LSB considers how education might adapt to ensure legal professionals can use and shape new technology


The Legal Services Board (LSB) is considering how education and regulation might change to ensure legal professionals embrace technology to better meet the needs of consumers. This follows the release of a new episode in the LSB’s ‘Talking Tech’ podcast series on LegalTech education. It comes as technology plays an increasingly vital role in enabling providers to continue providing legal services where possible in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

In the episode, Dr Adam Wyner, Associate Professor of Law and Computer Science at Swansea University, considers the challenges presented by legal technology and the knowledge and skills required to deliver services effectively and ethically.

The podcast accompanies a paper by Dr Adam Wyner that outlines five propositions which he recommends regulators promote to achieve this:

  1. Standards for and openness of legal information and processes;
  2. Integration of professional legal services with government legal services and the judicial system;
  3. Responsible AI;
  4. Alignment of LegalTech education with the Legal Services Board’s regulatory objectives;
  5. Hybrid courses and programs in Law and Computer Science.

The paper also discusses ways that LegalTech education may be future-proofed.

The paper and podcast episode are part of the LSB’s ongoing research series: Developing approaches to regulation for the use of technology in legal services. The LSB will draw on these and other insights to inform its approach and assist the frontline regulators to respond effectively to LawTech.

Dr Helen Phillips, Chair of the Legal Services Board, said:

“Covid-19 has sharpened the focus on the role of technology in providing legal services to people who need them. The pandemic has increased the need for some legal services, particularly among vulnerable groups, and we want to ensure technology improves access to justice for everyone.

“Innovations like AI, blockchain and machine learning will play a key role in reshaping legal services to better meet the needs of society by making it cheaper to deliver services and easier for consumers to access them.

“As we evolve the regulatory environment alongside this, it’s important that lawtech education is aligned. This will ensure professionals not only feel confident about using and shaping technology, but they are also clear about their responsibilities, particularly when it comes to protecting consumers.”

The episode on LawTech education is the fifth in the series.

The podcast is also available on Apple Podcasts, Android players, Spotify and PodBean.

Resources

About Dr Adam Wyner

Adam Wyner has PhDs in Linguistics (Cornell University, 1994) and Computer Science (King’s College London, 2008). Currently an Associate Professor at Swansea University and holding a joint position in the School of Law and Department of Computer Science, he lectures and conducts research on Artificial Intelligence and Law. He has published on natural language processing (rule-based and machine learning), information extraction, ontologies, argumentation, controlled languages, case based reasoning, policy consultations, semantic web, and a machine-readable standard language for legal rules.


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