Getting Serious About the Future of the Legal Services Industry : Restaurant Chains Have Managed to Combine Quality Control, Cost Control, and Innovation. Can Health Care { or for that matter Legal Services } ?

Just remember that the turmoil in the legal services industry offers both possibility and peril.  At our  ReInventLaw Lab we are all about the possibility …

One of my last conversations with the late Larry Ribstein was about the very idea in this article … not applied to medicine but rather to law … What if the sort of processing engineering that gave rise to the CheeseCake Factory was a play in the delivery of legal services?  Very solid food ( yes I know it is not 5 star dining ) but it is quite affordable for most folks on a Friday night 🙂

Suffice to say this (and legal information engineering) is where a significant of the growth (jobs) in the legal services industry will be located (as we showcased at our recent London event … and will do so at our upcoming Dubai and Silicon Valley events)

If you are a law student reading this post – please understand that you can be a leader in this space as it is still in its infancy.  There are lots of law startups working in this and allied domains but it is highly unlikely that your law school can help you acquire the skills you need to play ball in this arena … If you want to do what is described above you need a mixture of skills (not just law) …

Here are the four pillars — { law + tech + design + delivery } and that is precisely what we are teaching in the ReInventLaw Lab and the Michigan State 21st Century Law Practice Summer Program in London.  If you want to be part of the action … it is not too late … shoot me an email … and will tell you how to get serious … because the time for action is now

Big Data: The Next Frontier for Innovation, Competition and Productivity [Via McKinsey Global Institute]

There is growing interest in “Big Data” – both within the academy and within the private sector. For example, consider several major review articles on the topic including “Big Data” from Nature, “The Data Deluge” from The Economist and “Dealing with Data” from Science.

Indeed, those interested should consult the proceedings/video from recent conferences such as Princeton CITP Big Data 2010, (where I presented on the Big Data and Law panel) GigaOM 2011 NYC, O’Reilly Strata 2011 Making Data Work Conference, etc.  Summarizing some of these insights and providing new insights is a new report for the McKinsey Global Institute entitled Big Data: The Next Frontier for Innovation, Competition and Productivity. This report was the subject of a recent NY Times article New Ways to Exploit Raw Data May Bring Surge of Innovation, a Study Says. Here is one highlight from this article “McKinsey says the nation will also need 1.5 million more data-literate managers, whether retrained or hired. The report points to the need for a sweeping change in business to adapt a new way of managing and making decisions that relies more on data analysis. Managers, according to the McKinsey researchers, must grasp the principles of data analytics and be able to ask the right questions.”

Of course, here at Computational Legal Studies, we are interested in the potential of a Big Data revolution in both legal practice and in the scientific study of law and legal institutions.  Several recent articles on the subject argue that a major reordering is — well — already underway.  For example, Law’s Information Revolution (By Bruce H. Kobayashi & Larry Ribstein), The Practice of Law in the Era of ‘Big Data’ (By Nolan M. Goldberg and Micah W. Miller) and Computer Programming and the Law: A New Research Agenda (By Paul Ohm) highlight different elements of the broader question.

We hope to share additional thoughts on this topic in the months to come. In the meantime, I would highlight the slides from my recent presentation at the NELIC Conference at Berkeley Law.  My brief talk was entitled Quantitative Legal Prediction and it is a preview of some of my thoughts on the changing market for legal services.  Please stay tuned.

Public / Win 10^100 Google Project Funding

Congratulations to Carl Malamud and for being selected as a Google 10^100 project winner! Among other things, the $2 million grant “will support the Law.Gov initiative, which aims to make all primary legal materials in the United States available to all.” I had the pleasure of presenting at the UC-Boulder meeting and Texas meeting earlier this year. Thus, I am very excited about Google’s decision to fund this very worthy project. For those who are interested in reading more, O’Reilly Radar has additional information on the / google 10^100 announcement here.