Michele DeStefano Beardslee was not overflowing with enthusiasm when her law dean suggested last year that she organize an academic conference on globalization. An assistant professor at the University of Miami School of Law, Beardslee wasn’t sure how yet another series of panels would provide her students with practical skills in dealing with global business issues.

She hit upon the idea of bringing law students from different continents together to work on problems within legal education or the profession — say, the way judges interact across national borders, or how to pay for international litigation. The program, Law Without Walls, will start in January with students from Miami; Peking University School of Transnational Law in Shenzhen, China; Harvard Law School; Fordham University School of Law; New York Law School; and University College London.