Dean & Law Professor Traveled to Brazil for an Alternative Dispute Resolution Conference

Posted: Mon, 08/27/2012 - 10:46

From August 23 to 25, John L. Carroll, dean at Cumberland School of Law, and Michael D. Floyd, law professor and director of international studies at Cumberland School of Law, traveled to São Paulo, Brazil, to participate in the alternative dispute resolution conference titled “Mudança de Cultura pela Composição de Litígios (translated into English, Cultural Change for the Settlement of Disputes).”  The conference was hosted by Fundação Getúlio Vargas (FGV), a highly respected Brazilian university with campuses in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and Brasilia.  FGV has an enormous online presence in Brazil:

Dean Carroll spoke at the conference on the topic of alternative dispute resolution.  His remarks were well received by the audience of approximately 100 Brazilian judges, lawyers and business leaders.  The conference was organized by FGV and Maria Cristina Zucchi, an adjunct professor at Cumberland School of Law and a Desembargadora (Justice) in the Tribunal de Justiça do Estado de São Paulo (the São Paulo State Supreme Court).  The other conference speakers included Professor Zucchi; Professor Pérsio Talarico from the FGV faculty; and Desembargador (Justice) Heraldo de Oliveira Silva, president of the Academia Paulista de Magistrados (São Paulo Magistrates’ Academy).  Dean Carroll and Professor Floyd also met extensively with FGV professors and administrators to explore areas of common interest and possible opportunities for future cooperation.

Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law has offered a unique Master of Comparative Law (MCL) degree program since 1994, focused primarily on Brazilian judges, lawyers, and academics.  Because Brazil follows the civil law system, in contrast to the U.S. common law system derived from English law, the program provides a rich opportunity to compare and contrast these two fundamentally different approaches to jurisprudence.  MCL students attend classes at Cumberland School of Law in June and have the opportunity to participate in the law school’s summer study-abroad program in Cambridge, England, in July.  Brazilian participation in the Cambridge, England, program enriches the Brazilian students’ experience by showing them the ancient roots of the common law system.  It also enriches the experience of the U.S.  juris doctor students studying in Cambridge, England, by adding participants from another continent and legal system.  Further information on Cumberland School of Law’s international programs is available at   

 John L. Carroll, dean at Cumberland School of Law


 Michael D. Floyd, law professor and director of international studies at Cumberland School of Law