The Professional Law Institute team comprises Senior Lecturers who are qualified lawyers with a focus on practice-based education.
The State of Innovation in Professional Legal Services - report launch
On October 1 2020, the PLI hosted the launch of a new report, 'The State of Innovation in Professional Services Firms,' compiled by Spiranti, Meridian West, and Earlsferry Advisory, presented with support from the PLI. The authors explained what their research tells us about the drivers and limits on innovation, the implementation of legal technology, and how firms can benefit from the report’s benchmarking tools. This was followed by a Q&A moderated by the PLI’s Chris Howard.
Click here to find out more and watch a recording of the event.
To download the full report, click on the 'Resources' tab above.
Future of Legal Practice lecture series continues online
On June 24, 2020, the PLI hosted an online panel event, 'Essential Skills for Future Lawyers: What Skills do Young Lawyers Need for 21st Century Practice', with speakers Roger Parker and Nigel Spencer and moderated by Chris Howard. Over 250 participants joined them in their discussion that included topics like evolving client needs, soft and hard skills for future lawyers, career development and lawyer/client relationships. Our speakers addressed the ever-evolving landscape of the legal field and took participant's questions regarding issues that are affecting the legal sector now and into the future.
Click here to view the event online.
Work with the International Bar Association
As part of the PLI’s external outreach programme, the team are all active members of the International Bar Association (IBA), with Chris Howard as the Treasurer of the IBA’s Academic and Professional Development Committee.
Recent engagements include:
May 2020 - Chris Howard joined IBA colleagues to discuss education during and after the Covid-19 pandemic. The panellists discussed matters such as class dynamics, evolving student needs, assessment strategies, teaching methodologies for engaging online learners, resources for instructors and for students, and much more. As panellists offered solutions and perspectives for varying issues, viewers sent in pressing questions for discussion among the group. Click here to view this panel discussion.
September 2019 - Chris Howard attended the 2019 IBA annual conference (pictured below), organising a panel session “Comparative Law: What do Lawyers in Practice Really Need to Know.” Speakers included Farnush Ghadery, a King’s PhD candidate and member of The Dickson Poon School of Law’s Transnational Law Institute.
April 2019 – Jo Bingham participated in an IBA panel event at Istanbul University which provided an insight into the life of a lawyer in a modern legal practice for aspiring professionals
October 2018 – Chris Howard attended the 2018 IBA annual conference and convened a panel on “Pathways to Legal Qualification.”
Chris Howard joins seminar with Meridan West
In May 2020, Chris Howard joined a panel of speakers for a breakfast seminar discussing 'How to keep the skills of your team fresh and relevant.’ The seminar was hosted by Meridian West, a collaborator firm working with the PLI, and was part of a series of events they were hosting during the COVID-19 pandemic.
To view Chris's session, please click here.
Conference on 'Lawyering in the Digital Age'
The PLI co-sponsored, along with Radboud University, University of Florida, King’s College London, Lyon Catholic University and IE University, this conference held in Amsterdam on 17 and 18 October 2019. The aim was to bring together practitioners, academics and LegalTech companies from different legal systems in order to discuss the implications posed by LegalTech and to suggest an unbiased, but cautious, approach for the engagement of technology in legal practice.
Dr. Mateja Durovic, Reader in Contract and Commercial Law at the Dickson Poon School, attended and chaired a panel discussion.
Hosting ‘Legaltech Venture Day’
The PLI was delighted to host the London leg of the 2019 Global Legaltech Venture Day. Taking place in a number of countries worldwide, the Legaltech Venture Day is a competition aimed at discovering tech start-ups that are tackling the major challenges faced by legal operators. The Day was an opportunity to hear fresh ideas, make contacts and hear from some of the key speakers in the Legaltech field.
As well as hosting the event, Chris Howard sat on the jury to decide the winner. This went to Just:Access, pictured below with Chris Howard, a fledgling start-up developing user-centred tech-based products to increase access to law and justice. They will take on other regional finalists in an event held in Madrid.
Find out more about the event on IE Law School’s website, one of the PLI's partners in hosting the day.
Irish Legal Services Regulatory Authority Symposium
Chris Howard spoke in September 2019 at the Legal Services Regulatory Authority Symposium on Legal Education and Training at Croke Park in Dublin. Dr Stephen Daly also facilitated the event which was a fascinating insight into explorations into legal education reform in Ireland.
The Law and Technology Education Network
The PLI is part of the Law and Technology Education Network, a network of academics across the UK established by the University of Oxford. Sam Malhotra and Chris Howard presented to the network at their first conference in July 2019.
The PLI is proud to be working with a number of partners for the delivery of our vision for Professional Legal Education at King’s. These include:
- The International Bar Association
- BARBRI International
- The Law Society
- The Bar Council
- Inns of Court College of Advocacy
- Meridian West
- Earlsferry Advisory
- The O-Shaped Lawyer Project
- IE University, Madrid
- Nick West, Chief Strategy Officer at Mishcon de Reya, Advisor to the PLI on legal technology
- Law and Technology Education Network - a network of academics across the UK established by the University of Oxford
- Adam Curphey, Senior Innovation Manager at Mayer Brown
- Amanda Chaboryk, Disputes and Litigation Data Lead at Norton Rose Fullbright LLP
The State of Innovation in Professional Services Firms (October 2020)
With a focus on legal practice, this report has been compiled by our colleagues at Meridian West, Spiranti, and Earlsferry Advisory with support from the PLI. Developed through wide-ranging consultation and research, the report offers a snapshot of the professions at a fundamental moment in their evolution and provides a set of benchmarking tools for firms of all sizes to help them embrace innovation. Aimed at professionals and law students, it is the latest contribution to the ongoing debate on innovation.
October 2020 - Reed Smith’s Innovation Engagement Manager, Adam Curphey, to act as a consultant to the Professional Law Institute
The PLI is delighted to announce that Adam Curphey, Innovation Engagement Manager for leading international law firm Reed Smith LLP, has agreed to act as a Consultant to the PLI on the development of new professional education initiatives in the field of Legal Technology.
Adam is the Innovation Engagement Manager at Reed Smith where he works with clients and internal legal, technology, and knowledge professionals to identify efficiency and transformational gains, and is responsible for administering the firm’s internal innovation programme. His work involves helping to understand client and internal pain points and then designing and developing innovative solutions, taking a people-process-technology approach. A capital markets solicitor by training, Adam has a passion for future lawyer skills, having previously worked at BPP University as a lecturer and innovation head where he was responsible for introducing new educational and legal technology solutions. He is also an active member of the O-Shaped Lawyer steering group and the Lawtech UK education taskforce.
‘We are very excited to have Adam on board to help us realise our goals in the new and fast-moving world of Legal Technology education. He brings with him not only a wealth of knowledge about how to incorporate innovation and legal technology into the legal profession but also great professional legal educational experience and a true growth mindset’ said Chris Howard, Director of Professional Legal Education.