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Committed to reforming legal education and the pursuit of academic excellence, NLSIU places significant emphasis on legal and policy research. Research at NLSIU is primarily carried out through its Centres, Chairs, multi-year research projects, and through individual faculty initiatives. The University’s specialised research centres have been repeatedly called upon to shape laws and improve implementation in intellectual property, child rights, and environmental laws, among many others. The Research Policy of the University is available here.

In 2020, NLSIU identified five focus areas where it will develop new interdisciplinary research clusters:

  • Labour and Work
  • Climate Justice
  • State Capacity and Reform
  • Access to Justice & Legal System Reform
  • Law, Technology and Society

In Focus

Health Law

While NLS has a research centre dedicated to Health Law and Ethics, the University has entered into a slew of collaborations in this domain. Some of our recent research initiatives are listed below. Project on...

Working Lives: Documenting Labour Histories

The QAMRA Archival Project is concerned with the nature of record-keeping in postcolonial India. Records in the postcolonial state archives from the 1980s onward will determine what future historians will base their studies on for...

Enquiring into India’s state capacity

India’s COVID-19 crisis has resulted in unprecedented levels of demand on its public institutions, demands they have comprehensively failed to meet. Scholars have generally been in agreement when characterising India’s state capacity, or its ability...

Research Entities


NLSIU’s research centres anchor original and deep research on a broad range of critical areas. They also form nodes through which faculty, students and scholars publicly engage on these issues to inform, educate and help shape reform measures. From human rights and gender equality to leading environmental law research and emerging issues on law and technology, NLSIU’s research centres continue to engage with and impact key societal concerns in every decade.


Research Chairs at NLS aim to advance knowledge in their respective fields through original inquiry, promotion of academic debate and dissemination of the latest research and findings. They play a critical role in strengthening the teaching, research and training capabilities of the University as a whole.

Projects & Grants

Continuing our research efforts, NLSIU has entered into a slew of collaborations both at the local and international level. This is in addition to the various projects undertaken by our research Centres and Chairs. We hope to initiate more such collaborations in the coming months and bring together scholars and researchers from across India and around the world to produce innovative and relevant outcomes through our research.


NLS is home to several interdisciplinary journals that have carried articles by leading scholars and experts over the years, and been cited by the Supreme Court on several occasions. The journals have a commitment to open access and the promotion of legal writing, and occupy an important space in legal academia in India.



India Needs to Value Academic Freedom, Research in Humanities to Emerge as Power Centre

Dr. Karthick Ram Manoharan

April 22, 2024

“Why should academic freedom be of any concern to the public?” This piece advocates for strengthening spaces for rigorous intellectual conversation in India. Focusing on the role of humanities research, it argues that “critical and…


Liberalism Against Itself: Cold War Intellectuals and the Making of Our Times – review

Dr. Atreyee Majumder

April 15, 2024

Book Review: Samuel Moyn, Liberalism Against Itself: Cold War Intellectuals and the Making of Our Times (Yale University Press 2023). Excerpt: “In Liberalism Against Itself: Cold War Intellectuals and the Making of Our Times, Samuel Moyn dissects intellectual…


Fear of Love and Loving in India

Dr. Sarasu Esther Thomas

April 13, 2024

Excerpt: “It is unthinkable that marriages and live-in relationships between adults should become so regimented by the State. This is a violation of constitutional and human rights to have adult agency appropriated by the state…


Under The Surface: Human Rights and Environmental Implications of the Proposed Sijimali Bauxite Mine in Odisha

April 12, 2024

Prepared by The Human Rights Lawyering Clinic at the National Law School of India University, Bangalore, this report covers the human rights and environmental implications of the proposed Sijimali bauxite mine in Rayagada and Kalahandi…