The 2018 Annual Norris Ward McKinnon Lecture
Aiming at Simplicity, by the Hon Robert Fisher QC
Can law be simpler? It may not be apparent to those inside the legal tent, but law is complicated. This is obvious to the public who have to make sense of what lawyers say. The legal world also pays a great price. At best, hacking their way through unnecessary complexity wastes time and money. At worst, it can derail the whole attempt to think clearly.
Simple concepts promote lucid reasoning. Simple language is more readily understood. It is up to everyone in the legal community - judges, advocates, solicitors, lecturers and textbook writers – to do better. The Hon Robert Fisher will share his insights and offer some ideas as to how to go about that.
Date: Thursday, 11 October 2018
Time: 6:00pm, pre-lecture drinks from 5:30pm
Venue: Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts, University of Waikato
Please RSVP here by 4 October.
About the Hon Robert Fisher QC
Prior to establishing his practice as a mediator and arbitrator in 2004, the Hon Robert Fisher QC practiced law for 24 years until his appointment to the High Court in 1989. As a judge he held positions as Chairman of the NZ Rules Committee, Supervising Judge of the Commercial List, Executive Judge of the Auckland High Court, Senior Judge of the Auckland High Court, and divisional member of the NZ Court of Appeal. He has published and lectured on relationship property, evidence, procedure, intellectual property, maritime law, jurisprudence, advocacy, mediation and arbitration. His qualifications and appointments include Doctor of Laws (1984), Queen’s Counsel (1985) and Fulbright Scholar (1994).
He is a member of the Courts of Appeal of Samoa and the Cook Islands and has provided a series of public interest inquiry reports for the New Zealand Government.
The Annual Norris Ward McKinnon Lecture at Te Piringa - Faculty of Law
Te Piringa – Faculty of Law is delighted to continue its collaboration with Norris Ward McKinnon hosting this public event for the second time.
Designed as an annual event, the lecture series began as a way to address issues relating to the development of jurisprudence in New Zealand.
Now running for over 27 years, the Annual Norris Ward McKinnon Public Lecture brings distinguished scholars and members of the profession to the Waikato campus. This series has attracted national attention for its roster of speakers selected from New Zealand’s leading experts in the field of jurisprudence, NZ law and policy, and social justice. Over the years, distinguished guest speakers included Dame Sian Elias, Hon. Justice Baragwanath, Sir Geoffrey Palmer, Dame Sylvia Cartwright and many others.
The series helped to foster the relationship between the Hamilton Legal profession, the Hamilton law society and Te Piringa – Faculty of Law.
The lecture is traditionally the lead article in Waikato Law Review.
In 2017 Norris Ward McKinnon established a generous postgraduate scholarship to support PhD students’ research in their chosen field. Both, the Faculty and the firm believe that the scholarships will further foster collegiality, and bringing researchers and legal practitioners together to share and learn from the outcomes of the research.
Norris Ward McKinnon is a full service legal firm with nearly 100 years of history and expertise in the Waikato region. The firm celebrates its centenary in 2019 and prides itself on looking after clients with professionalism and respect, offering clients specialist legal expertise backed by experience.
A special panel discussion facilitated by Phillip Morgan QC explored the pros and cons of the adversarial process as encountered by the panelists and discussed the skill-set required of lawyers to perform effectively in the Judicial System, now and in the future.
2016 - Has New Zealand Criminal Justice System Been Compromised?
Long-serving judge Hon Sir Ron Young says the right to a fair trial in New Zealand is being undermined in a variety of ways.
2015 - The Vision and the Reality
Judge MacLean draws on his 35 years of experience as a Coroner reflected on Coronial death investigation 15 years after the August 2000 Law Commission report “Coroners".
2014 - Law Making in New Zealand: Is There a Better Way?
The former prime minister and president of the Law Commission has looked at aspects of law-making from a number of perspectives; as an academic, legal practitioner and politician. He said New Zealand law-making system needs urgent attention.
2013 - Lex Aotearoa: An Heroic Attempt to Map the Maori Dimension in Modern New Zealand Law
by Hon. Justice Joseph Williams
2012 - Restorative Justice: Lessons from the Past, Pointers and the Future
by Judge Sir David Carruthers
2011 - Fundamentals: A Constitutional Conversation
by Rt. Hon. Dame Sian Elias
2010 - From Privy Council to Supreme Court: A Rite of Passage for New Zealand’s Legal System
by Professor Margaret Wilson, DCNZM
2009- Chipping Away at the Judicial Arm?
by Hon. Justice John Priestley
2008 - Hard Cases and Bad Law
Hon. Justice Paul Heath
2007 - The Evolution of Treaty Jurisprudence
by Hon. Justice Baragwanath
2006 - The New Miscarriages of Justice
by Hon. Justice Grant Hammond
2005 - Approaches to Business Rehabilitation
by Hon. Justice Blanchard
2004 - The Appearance of Justice
by Hon. Justice Noel Anderson
2003 - Statutes and the Ordinary Person
by John F Burrows
2002 - Journalistic Responsibility, Freedom of Speech and Protection of Reputation - Striking the Right Balance Between Citizens and the Media
by Rt. Hon. Justice Tipping
2001 - Some Human Rights Issues
by Hon. Dame Sylvia Cartwright
2000 - The Conscience of the Law
by Rt. Hon. Justice Thomas
1999 - The Crown, the Parliament and the Government
by John McGrath QC
1998 - The Impact of International Law on New Zealand Law
by Rt. Hon. Sir Kenneth Keith
1997 - Continuity and Change: The 1996 General Election and the Role of the Governor-General
by Rt. Hon. Sir Michael Hardie Boys
1996 - “Hard Look” and the Judicial Function
by Sian Elias
1995 - Public Interest Litigation
by Rt. Hon. Sir Ivor Richardson
1994 - The Challenge of Treaty of Waitangi Jurisprudence
by Rt .Hon. Sir Robin Cooke
1993 - The New Zealand Court Structure, Past Present and Future
by Sir Thomas Eichelbaum
1992 - The Development of a New Zealand Jurisprudence
by Hon Justice Gault