Skip to main content

Life in Pittsburgh

As a city at the edge of the industrial Midwest yet within reach of the East Coast corridor, Pittsburgh offers students a unique vantage point to study international law.  

The modern history of Pittsburgh is the history of global commerce.  For most of the 20th Century, the steel mills lining the Allegheny, Monongahela, and Ohio rivers produced the steel that built modern America—and much of the rest of the world.  Today, Pittsburgh is home to more than a half dozen companies on the Fortune 500 list, and many more multinational companies.  The transformation of the local economy from a global steel producer to a hub of banking, healthcare, and high-tech sectors has been, in the words of President Barack Obama, “a bold example of how to transition . . . to a 21st-century economy.” Since hosting the G-20 Summit in 2009, Pittsburgh has become one of the most innovative technology hubs in the United States. 

Pittsburgh’s history has helped shape CILE’s focus.  While our curriculum is comprehensive, our programming includes a focus on international business transactions, international arbitration, and the way private commercial interests interact with the global legal system.  These are the trades of a global lawyer, and they are increasingly incorporating public international law topics as well.  Corporate ESG obligations and investment treaty arbitration blend private actors with public obligations.  Pitt Law’s international curriculum is designed to be both practical and cutting-edge.

CILE’s programs situate Pitt Law much like the City of Pittsburgh—nestled equidistance between the industrial and technological base of corporate America, the financial hub of New York City, and the inter-governmental core of Washington D.C.  It is the perfect vantage point for a young lawyer to become a global lawyer. Pittsburgh’s immigrant history provides an especially comfortable environment in particular for lawyers from civil law legal systems to immerse themselves in the study of U.S. common law.