CCH Canada was kind enough to let me write a column in their monthly e-newsletter for Canadian law students. I had not realized though that it was possible to get a free archive of these (and other CCH newsletters) online and to register to receive them. The articles (not mine!) are quite good and I assume (or hope) that students can benefit from the newsletters.
My column last month was entitled “Managing Legal Knowledge: KM Demystified.” Although most of my columns focused on legal research, I thought it important to introduce students to formal law-related KM since – unless they summered at a large firm – they would in most cases not have been taught or exposed to knowledge management in law school despite many of them (informally) engaging in KM throughout law school through the sharing of course summaries, online chatting (even during class!) and the like.
An example I like to use when explaining KM to law students is to imagine the following scenario (of course keeping in mind prohibitions against academic plagiarism): What if at law school you had easy (online) access to every course summary, your professor’s notes and slides, past exams and model form answers, all essays written by all law students organized by topic and course, etc. This sharing of knowledge (not appropriate in an academic setting due to plagiarism concerns) starts to mirror what most law firms are trying to do and is a good example of leveraging the sharing of knowledge.