Day 1 of the first 100 days

Monday 2 January 2023
A Legal Bridge to the Future

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A monthly contribution by the IBA President

It is a great honour for me to write the first page of this travel diary as IBA President, a position I assumed on 1 January, after dedicating more than 25 years to the IBA in different roles. I take on this responsibility with great excitement and with a firm commitment.

My aspiration is to steadily continue walking in the path of success of our Association and leading it to the next level. Despite the pandemic, and despite the terrible war in Europe, I feel highly motivated by the times we are living in: a unique moment of profound change. We have the immense privilege of being part of an Association which has the capacity of making a positive impact in society, in people’s lives. When dealing with those changes, we must uphold the rule of law, democratic values, human rights and the target of sustainable goals. The IBA is global by nature, but at the same time, we must dedicate efforts to our regions to deliver our benefits to each of them, doing so through our regional fora, bars and law societies.

The journey we have before us is fascinating. We should transform this opportunity into reality.

We have planned a very specific route to successfully do so based on three pillars: strengthening further the relevance of the IBA; strengthening further the engagement with you, our members; and strengthening further our internal cohesion.

Our steady compromise of providing you with appealing content has led us to identify five substantive projects which originate from our Strategic Plan, in the following areas:

  1. Highlighting the contribution of the legal profession to society;
  2. Addressing gender equality in the legal profession;
  3. Placing the legal profession as a relevant player on the ESG agenda;
  4. Protecting rights in the digital environment; and
  5. Preparing the legal profession for the future.

Achieving our goal also requires greater promotion and communication of the outcome of our projects, as well as a meaningful institutional agenda. I am organising meetings with the most relevant legal institutions and policy-makers, as well as with our members in different regions. I invite you to have a closer look at the above projects and follow our activities and institutional agenda through the presidency's web page.

On this first page of the travel diary, I invite you – the Legal Practice Division, the Bar Issues Commission, the Public and Professional Interest Division, bars and law societies, IBA staff and executives – to join me, all united, during the next two years so that we may reach our objectives. Let us walk while maintaining an open dialogue that will allow us, the IBA leadership, to know more about your interests in the IBA, and will allow you, our membership, to learn more about ongoing activities and your potential involvement in the same. We shall be aligned.

This is the spirit. I wish to write the success story of this Association during the next two years. It is up to you now to think about how you can contribute to it and act accordingly. I don’t have the slightest doubt that, with your commitment and support, acting united, we shall consolidate the IBA as the greatest worldwide legal association and a cause for pride.