Wellness in legal education and practice: towards integration and new connections

ANU_logo_newAustralian Centre on China in the World

Building 188, Fellows Lane, The Australian National University, Canberra




The 2015 National Wellness for Law Forum will be held on Thursday 5th and Friday 6th February, hosted by ANU Legal Workshop in Canberra. The Forum is an annual initiative of the Wellness Network for Law, a community of academics, practitioners, regulators, students and wellness advocates who are committed to:

  • Addressing the high levels of psychological distress experienced in law
  • Promoting wellness at law school, in the legal academy, and in the profession


Theme for 2015

The theme for the 2015 forum is Wellness in Legal Education and Practice: Towards Integration and New Connections. Since the first forum in 2012, the conversation on psychological wellness and distress in the law has advanced substantially. There are now many voices bringing different experiences and perspectives from across the spectrum of legal education and practice, and crossing into many other disciplines.

This concurrent specialisation and diversification is a welcome sign of a maturing community of research and practice. Yet this should not be at the expense of integration and new connections at a number of levels, including:

  • Integrating the work being done with different populations in law (eg law students, lawyers, legal academics and the judiciary)
  • Integrating the wellness research and practice in law with that of other disciplines and populations, and understanding the common and distinctive factors relevant to wellness in law
  • Integrating different wellness theories and interventions (eg, prevention of distress v promotion of wellbeing) in the law context
  • Integrating wellness more deeply into legal education and practice, rather than as a supplement to existing pedagogy and practices
  • Integrating the wellness discussion with considerations regarding the commercial realities of the profession (including lawyer retention, performance and sustainability)
  • Integrating the wellness research and practice with other social and cultural developments relevant to the role and future of legal education and practice.


Keynote Speakers

Our two distinguished keynote speakers are:

The Hon Justice Shane Marshall 

Wellbeing and the Law Foundation Ambassador and Judge of the Federal Court of Australia 

Associate Professor Rachael Field

Queensland University of Technology and founder of the Wellness Network for Law


We invite you to participate in the Forum. We welcome submissions from practitioners, regulators, academics and students. A 200 word abstract/description/proposal is required for all submissions. All submissions will be reviewed by the Forum organising committee. Submissions are due by Monday 5 January 2015 and can be made online:

We will be inviting accepted presenters to write a short blog post about their presentation for the Wellness for Law Network blog in advance of the Forum.


Registration for the Forum is now open. You may register online. Registration is free for all participants thanks to the generosity of ANU Legal Workshop.

An informal dinner will be a Gourmet BBQ which will be held at University House on Thursday 5 February 2015 commencing at 7pm. The cost is $40 per person, not including beverages.


Information about a limited number of on-campus accommodation options is found online:


We look forward to welcoming you to the 2015 National Wellness for Law Forum at ANU.

Phone: 02 6125 1096
Email: [email protected]
Website: law.anu.edu.au/conferences/wellness-law
Twitter: @WellnessForLaw