Leslie Downie joined Michalsons in 2016 to coordinate a groundbreaking legal specialisation for Land Information Systems Law. Leslie is uniquely skilled to help manage legal risks triggered when processing information for land in pro-poor data portals. Her theoretical expertise is drawn from postgraduate legal and language qualifications and her MPhil research (Geomatics EBE). She is on the roll of legal practitioners as an attorney, notary and conveyancer, as well as being an accredited mediator and an affiliate member of the South African Geomatics Institute.
Her specialisations include verification and authentication processes for land information systems, fine art and collectables, and data from poor or low-literate citizens. Leslie also offers mediation services for alternative dispute resolution relating to land, housing, art, collectables and religious entities.
University of Cape Town: MPhil (Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment: Geomatics Division), 2015 – with distinction
Stellenbosch University: Centre for International and Comparative Labour and Social Security Law, 2000
University of South Africa: Hons in English Literature, 1991
University of Pretoria: BA LLB, 1981
- Land tenure and land information systems (LIS)
- Informal and religious land tenure
- Record keeping for disadvantaged consumers
- Mediation and alternative dispute resolution
- Simple language/audio recordings for low-literate right holders
- Training of paralegals and land information record keepers
- Notarial verification and authentication processes
- Researcher, author, speaker and publisher
- Research: MPhil (Geomatics Division, Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment) awarded with distinction, 2015. Title Developing and Initial Testing of Pro-Poor Prenuptial Agreements as a New Land Tenure Tool to Secure Rights in Urban State-Subsidized Housing –
- Mediation panels: Mediation in Motion (Current) | DRDLR Land Rights Management Facility (Previous)
Pro-Poor Legal Practice: Household Rights and State Subsidised Housing in South Africa, Juta 2016 Review by Sicelo Kula
Annual Banking Law Update: How to Rob a Bank: Land Tenure Information Systems, 2016 Ed C Hugo Juta
FIG Working Week (New Zealand), 2016 – Cadastre and Land Management Commission: Social Tenure Based on Intimacy – Avoiding Family Disasters: South African Marital Contracts as an Innovative Pro-poor Land Tool This article has been nominated ‘article of the month’ in July 2016 by FIG the International Federation of Surveyors
AfricaGEO Conference – Land Tenure: Mapping Marital Rights and Obligations, 2014
English/Xhosa audio books: How to Buy and Sell a Low Cost Property BLISS 2012
PER Law Journal: Urban Pro Poor Registrations: Complex-Simple, the Overstrand Project, 2011
- Addresses: | Hometruths Conference London Clergy Land Tenure: Mapping Marital Rights 2018 / SA Institute for Advanced Constitutional, Public, Human Rights and International Law (SAIFAC), WITS, NWU, UNISA Pro-Poor Legal Practice 2017/ SA Geomatics Institute AGM 2017 / VPUU Individual Social Tenure 2015 /UCT Property Law Teacher’s Colloquium: Sur-Real Rights: Urban Immovable Property Law for the Informal Sector, 2012 | Premier of the Western Cape and Provisional officials: Conflicts in Urban Poor-to-Poor Alienations of Previously State-subsidized Land, 2012 | Stellenbosch University Sustainability Institute: Sustainable Publishing, 2008
Leslie loves playing with creative ideas and new concepts. She is fascinated by abstract and conceptual art and has written a collaborative murder mystery with friends (Dead Letter). She enjoys editing writing that interests her; social hiking, open water swimming, and growing things you can eat – even though she is a useless cook. Most of all she loves quality family time. Volunteer activities include: Christian Lawyer’s Association board member 2007 – 2008 | Learn to Earn board chairperson Hermanus (NPO) 2001 – 2003 | Harare Inner City Partnership social welfare committee 1997 – 1998 | American Field Service (AFS) exchange student Dallas, Texas.