Innovation in the Law: Whose Perspectives Should We Seek?

Over the past several weeks, there has been a flurry of new ideas for revamping our legal system. But whose ideas should we seek out?

We should seek out ideas from people that are experienced users of the legal system but also from people who are new to the legal system. The experienced users have an accumulated stock of knowledge to learn from. While novice users have an easier time questioning assumptions and seeing the absurdity in antiquated processes.

In the Podcast WorkLife With Adam Grant, “Career Decline Isn’t Inevitable”, Adam Grant points out that cognitive entrenchment increases as expertise increases. As a person acquires more expertise, they lose the flexibility around problem solving, adaptation, and creative idea generation. That is why we often see Eureka moments for young innovators who are new to a field. “As you accumulate knowledge, you get stuck in your ways and stop gaining new perspectives.”

However, Adam Grant states that it is never too late to innovate. Experts can innovate through staying curious and by trying new approaches. He gives the example of Darwin who continued to make discoveries throughout his life.

When revamping our legal system, we should ask as many different people as possible for their ideas. But we should ensure that the perspectives of young people are heard too.


(Views are my own and do not reflect the views of any organization.)


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