Law Lab Speaker Series >

apr
22
2009

The End of Lawyers? The End of Law Schools?

Professor Richard Susskind, Author of "The End of Lawyers?" and IT Adviser to the Lord Chief Justice of England

Wednesday, April 22, 12:15 pm
Griswold Hall 110, Harvard Law School
RSVP required for those attending in person (rsvp@cyber.law.harvard.edu)
[RIGHT NOW] This event will be webcast live at 12:15 pm ET.

Will lawyers be casualties in the digital revolution?  This is the controversial prediction of Richard Susskind, author of The End of Lawyers? Rethinking the Nature of Legal Services.  He believes that lawyers will have to ask themselves what elements of their current workload could be undertaken more quickly, more cheaply, more efficiently, or to a higher quality using different and new methods of working – because if they don’t, their competitors will. The market is unlikely to tolerate expensive lawyers for tasks that can be better discharged with support of modern systems and techniques.

Prof. Susskind predicts that the legal profession will be driven by two forces in the coming decade: by a market pull towards the commoditization of legal services, and by the pervasive development and uptake of new and disruptive legal technologies. The threat here for lawyers is clear - their jobs may well be eroded or even displaced. At the same time, for entrepreneurial lawyers, Susskind foresees quite different law jobs emerging which may be highly rewarding, even if very different from those of today.

Is the same true of law schools?  Is the current model of legal education facing radical change?  Prof. Susskind will explore these and other challenging questions in a lecture open to the entire Law School community.

About Richard Susskind

Richard Susskind has specialized in legal technology for 25 years, advising firms and governments. Since 1998, he has been IT Adviser to the Lord Chief Justice of England. In 2003, he was appointed by the Cabinet Office as Chair of the Advisory Panel on Public Sector Information. He holds law professorships at Gresham College in London and the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow.  Susskind is a graduate of the University of Glasgow and earned a doctorate in law and computers from Balliol College, Oxford. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and of the British Computer Society.

Links

Radio Berkman 121: Law + Technology = Fewer Lawyers thumbnail

Click the play button below to start the audio.

Location
Berkman Center for Internet and Society
License
Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution Unported
Copyright Holder
The President and Fellows of Harvard College
The web player requires Adobe Flash to function. If you do not have Flash you can still download the media using the links to the right.
Location
Berkman Center
License
Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution Unported
Copyright Holder
The President and Fellows of Harvard College

Last updated April 22, 2009

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