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How Law Firms Should Prepare for the Future of Legal Services (HighQ SmartLaw Book Contribution)

HighQ, a UK-based software company serving the legal market, recently initiated  a conversation about SmarltLaw. It started with a website earlier this year. This month, the company released a short e-book that asked 15 experts to answer the question “What do you believe lawyers and l

The Coming Changes in How Lawyers Practice

In this century we have seen dramatic changes in the legal market. From a period of plenty, we moved to one of seeming scarcity. Many commentators suggest that the legal market has been, is being, or will be disrupted. I have a different point of view: if the 2007-10 economic crisis d

Do Large Law Firms Have to Start from Scratch to Automate?

A recent article about aircraft production observed that automation requires starting from scratch. Wow. It made me wonder if that’s so for law firms?. Airplane Makers Automate to Meet Surging Demand in the Wall Street Journal (9 July 2016) reports that Boeing and Airbus “

The Future of Law & Contracting (live from IACCM)

This is a live blog post from the International Association for Contracting & Commercial Professionals (IACCM) Americas Forum. [Please forgive any typos or misunderstandings in meaning.] This session is The Future of Law & Contracting (live from IACCM) with Mark Harris, Founde

Do Large Law Firms Work Differently from Each Other?

I wonder if lawyers at large law firms practice differently. With all the discussions about strategy and competitive differentiation, I rarely read about how lawyers do their work. And I believe this matters more than the market thinks. What do I mean by how lawyers work? Examples inc

New Software to Manage Deals (DealStage)

I recently saw a demo of DealStage, software designed to help lawyers manage deals. The company bills its software as enabling “attorneys & transactional professionals to better manage the deal process lifecycle from drafting to closing.” Charlie Uniman, a lawyer with years of exp

Legal Innovation on Continental Europe – Xenion Legal

Innovation in the continental European legal market has long seemed to lag relative to the UK, US, and Australia. I have puzzled if my perception was wrong or reflects an actual lag. A recent conversation with a European innovator suggests it is the latter. And I am glad to see this c

Meet Your New Lawyer, IBM Watson

Will IBM Watson be your new lawyer? Perhaps someday. For now, I tackle an easier question: what role can Watson play in Big Law? I speculate here so welcome comments and corrections. Last week at the International Legal Technology Association annual conference  an IBM Watson senior ma

Big Law Changing or Being Disrupted?

The legal market has seen a running debate since the economic crash: is Big Law being disrupted?  My short answer is no, it’s only changing. It’s not the three conferences in February alone on this question that prompt me to write today.  Rather, it’s the appearance

Does Citing Professionalism Protect Bad Lawyer Habits?

The legal press and blogs lit up this week when Dentons decided not to report profits per equity partner to the American Lawyer.  The PEP discussion I leave to others. I found more interesting a reason Dentons gives: “a focus on profit undermines the differences between the prac