Paul L. Caron
Dean


Friday, May 10, 2013

Reinventing Law (and Law School)

Legal RebelsABA Journal Legal Rebels: How This Duo Is Trying to ReInvent Law School, by Daniel Martin Katz (Michigan State) & Renee Newman Knake (Michigan State):

Greetings from ReInvent Law, our law laboratory devoted to technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship at Michigan State University College of Law. You read that right. We are law professors with a laboratory where we teach technology, analytics, innovation, and entrepreneurship in legal services. We are law professors devoted to training lawyers for the law jobs of the 21st century. And yes, math will be on the exam. This is the New Normal in legal education.

The legal services and products industry is undergoing a significant transition. For many current and future legal jobs, understanding the law is a necessary but no longer sufficient condition for success. We believe that part of the solution to the crisis currently facing the law profession and legal education involves principles of technology, legal analytics, design thinking, and the advent of new, process-driven delivery models.

(Hat Tip: Greg McNeal.)

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2013/05/reinventing-law.html

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Comments

Funny that you never see this type of thing at the top schools in the country (i.e. Michigan and Chicago, where these two attended). Those students would see right through this charade.

This proves two axioms I've noticed when academics embark on solving a problem:

1) The solution must depend on something they themselves are capable of providing.

2. The solution cannot require that they give up anything that matters to them.

Posted by: JM | May 10, 2013 7:18:45 AM

How are you going to get pre-laws to study science and math? Most of them won't get into law school if they have to take real classes instead of the Baby Math and Baby Physics they now take to maintain their GPAs.

Posted by: Jimbino | May 10, 2013 8:31:08 AM

What would be the difference between the entrepreneurship pedagogy taught here, and that taught in any business school? Technology, analytics, innovation, and entrepreneurship are all taught in business school. People wanting to do this can skip law school altogether and just go to business school.

Posted by: KHJ | May 10, 2013 11:26:32 AM

If people could teach "creativity," "innovation," and "entrepreneurship" they probably wouldn't be law professors. All of this sounds great, but what it means in practice is hiring a group of mediocre people to make students more efficient cannon fodder for local law firms who will then dismiss them after two or three years of work. I really think that the people who are not seriously interested in teaching and scholarship would provide the most help to the legal academy by leaving it.

Posted by: michael livingston | May 11, 2013 5:15:37 AM

"All of this sounds great, but what it means in practice is hiring a group of mediocre people to make students more efficient cannon fodder for local law firms who will then dismiss them after two or three years of work."

Michael, you have just perfectly described the current law school and legal hiring pedagogy, except at the moment we unemployed lawyers are but INefficient cannon fodder.

Posted by: Unemployed Northeastern | May 11, 2013 11:20:38 AM