Lex:lead is a group of international lawyers and friends who support economic development focusing on the world's least developed countries. We offer an annual essay competition on topics of law and development to students from eligible countries for one-time US$500 awards. In 2015 we also started placing our students in internships with the World Bank and NGOs and in 2018 we began offering mentoring to our winners. Launched with funding from the International Bar Association Foundation, Lex:lead is a partner to the World Bank-supported Global Forum on Law, Justice and Development.
Fourteen new winners bring Lex:lead to 131 awards -- see our 2022 Winners page
Eligible students are invited to register by 31 October 2022 with essays due 31 December 2022
Lex:lead President/Founder Anne Bodley with scholarship winners in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, April 2014 (L-R Hilina Berhanu Degefa, Rediet Zegeye Yigezu, Anne, Lemlem Fiseha Minale, Redeat Kassahun Seifu).
Lex:lead in Zambia: Co-founder Rudy Ezeani with Advisory Board Member Sabine Midderhoff and winners in Lusaka Zambia September 2018 (Back L-R: Milan Dipakkumar Desai; Paul Moono; Lumela Lumela; Front L-R: Muchinda Muma; Nsofwa Puta; Chileke Sakala; Nkandu Kunda Chota; Chitalu Yalobi).
Lex:lead Malawi: Lex:lead judge Tyler Holmes hosted our Malawi winners in September 2022 (L-R Chimango Nyasulu, Osman Yusuf, M Collins Banda, Tyler Holmes, Davis Sibande, Patrick Zindikirani, Andrew Gift Umali, Chawezi Phiri, Joel Elifala, Faith Sumani, Ivy Nkhata).
1. 131 awards made (over US$65,000) across eligible countries in Africa, Asia and Americas. Now looking to our next 100 awards!
2. Launched in 2010 with funding from the International Bar Association Foundation; exceptional second and third grants in 2012 and 2016.
3. Sponsors have included: The International Bar Association Foundation, Allen & Overy, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, Clifford Chance, Launch Legal, Linklaters, the Claude Moore Charitable Foundation, DLA Piper, Mayer Brown, Travers Smith, LEX Africa, others.
4. Internship placements with the World Bank, GiZ, Center for Water Security and Cooperation, Landesa, Protimos, others.
5. Mentoring launched 2018 to further support our students and countries of operation.
5. Intellectual partner to the World Bank-supported Global Forum on Law, Justice and Development (since July 2012).
We are open to the world's least developed countries in Africa, Asia and the Americas as reassessed regularly by the United Nations. Eligible students must show both citizenship and enrollment in one of the countries below.
Papua New Guinea+
Central African Rep.
São Tomé and Príncipe
Sierra Leone ☆
☆ Award winners. + Eligible but not a least developed country. This list is subject to change. *Nationals of asterisked countries are eligible but must be studying in another eligible country until further notice.