Schuivende panelen in het juridische werkveld | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 30, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0169-2216
  • E-ISSN: 2468-9424


A new legal profession in the Netherlands: really?

A new legal profession in the Netherlands: really?

In the Netherlands, a new Bachelor Law degree was introduced in 2002 at the University of Applied Sciences (HBO Law), aimed at developing a wider range of legal professionals in an area traditionally containing legal professionals educated at university and their aids. In this article, both theoretical background on development of a profession (with job development as an essential element) and research of the new legal professional on the labor market and in organisations is presented, leading to a surprising conclusion.The new legal professional is oriented to the academic (Master) legal colleagues, rather than to their peer group of legal Bachelors. Understanding extra education is needed to reach the much-coveted professions of lawyer and judge. Large numbers of HBO Law alumni enter university for additional legal education (‘societal effect’), leaving only a smaller group of new law professionals in organisations. After a few years on the job, the Bachelor lawyers start to reach job levels formerly restricted to legal Master professionals. We predict a mixture of Bachelor and Master levels in legal jobs and conclude that in the short future, a new purely Bachelor law professional is unlikely to emerge.


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