Hello, folks! As a refresher of the 3rd event in The Uncertain Decade series, we’re presenting the main takeaways in a visual form of a gallery with quotes and snippets of the wisdom from Mark Cohen and Richard Susskind. Predictions, observations, suggestions. Let us know if you like this new form of publishing on the blog (more visuals, less classic text).
Looking forward to comments and questions – get in touch! Thank you for reading.
Before the maps, people traveled less: many were born, lived, and died in the same place. Travel was expensive, risky, and, therefore, rare. The legal industry today is in the exact same spot: our legal professionals don’t have maps, our clients are forced to rely on our anecdotal, subjective experiences as guides. But it doesn’t have to be that way, and surely the future will introduce structural changes in how legal services are provided. The only question is how the legal industry will react and implement the necessary reforms.
Data should no longer be a scarecrow to legal professionals out there. Ideally, collecting data should be straightforward, and data visualisation should be clear. A data-driven discussion brings forward topics such as return on technology investment, motivates a team to undertake changes, and overall brings success. Thus, data analytics should extend beyond cost control and cover information about the legal function as a whole. Ultimately, legal teams would be able to pivot their focus from “cost savings” to “value creation”.
Some 200,000 years ago, the Earth was brimming with individuals of the Homo genus, part of the Hominidae family. Weak and helpless, a human child, unlike many other animal infants, requires an entire group’s effort to be raised. Thus, collaboration is a surviving skill that has been intertwined in the very fabric of human society. What’s more, collaboration is an unmistakably quintessential trait of all members of the Homo Sapiens species, part of the Homo genus, one that led the Homo Sapiens to absorb, integrate or replace (according to some opinions) the other Homo species.
Human society was created and is upheld through socially coordinated cooperation. Organizing a state government, building a business, creating new technology, finding a new vaccine, or providing legal services usually requires the efforts of many people chasing a common goal. As seen above, the fact that people can coordinate their actions to develop qualitative innovation and reach human welfare implies that people may have innate psychological mechanisms that facilitate the coordination among individuals. That is why understanding such mechanisms is the cornerstone of human development and evolution.
Fostering collaboration in the workplace is a demanding process, but by all means worth it. The future will seemingly bring new challenges when it comes to organizing work and getting the job done. Progressive companies have already put in place methods of boosting collaboration and engraving it within their teams by using traditional and digital processes. If you want your company to prosper and your workforce to become super-efficient, you should promote a collaborative spirit among the team members and encourage them to push their limits when it comes to cooperation, innovation, and visionary thinking.
Legal Geek’s now prolific series on The Uncertain Decade had its second event on 28 May 2020. It brought together the two well-known legal tech experts – Messrs. Mark Cohen and Richard Susskind -, as well as some surprise guests from all across the legal industry.
Reunited once more on the Legal Geek’s virtual stage, Mark Cohen and Richard Susskind covered two main issues:
“What clients want and need” and
“Alternative legal suppliers – hope or hype?”
The Blog’s team diligently attended this second event. We were once again glued to our laptop screens, following the fecund discussion. And we were in for a treat. As an online, live, one-time event, no recordings are available. So, if you missed it or want to refresh your memory or notes, continue reading! I’ll walk you through the main ideas and takeaways.
Legal technology has been around for a while.
It has transformed some legal operations and inspired professionals to keep searching for more innovative solutions. The legal industry is ripe with career opportunities for tech savvies who can use technology to aid lawyers with client work and with their internal procedures. Legal technologists are tech experts that seem to be in high demand nowadays.
In this article, I will discuss the characteristics and responsibilities of a legal technologist and the adjustments designed to ensure that this role meets the requirements of different stakeholders such as law firms and legal departments. I will present the career hurdles a legal technologist might face when working in law firms or corporate legal departments. In the end, I will try and predict how this job will evolve in the foreseeable future.
Negative capability is a mindset and skill. It is an approach which helps us deal with uncertainty by embracing the unknown and, therefore, unleashing creativity, innovation and diversity. It also appeases anxiety. For the current uncertain times and the changing legal ecosystem, it is of huge relevance and timeliness for modern legal professionals. This post explores the topic to help us be prepared and cope with the ongoing changes.
In this post you’ll read about:
What is a negative capability?
Why and how, specifically, developing negative capability can help (future) legal professionals survive and thrive?
How to develop and cultivate negative capability?
Lawyers are, by definition, multi-skilled: they must have a keen knowledge of the law, they should master time management, the power of persuasion, and the art of eloquence. When it comes to tech capabilities, though, their stack is often limited at Microsoft Word.
This paradox has been observed by many, and it is the premise for the ascent of a new breed of legal professionals at the frontiers between law and technology. They were symbolically called legal engineers.
Before going about paving the future, these pioneers might want to first find answers to some pressing questions such as: What legal process should we digitalise? Should we use existing technologies or create new ones from scratch? How to attenuate the community’s resistance towards this type of solution? Equally important, how to educate the general public into trusting this approach?
If you missed the first (ever, we hear!) event of the two great legal innovation luminaries sharing a conference stage you can read our very thorough notes and impressions in this post.
On 30th April 2020, Mark Cohen and Richard Susskind, hosted by Legal Geek, presented their insight on the topics of:
(1) “Legal life after COVID-19 – a very new normal”; and
(2) “When courts close, what will half the world’s lawyers do?”.
This webinar was a first out of four forming the Uncertain Decade series.
We’re recommending participating in future events of the Uncertain Decade. Read our post to find out why, along with a report from the first meeting.
On 3rd of April 2020, a group of visionary legal professionals organised the first online court hearing in Romania. The case was a moot one, in the sense that the parties and the matter brought forth before the court were all fictional. What was at stake here, though, was for the legal professionals to get a taste of online/remote dispute resolution before courts of law.
Shortly, on 7th of April 2020, the Bucharest Tribunal (both a court of first instance and appellate court) launched the Videoconferencing section on its website to be used by and large for civil cases.
These shifts of paradigm were triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic and associated measures. The challenge will now be to sustain these actions and continue the innovation process and digitalise the Romanian judicial system once the pandemic crisis is over. The task will be a demanding one because, unlike alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods such as arbitration and mediation, the procedural rules governing the activity of the courts of law are largely different and mainly strict. Although seeing the possible advantages, Romanian legal professionals are still wary of the digitalisation process.