently secured outside funds for research and projects through grants, contracts and private donors. During 2006-2008, CGR has raised nearly $6 million. The projects occur at the state, national, and international level for local, state and national governments; Florida courts, lawyers and the U.S. Supreme Court; governmental agencies; college and universities; foundations; and private enterprises. CGR projects and programs produce publications and policy development in the areas of environment law, social policy law, international trade, and democracy and governance. CGR faculty have published books, law review articles, journal articles, monographs, training manuals (in different languages), training videotapes, an Emmy-winning television program, and model constitutions, laws, and ordinances.
CGR faculty serve on a broad range of law school and university committees and participate in numerous community activities. In the Florida community, CGR faculty assist organizations specializing in the environment, historic preservation, international law, children’s issues, and community service.
CGR faculty direct the annual Conference on Legal & Policy Issues in the Americas, which provides comparative law experiences and international networking for legal practitioners, governmental officials, and academicians from throughout the Americas. Center staff also support the student coordinators of the annual Public Interest Environmental Conference, a national event featuring leading U.S. and international experts. International Trade Law faculty create academic interaction with business, legal and governmental communities through seminars, academic courses, research and technical assistance. Additionally, individual CGR faculty conduct media interviews and public presentations throughout the local community, state, nation, and world.
CGR houses and supports the Conservation Clinic, which is as a service learning program that uses law student legal research assistants to serve communities. It is a joint program of the University of Florida Institute for Food and Agricultural Science’s Cooperative Extension Service and the College of Law and serves the IFAS extension community.
CGR’s programs in Latin America include the University of Florida’s Law & Policy in the Americas Program, inaugurated in 2005; the annual conference on “Legal and Policy Issues in the Americas”, now in its tenth year; and the “Summer Program in American Law for Brazilian Judges, Prosecutors and Attorneys”, ongoing since 2000. CGR also has directed a conflict resolution program in Haiti, the Mesoamerican environmental law program, and conducts extensive research, training and exchange programs throughout the Americas.
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