NLSIU Announces JSW Grant for Comprehensive Redevelopment of New Academic Block on Campus

Bengaluru, April 12, 2024: The National Law School of India University announces a grant from the JSW Group for a comprehensive redevelopment and expansion of the University’s core Academic Block & Precinct, as well as the establishment of the ‘JSW Centre on the Future of Law’.

This grant will support the redevelopment of the New Academic Block (NAB), located in the southern part of the NLSIU campus at Nagarabhavi, Bengaluru. The two-storeyed NAB was originally built in 2014 and accommodates lecture theatres, seminar rooms, office spaces and meeting rooms. The JSW grant will help add four floors and redevelop the available two floors to provide flexible and technologically advanced learning and office spaces, along with collaborative research spaces for faculty, students, and researchers. This building will be named as the ‘JSW Academic Block’ and be seamlessly integrated with the surrounding precinct including the recently redeveloped Shri Narayan Rao Melgiri Memorial National Law Library to create the new academic hub of the University.

The grant will also support a new research centre on campus: ‘JSW Centre for the Future of Law’. This Centre will anchor academic and policy research and curricular interventions that explore the effects of new technologies on the future of the legal system, the legal profession and legal education. The Centre will develop new and appropriate models of legal regulation and incubate new technologies that facilitate legal system reform and access to justice. Under the leadership of a Centre Director, the Centre will host doctoral and postdoctoral researchers who will engage with multiple stakeholders including governments, domestic and international regulators, academia, civil society and private sector entities.

“This generous grant, the largest in the University’s history, enables the successful implementation of the next phase of the NLSIU Inclusion and Expansion Plan 2021-25. Under this Strategic Plan, the University aims to expand student intake by nearly 350% to facilitate greater opportunity for all while creating a socially inclusive student body. We are grateful for JSW’s support and commitment towards the growth of NLSIU by developing world class infrastructural facilities for future generations of law students, and fostering new and useful legal research that responds to the technological transformations of our time,” said NLSIU Vice Chancellor, Prof. (Dr.) Sudhir Krishnaswamy.

Mrs. Sangita Jindal, Chairperson of JSW Foundation, said: “The JSW contribution of revamping the new academic block is going to help to significantly improve teaching quality, infrastructure and access to resources for students and faculty on campus. The legal profession plays a key role in the development and progress of our country since it’s a just society which creates opportunities for growth and distributive justice. As such, education in law plays a key role in shaping the discourse, lawful behaviour and development of norms for a justice loving peaceful society and nation. In the long term, the contribution will significantly impact the lives of graduating students. JSW’s aim is not just to support the skilling of professionals but to facilitate the empowerment of leaders who are committed to serving our country with dedication and excellence.”

Commenting on the JSW Group’s partnership with NLS, Mr. Parth Jindal, MD of JSW Cement & JSW Paints, stated “Over the years, JSW Group has been dedicated to promoting education in various forms. The contribution to the Future of Law Centre at NLS enables us to support a critical aspect of dealing with how the law needs to adapt and cope with technological changes. It enables NLS the opportunity to leapfrog and be a leader in these new areas. The advent of new technology in AI, such as large language models, is already revolutionizing the legal field. Technology powered tools are transforming contract analysis and litigation support, making legal processes more efficient. The Future of Law Centre at NLS will be at the forefront of exploring these innovations, developing curriculum and research initiatives that address the ethical, legal, and societal implications of technology in law, ensuring that future legal professionals are well-prepared to utilize and regulate these technologies responsibly.”

About the Architects

In November 2023, the University along with the JSW Group selected ‘Hundredhands’, through a rigorous architectural competition, as the architect for the development of this precinct. Hundredhands is an internationally recognised design studio based in Bangalore. Over the last 20 years, the studio has developed a reputation for carefully considered work which is sensitive to context and celebrates craft. The studio’s portfolio includes masterplans, institutional buildings, housing, hospitality projects and residential and corporate interiors. For the New Academic Block, Hundredhands will be collaborating with A Threshold, a studio based in Bangalore. Their work is predicated on careful observation and their deep understanding of indigenous building traditions. The studio’s on-going work includes residential, institutional and hospitality projects.

Mr. Ashwini Saxena, CEO, JSW Foundation said: “Through a strong field presence, the Foundation operates across 33 districts in 14 Indian States with priority on communities around JSW’s plant & port locations. JSW Foundation also reaches out to communities beyond these locations to contribute towards India’s social development in a meaningful way. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the Foundation supported various communities & families by providing food and healthcare facilities across all these locations. JSW Foundation’s holistic life-cycle based interventions have positively impacted more than a million underprivileged people across India.”

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