Global law firm, Norton Rose Fulbright, along with workflow automation and expert system company, Bryter, are working together with York Law School to develop a new Law & Technology module for students.
Interestingly the elective module is open to 40 third year law and computer science honours students, divided equally between the two disciplines. This looks to be a great idea and may well help to produce the kind of hybrid professionals law firms of the future will need – and need right now…!
The firm said that the course requires students to propose and build prototype solutions using Bryter’s no-code approach to constructing legal workflows, in this case ones that can help narrow the access to justice gap. The module will be introduced into the curriculum in January 2020 and will include members of the Norton Rose Fulbright team running masterclasses.
Michael Grupp, co-founder and CEO of Bryter, told Artificial Lawyer: ‘It is a fantastic initiative by Norton Rose Fulbright and York Law School. We have been involved in similar projects in other countries and young lawyers are asking for digital tools in most law schools. It is more than we could handle, so we are glad to partner with Norton Rose Fulbright to help with mentoring and to guide this project.’
While Jeremy Coleman, Norton Rose EMEA innovation manager, commented: ‘Opening up the industry to new ways of working is increasingly valuable, as legal teams become multidisciplinary and skillsets adapt. Our Newcastle Hub is a prime example of where such teams and skillsets do merge.’
And, as noted, this kind of project is going to be a growing area in legal education -combining a large commercial law firm to provide students with real world mentoring, bringing in a legal tech company to provide a tool set, and then mixing together techies and wannabe lawyers – with hopefully the end result that you get young people enthused about leveraging legal technology and feeling confident in using it.
Law firms have sometimes struggled to find the right people to fill this growing need, meanwhile, many young lawyers or students in law courses report they want to learn more about how to wield technology. So, a win win.
Professor J Scott Slorach, Director of Learning and Teaching and Chair, Board of Studies, University of York, concluded: ‘Digital transformation is shaping every field of commercial activity. This new legal practice and technology module will give our students real insight into how technology is transforming the business of law as well as practical project-based experience.’