Center for Public Interest Law

Mission Statement

The Center for Public Interest Law’s mission is to harness the power of the law to institute positive social change by educating the next generation of leaders – public interest lawyers and government officials – and ensuring that our government adheres to its core mission of protecting its citizens.

Vision Statement

We work to protect and advance a reality where every person – rich or poor, old or young - is protected by a government that is ethical, accountable, and transparent.

Our Approach

We protect underlying democratic values through advocacy and education, creating systemic and far-reaching change at the state level, and advocating before all three branches of government for those who do not have the leverage to advocate for themselves – consumers, the poor, and children­ – and other diffuse interests such as the environment and future generations.

We particularly focus our attention on state regulatory agencies because they are increasingly important, and are highly susceptible to unmonitored abuse by those with a profit-stake interest in the outcome of their decisionmaking; in fact, we are often the lone public interest advocates appearing before these agencies.

We push the government to develop inclusive policies, and urge government leaders to serve the public and not monied special interests.  As an independent academic institution at the University of San Diego School of Law, we train future public interest lawyers to do the same.

Stay Informed

CPIL has developed a new initiative to share information and keep the public informed. This new project will involve real-time reporting on current issues, state regulatory agencies, public and government events, to encourage people to speak up and get involved. Everyone can be a part of instituting social change.  

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cpil, cai and epic teams having a discussion around a conference table
Begin quote We work to preserve the most important political check: the independence of the state from vested private interests seeking its capture. – Professor Robert C. Fellmeth