Teaching 'Public Interest Vocationalism': Law as a Case Study

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Teaching, Professionalism, Vocationalism, Public Interest


In this short essay, we present law as a case study of teaching professionalism in the public interest. Our hope is that the accountancy profession, as well as other professions (including law), will be prompted to reflect on the potential for the concept of public-interest vocationalism to at least inform, if not transform, education in their domains. The argument proceeds in three stages. In Part I, we set the context by identifying a number of profound challenges now facing Canadian legal education. In Part II, we introduce the concept of, and provide a justification for, public-interest vocationalism. In Part III, we provide a model of how legal education could be reformed in order to reflect, accommodate, and engender public-interest vocationalism.


© 2015 Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada