Editor’s Note: Reposted from Dewey B Strategic with author’s permission.
BySr. Director of Information, Research & Knowledge at DLA Piper US, LLP.
The recent AALL Annual Conference in Austin was “hands down,” the most exciting AALL Program I have ever attended. The programs were great – it was often hard to decide which panel to attend. I found my own panels (Moneyball Analytics and Hits and Misses in New Products) up against programs that I hated to miss (the Innovation Tournament and an “all star” CEO panel (Fastcase – Walters, Casetext – Heller, Ross – Aruda, Ravel – Lewis) on AI and analytics prodded and provoked by moderator Prof, Susan Nevelow Mart.
Legal Tech thought leaders Bob Ambrogi and Kevin O’Keefe were a familiar sight at the panets, events, exhibits (and the nightly Fastcase after party). Earlier this week Ambrogi lauded AALL as one of the best conferences for those interested in legal tech. Is the market finally getting what information professionals have known all along? The legal profession requires content experts to navigate the burgeoning market of AI and analytics offerings. AALL: The Other Legal Tech Conference
The Second Oldest Legal Profession
I spent time in the exhibit hall with Lexblog’s Kevin O’Keefe who commented on the quality and variety of panels and programs at the conference.
O’Keefe was surprised to learn that AALL had been around since 1906. In fact, in the legal community, only the American Bar Association has an earlier founding …1878. AALL predates every other law related association by decades. It was 65 years before the Association of Legal Administrators was founded in 1971, 74 years before ILTA was founded in 1980, 79 years before the Legal Marketing Association was founded in 1985.
O’Keefe also commented on the importance of information professionals by comparison to other law firm administrative functions. “Lawyers could still practice law without technology, or marketing or administrative help, but legal information always was and remains core to the practice of law.”
O’Keefe has a point which goes beyond the core practice of law. Law firms have become complex, regional, national and multi-national organizations. Business intelligence and legal knowledge has never been more critical to the current high stakes competitive market, no one else in the firm is better qualified to assess the potential value of research products offering AI and analytics… and yet…information professionals occupy relatively few seats in the legal C-Suite compared to the technologists and marketing professionals. The person who understand the quality of information should be at the table and not down the organization chart out of ear shot.
But this may be about to change… Continue reading