The Bangladesh International Arbitration Centre (BIAC), an arbitration institution in the country, urged the University Grants Commission (UGC) to include Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in the university curriculum.
A team led by BIAC Chief Executive Officer Muhammad A Rumee Ali met UGC Chairman Professor Dr Kazi Shahidullah at the UGC Bhaban in the capital's Agargaon area on Tuesday, said a press release.
"ADR has been effectively implemented around the world. Most developed economies try to settle disputes outside courts first and litigation is the last resort," Ali said.
He said quite a few legislations in Bangladesh have the provision for ADR.
"Besides, the law courses in our universities do not have different types of ADR in the curriculum. ADR should be included in the business and law courses so that the new generation of practitioners can apply this knowledge in their professions," added Ali.
He discussed the background of why ADR is important for foreign direct investment (FDI) which plays a significant role in economic growth.
"Time, cost and quality of judicial process make investors lose confidence. As a result, FDI influx is low," Ali said.
"Additionally, we are signatories to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which include Quality Education (SDG 4), Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG 8), and Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions (SDG 16)," he explained.
Appreciating the initiative, the UGC chairman said the faculty members usually prepare plans and proposals regarding any changes in the curriculum.
"Based on that proposal, the UGC members have a discussion before giving approval. Besides, the approval of the Bangladesh Bar Council is also needed for law courses," he added.
Ali said the BIAC had already started discussions with the Bangladesh Bar Council and also had a roundtable with academicians last year.
"We can jointly arrange a seminar to generate awareness and come up with a plan to include ADR in the university curriculum," he added.
Noornahar Begum Shiuly, deputy secretary (legal) (district and sessions judge), and BIAC Counsel Rubaiya Ehsan Karishma also participated in the discussion.