New Graduate Degree in Innovation in Law and Technology

Though change is afoot and disruption is underway, many practitioners wouldn’t know it from their day to day practice. Although we would all love to see more technology and innovation in law school, for those of us who may have passed the bar some time ago that simply isn’t an option.

Earlier this summer, UofT launched 3 new streams for their Global Professional LLM. The stream in the Law of Leadership will seek to prepare the future decision makers in law, the Canadian Law in a Global Context stream will look at the effects of globalization, and the Innovation, Law and Technology stream will prepare a variety of professionals to understand the relationship and impacts of law and technology.

What’s interesting about this GPLLM is that it does not require an LLB/JD for admissions. It’s intended to be interdisciplinary, bringing together lawyers, entrepreneurs, IT, finance, and other professionals. In fact, the majority are not lawyers.

The curriculum obviously covers some basic fundamentals of law, especially for the non-lawyers. The technology and innovation course offerings include artificial intelligence, privacy, cryptocurrencies, informatics, health impacts, and technology ventures. The faculty include several practitioners and academics who have already left their mark on technology and innovation.

The GPLLM appears to be more grounded in theory and provides an important counterweight to the incubators and accelerators that have sprung up in recent years in Canada. It would provide a forum for consolidation of much of the disparate best practices scattered about the legal tech and innovation space.

Hopefully it will bring in more non-lawyers into the legal space to foster better solution generation.

Comments

  1. Impressed at the initiative and would love to undertake it one day — although as I’ve said elsewhere, had I my druthers this wouldn’t be styled as an LL.M. but as a management degree. In my view, improving law practice management and innovating on how “law”-ish services are delivered has a lot to do with increasing the flow of ideas and practice with other verticals. Placing this in a non-sector-specific disciplinary setting would be a nice step in that direction — and mesh well with the sensitivity of many in-house counsel with an interest in this area to avoid relegation to a “lawyer box”.

  2. Hi Bram. We’d love to hear your ideas about our new program. Please feel free to get in touch with me at audrey.fried@utoronto.ca.

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