Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Missing Middle in Legal Education



The University of New South Wales (UNSW) Law School has just started a new blog called "lawschoolvibe". For those that have sat through a course of mine on the legal profession will immediately recognize that as the key moment in modern jurisprudence when Dennis Denuto, in The Castle, is called on by the judge to specify which part of the Australian constitution he is referring to:




They asked me to write a piece for them, which I've done about one of the failings of legal education generally and the Legal Education and Training Review/Report in particular.

June 2013 marked the publication of the Legal Education and Training Review report(LETR) in the UK. Two years of research commissioned by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Bar Standards Board, and ILEX Professional Standards. Three hundred and fifty pages later, we are not much further forward.
There is a delicate balance in reviewing legal education between the local and the global; between the theoretical and the practical; and between the future and the present. LETR gamely steers its way around these obstacles without recommending too much change to the present system or favouring one over the other. It’s missed some opportunities.
I will focus on one here—the balance between the future and the present. Richard Susskind was a consultant to LETR and wrote an interesting paper about the technological changes reverberating through the legal services market. (Please note the language: legal services market and providers, lawyers are only one segment of a fragmented market these days.) Occasionally Susskind refers to legal education. Not much of what he said has infused the LETR report, which is a shame.
The rest of the post is here at lawschoolvibe...



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