During your time in Hamburg, you will establish a foundation by which to examine the future of legal service operations. You will learn from excellent professors, work with participants from around the world and put your newly-acquired skills into practice.
Over the course of three weeks, you will take part in core sessions, supplementary lectures and a discussion series to gain an understanding of technologies and processes that you will be able to apply to your own career.
- Core sessions involve treatment of examples relating to small, medium and large law firms, the justice system and non-profit legal service organizations.
- Assignments in individual class meetings will enable you to build skills in project management, data collection and the application of metrics.
Having gained an understanding of legal service delivery processes, theoretical discussions will help you to identify areas for improvement.
Applying your skills and knowledge, you will join an international team and devise a capstone project in which you will seek to address this deficiency in legal practice.
"The Berlin excursion was certainly a highlight of the program! The class bonded a lot over this trip! And most of the ideas for the Capstone Project came from the presentations we were given in Berlin." - from program evaluation
The program includes a multiple-day study trip that allows participants to learn how theory is put into practice in the real world. In 2022 and 2023, students visited various companies, firms and organizations in Berlin (read an article about the 2022 trip).
In 2018 and 2019, participants were taken beyond the Bucerius campus with a two-day excursion to Frankfurt am Main to take part in workshops at a legal innovation hub and engage in discussion with practitioners from a leading alternative legal services provider.
- Course load: students follow a set curriculum that earns them 5 ABA or 10 ECTS credits
- Classes: Monday through Friday between 10 am and 5 pm for three weeks
- Extracurricular program: coordinated with the schedule as to not overlap with courses
- Although not accredited by the American Bar the program follows the ABA's standards for Student Study at a Foreign Institution
- Depending on the credit system at their home university, students can choose to earn 5 US ABA or 10 ECTS credits
- The home institution decides which and how many credits to accept for transfer
- Grading scale: A+ to F
- Capstone Project (75%): Group assignment that receives an overall grade with the individual contribution being assessed to raise or lower the student's individual grade
- In-cass participation (25%): Attendance and active participation in at least 80% of program activities is required
Participants who successfully complete the program will receive a certificate of participation and transcript of grades.
The curriculum for 2024 is being confirmed.
Students will gain an understanding of entrepreneurial thinking and design’s role in legal business model evolution and innovation by applying modern business principles and methods as lawyers, strategists and consultants. The learning objectives are:
- active practice of legal business design*: using management frameworks, ethnographic methods and design techniques to find, frame and solve problems;
- ability to analyze, examine, and explain core elements of a business model, with emphasis on contrasting the traditional law practice model with emerging modern models;
*Legal Business Design is a distinctive methodology for finding, framing, and solving business challenges and opportunities for how legal services are delivered. It draws upon social science, design, entrepreneurship, and strategy to create new business value - from innovative new products, services and processes to creative strategies and business models.
The legal profession is gradually becoming part of a broader industry that encompasses both lawyers and sophisticated professionals from other disciplines. This structural shift is driven by the gradual adoption of innovations that are changing how legal problems are solved. The purpose of this session is to provide participants with a solid theoretical and practical grounding on the current state of the legal industry and where it's likely headed over the next ten to twenty years. Participants will acquire a strong working knowledge of innovation diffusion theory, which is an interdisciplinary field that draws upon decades of research from sociology, anthropology, marketing, communications, geography, public health, education and various other disciplines. They will also have access to curated guest lecturers who work on the cutting edge of legal innovation. Participants who complete all of the requisite work will see a wider array of career opportunities and be better positioned to weigh their professional options.
The structure of this session will rely heavily on team-based learning, which closely resembles the work environment of many new emerging businesses. The assessment will be based on a combination of individual preparation, team work product, active class engagement and individual contributions to team performance.
Participants will receive an introduction to the emerging fields of Legal Analytics and Artificial Intelligence. The session will begin with a brief history of artificial intelligence and artificial intelligence + law. Then, we will turn our attention to data driven applications of such methods. Our goal is to introduce participants to understand the process of extracting actionable knowledge from data, to distinguish themselves in legal proceedings involving data or analysis, and to assist in firm and in-house management, including billing, case forecasting, process improvement, resource management and financial operations. Participants will review real world use cases including those involving prediction, risk management and operations. They will also explore how to communicate data driven insights to a non-technical audience through visualization and user interfaces.
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Online dispute resolution (ODR) leverages technology and human-centred design to fundamentally re-orient the justice system around the needs of the public. Building on the example of the Civil Resolution Tribunal, the world's first public ODR body, as well initiatives from other countries, this practical session will look at how to use agile development principles, data, and user-centricity to reform and re-design public justice system processes for a modern world. We will also examine how lawyers can both drive and benefit from public justice reform.
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Networks are everywhere. Lawyers use them to get to work (infrastructure networks), to seek advice (social networks), and to do research (information networks). They craft them (citation networks), oversee them (financial networks), and fight them (criminal networks). Upon closer inspection, almost anything can be modeled as a network: a collection of entities, combined with a collection of relationships between those entities. Legal network science studies how legal phenomena can be represented as networks and investigates what we can gain from their quantification and visualization. This session introduces the network perspective on law and teaches the basics of legal network science, with a focus on its potential to improve legal practice.
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Legal Technology exists in a framework of existing regulation, i.e. professional regulation. These laws govern what lawyers can and cannot do. In this session, students will look at different approaches to regulating the changing legal landscape and their effects on the technology ecosystem of law firms, law companies (a.k.a. alternative legal service providers), and legal technology companies both in the B2B and B2C spaces.
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