Avainsana: law

Episode 51: Joining the Boring Revolution with Indy Johar

Indy Johar,

This week we meet with Indy Johar from Dark Matter Labs to discuss why and how our systems of governance should be reformed and why we need all professionals, including lawyers, joining this “Boring revolution”.  We, of course, look things from the legal (design) perspective so we concentrate on what role (legal) design has in making our societies fit for the needs of the 21st Century.

Global crises will become more frequent in the future, due to climate change escalating other phenomena, we need to create new, agile ways to manage unpredictable force majeure type of events. There might be situations where governments have only a few hours to react in order to protect their citizens, or just 24 hours to pass a new law. The new reality will demand us to change also the way we design regulation – or what we think a regulation is in the first place. There is a tremendous need for law to change and the required work might seem overwhelming, but Indy puts us back on track and reminds us that there are examples of gigantic systemic change.

We also cover some big topics like democracy and talk about the need for creating better legal concepts and models, such as property right or legal personhood, to transform governance.

Indy Johar is focused on the strategic design of new super scale civic assets for transition – specifically at the intersection of financing, contracting and governance for deeply democratic futures.

Indy is co-founder of darkmatterlabs.org and of the RIBA award winning architecture and urban practice Architecture00 – https://www.architecture00.net, a founding director of open systems lab – https://www.opensystemslab.io (digitising planning), seeded WikiHouse (open source housing) – https://www.wikihouse.cc  and Open Desk (open source furniture company) https://www.opendesk.cc.

Indy is a non-executive international Director of the BloxHub https://bloxhub.org (Denmark Copenhagen) – the Nordic Hub for sustainable urbanization and was 2016-17 Graham Willis Visiting Professorship at Sheffield University.  He was also Studio Master at the Architectural Association – 2019-2020, UNDP Innovation Facility Advisory Board Member  2016-20 and RIBA Trustee 2017-20. He has taught & lectured at various institutions from the University of Bath, TU-Berlin; University College London, Princeton, Harvard, MIT and New School. 

Most recently, he was awarded the London Design Medal for Innovation in 2022.

Episode 41: Meaningful Work Makes Happier Lawyers with Frank Martela

Frank Martela.

Doing meaningful work will promote happiness and increase your life satisfaction and doing work you hate will make you miserable. This is obvious, of course, but yet there are many lawyers who stay in jobs that aren’t right for them.

It is hard to make a change because we have the image of perfectly successful lawyer in our head and that image might not be what we want from our working life.  During the podcast series, we have talked to some ”recovering lawyers” who have found themselves miserable and made bold career changes. In this episode we concentrate on meaningfulness in work life and how important it is for all of us.

In this episode we get to meet philosopher and researcher Frank Martela. Experiencing purpose and meaning is a fundamental part of having a good life – also according to science – and many people make career changes, such as becoming a legal designer, in search of it. But how do you make your work feel more purposeful if it already doesn’t? Frank will share some useful and practical insights for both indiciduals and organizations on meaningful work backed up by scientific research.  

We also talk about problem solving and learn that philosophy actually might have an interesting connection to design thinking. If you thought that philosophy is far from the practical every day life, this episode is really for you because after listening to Frank, you will want to start to apply philosophy into your daily (working) life. 

And of course, we had to take the opportunity to pop up the big question: What’s the meaning of life?

Frank Martela, PhD, is a philosopher and researcher of psychology specialized in meaningfulness, human motivation and how organizations and institutions can unleash human potential. He is a University Lecturer at Aalto University, Finland, and has two Ph.D. ’s from organizational research (2012 Aalto University) and practical philosophy (2019 University of Helsinki). His scientific publications have appeared in journals ranging from Journal of Personality, Nature Human Behaviour, and European Review of Social Psychology to Southern Journal of Philosophy, Metaphilosophy, Academy of Management Review, and Organization Studies. He has spoken at universities on four continents including Harvard and Stanford, written for Scientific American Mind, and Harvard Business Review, and been interviewed by New York Times, Le Monde, New Scientist, and Discover Magazine, among others. His book A Wonderful Life – Insights on Finding a Meaningful Experience (HarperCollins 2020) has been translated to 27 languages including French, Spanish, German, Japanese, Korean, and Indonesian.

Episode 31: Developing the Brazilian Legal System by Design with José Faleiros

José Faleiros Jr.

The Brazilian legal system is facing many challenges and undergoing major changes due to application of new technologies. As we know, law itself changes slowly but legal design can assist in this change and bring out the positive. This week we talk to José Faleiros Jr., a Brazilian lawyer and the co-editor and co-author of the book ”Legal Design: Teoria e Prática”.

We can’t deny that there are very complex problems to be solved. A solid judicial system is crucial for democracy. To be solid, it needs to be efficient and it needs to be trustworthy. Legal Design helps to create efficiency, and as a consequence, trust.

José tells about the Brazilian legal system and its challenges. For example, in 2020 the Brazilian judicial system had 75 million legal processes lacking a solution. A solid judicial system is also crucial for democracy. And to be solid, the system needs to be efficient and trustworthy and this is where legal design can help.

José Faleiros Jr. is a Brazilian lawyer and a Ph.D Candidate in Civil Law at the University of São Paulo and also a Ph.D Candidate in Law, Technology and Innovation at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil. José has focused his professional work and his academic research on cyberlaw, especially on themes such as Internet regulation, personal data protection, AI impacts, blockchain, cryptocurrencies and tort law. José has long been interested in how design might have impacts on law and has dedicated himself to studying such impacts by investing in design as a hobby. Among other publications, he is the co-editor and co-author of the book ”Legal Design: Teoria e Prática”, published in Brazil by Editora Foco, in April 2021.

Episode 27: Merging Law, Design and Engineering with Lab de Diseño Para la Justicia

Laura Guzman-Abello, Santiago Pardo Rodríguez and Santiago De Francisco Vela.

We’ve discuss a lot about interdisciplinarity and team work in this podcast. Now it’s time to hear from from the experts how to merge design, legal and engineering expertise.

This week we discuss the role of interdisciplinarity, human emotions and engineering skills in legal design. We hear what lawyers, engineers and designers could learn from each other, and how to combine these three fields of expertise into one when designing better access to justice solutions. We also hear what positive design is and why lawyers should care more about emotions. But why would engineers already make great legal innovators? And what explains the popularity of legal design in Colombia?

Our guests in this episode lead The Design for Justice Lab, Lab de Diseño Para la Justicia, a joint venture founded in 2019 between the law, design and engineering schools in Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia.

The Lab integrates design thinking and systems thinking into law school curriculums with the purpose to improve the judicial system. Santiago Pardo Rodríguez is a lawyer and the founding member of the Lab, Laura Guzman-Abello is an industrial engineer engaged in policy design, and Santiago De Francisco Vela is a designer specialised in emotions and positive design. Together with their students this brilliant trio is on a mission to improve the future of law in Colombia. Tune in to hear how it is about to happen.

Santiago De Francisco Vela is a designer and professor in the School of Design at the University of Los Andes in Bogotá Colombia. He has been working in emotions and positive design, fostering emotional experiences and positive behaviors through product design. His areas of interest involve design for well-being, financial and social innovation, and behavioral design. He is a member of the Design for Justice Lab.

Laura Guzman-Abello is an industrial engineer who works in research and consultancy in design, strategy and organizational management oriented towards the design of public policy. Her work focuses on decision-making processes and engineering designs with a systemic and participatory approach. She has worked with public sector entities, international organizations, and universities. She is a lecturer of the School of Engineering at Universidad de los Andes and a Design for Justice Lab member.

Santiago Pardo Rodríguez is a lawyer, with an LLM from the Universidad de los Andes, an MSc in Law, Anthropology and Society from the London School of Economics & Political Science, and a Master of the Science of Law from Stanford University. His research areas are Constitucional Law, Judicial Systems, Empirical Legal Studies, and Legal Design applied to justice. He is a founding member of the Design for Justice Lab.

The Design for Justice Lab (DJL) is a joint venture founded in 2019 between the Schools of Law, Design, and Engineering of Universidad de los Andes that integrates design thinking and systems thinking to law school curriculums to think in new ways to overcome access to justice barriers in Colombia. The projects go through a process of exploration, ideation and prototyping with the purpose of improving the judicial system.
https://labjusticia.uniandes.edu.co/

Episode 22: Measuring the Impact of Contract Design with Katri Nousiainen

Katri Nousiainen.

“I personally believe that we need law and economics, and economic theory of legal design. We need to have these to do the scientific measurement, which is necessary for legal design to be seen as a state of a science – and this will naturally facilitate further its use.” says Katri Nousiainen.

There is increasing interest and demand towards contract design. While contract design might be a daily activity in some of the organizations, others might need more prove of why it is important and what’s the impact of contract design. When the impact of design can be scientifically measured, it will make the use of design methods in legal context more appealing as the positive effects for the business can be seen clearly.

But how to measure the impact? This week we are joined by Katri Nousiainen who is conducting her PhD study that focuses on the total impact of design in the framework of commercial contracts. Katri tells us about her reasearch work and explains why research is essential to understand the big picture of contracting. 

Katri Nousiainen is a lawyer and professional in legal education. She is conducting  pioneering empirical research on impact in Legal Design and Ethics in Commercial Contracts  with a twist of Law and Economics. She gives expert legal lectures on various practice areas  of Commercial Law, Legal Design and Law & Technology. She is an invited keynote speaker  at conferences and seminars across Europe. Currently she is conducting her research at the Harvard Law School, in the Center for Legal Profession (US) and at the University of  Cambridge (UK).

Episode 19: Will AI Cause Lawyer Extinction, Jim Chiang?

Jim Chiang.

We kick off the second season with Jim Chiang, the CEO and Founder of My Legal Einstein.After having a relaxing summer break and resting our brains we are back with a bang!

Artificial Intelligence is such a hot potato in the legal industry it deserves an episode of its own. And there certainly can’t be value adding AI without design thinking behind it. We are joined by Jim Chiang who is a pioneer when it comes to AI and is now leading My Legal Einstein on its journey to help lawyers find better ways of working.

We lawyers are known for our not so functional ways of working. Most of our processes are based on manual work and we still do a lot of copy-pasting. A few years back there was a lot of discussion about whether or not the robots are going to take over the legal work but we are still at the place where we lack imagination of how to add AI to our work. But this is where Jim can help us lawyers. His examples are so practical that AI actually makes sense, finally. 

The  systems at the moment don’t include high-level reasoning or thought and computers can only do what us humans have taught them to do. One of the goals for Legal Design is to find better ways for lawyers to work so that we can focus on actual legal work and problem solving  instead of wasting our time copy-pasting. But how do we make sure that we don’t teach AI our bad processes and up with AI that just knows how to copy-paste? 

After talking to Jim, we can safely encourage you to set your alarm clocks for tomorrow morning, there is still a need for human lawyers and legal designers. But with the help of AI the future might be a little brighter for lawyers and other professionals working in the legal industry because AI can enhance our ability to perform our tasks and optimize our practices. Tune in to our discussion with Jim to learn what you can expect from AI.

Jim Chiang, CEO and Founder, My Legal Einstein – Before starting My Legal Einstein, Jim led the AI engineering teams at Conga and Icertis, the two market leaders in the CLM (contract lifecycle management) product space.  Jim has served multiple executive roles leading product and engineering organizations.  Jim has over 20 years of experience in big data analytics and AI algorithm development.  Jim holds a Bachelors of Engineering from MIT.

5. Episode: Innovation in Courts with Andrea Lindblom

Andrea Lindblom

Courts, like all legal institutions, are designed for lawyers. However, the people whose lives going to court affect the most are the legal laymen. How these real end-users of courts would benefit, if their needs were addressed by re-designing the court experience?

In this fifth episode of the podcast series we talk about the possibilities of innovation, technology and legal design in courts with Andrea Lindblom, who works as the Chief of Administration in the District Court of Helsingborg, Sweden. 

Courts are known to be the blind services of the justice, pursuing objectivity, formality and the rule of law. For non-lawyers, however, a court process can be full of obscurities and evoke feelings of disconnection, anxiety and lack of control over one’s own case, not to mention the possibility of financial losses. For most of the people going to court is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, often leaving bitter-sweet memories that last for life. But what if legal design could help make the court experience more satisfying, and not just for the end-users but the lawyers as well?

Making courts more human-centric is not the only update courts might need these days. Courts are struggling to keep up with the rapid technological development and the new ways of providing court services in the digital world – all while resources are tight and case numbers going high. Experimenting for new ideas does not come easy, though, as lawyers are traditionally trained to look backwards when solving problems. Design thinking mindsets such as ”fail fast” and ”be curious” are rarely combined to the work done in courts.

How to initiate the needed change in courts, Andrea? “I think it is quite urgent that courts have an open mindset towards, for example, new  technology, and new ways of doing things. We need to find ways to experiment lightly, gently, because it’s much better for us to fail small and early in a process, then massively and late”.

Andrea Lindblom graduated from Lund University (law) in 2009. She has been working at Helsingborg District Court since 2011. During the last few years she has focused on issues relating to the presence of the courts and judges on social media and how digitalization affects the courts. In March 2019 Helsingborg District Court arranged Sweden’s first legal tech & design workshop in the public sector. Andrea was awarded Legal Innovator of the Year in 2019 and was one of the winners in the category Public Services, Politics & Social at European Women of Legal Tech in 2020.

4. Episode: Behavioral Insights into Law with David Tannenbaum

David Tannenbaum

In this episode Nina and Henna talk about nudging and its possibilities and pitfalls in legal design with David Tannenbaum, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Management at the University of Utah’s Eccles School of Business.

Where law seeks to influence human behavior by setting obligations, legal design aims to make those obligations easier to understand and follow by using human centric design methods. Sometimes these methods can encompass behaviorally informed ”nudges”. In behavioral economics nudges are defined as any kind of interventions in the physical or social environment that alters people’s behavior in a predictable way without forbidding any options or significantly changing their economic incentives. So to say, nudges make certain decisions easier, yet without limiting one’s freedom of choice. To put it simply, nudging means guiding people to make better choices by modifying the environment and choice architecture. A fitness app nudges with activity notifications, so does a car navigator showing the best route options.

Nudging, however, also has a reputation of being a psychological trick used in product marketing: those chocolate bars placed next to a cash register at your grocery store aren’t there just by random. But should legal products such as contracts and court documents use nudging too? Or do they nudge already?

Nudging just might be one of the misunderstood concepts and rarely used intentionally in the legal world. Years ago, when Henna wanted to attend a conference about nudging, her manager at that time thought it was a self help course about managing one’s own personal life that had nothing to do with law and didn’t let her attend the event. However, after Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein published their book Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness in 2008 nudging has gained public awareness and has also become a popular alternative to traditional regulation in various governments and administrations around the world, especially in angosaxon jurisdictions.

Despite the controversial reputation nudging may have, it is good to remember that our environment influences us anyway.  As our guest David reminds, “every day, all the time, everywhere you go, there’s nudging going on”. Nudging is not a legal concept, but as lawyers and legal designers still influence the decisions of their clients and peers, it is better to be aware of the power of nudge and learn to use it ethically and wisely.

David Tannenbaum is an assistant professor in the department of management at the University of Utah’s Eccles School of Business. His research focuses on decision making under uncertainty, and its applications to public policy. Link to David Tannenbaum’s website: https://davetannenbaum.github.io

3. Episode: DIY Legal Help with Erin Levine

Erin Levine

In this episode Henna and Nina talk about DIY Legal Help with Erin Levine, legal innovator and entrepreneur from California.

Erin shares the story behind her revolutionary online divorce platform Hello Divorce. The DIY platform helps people applying for divorce to navigate through the divorce process independently. Erin tells us who are the potential users for DIY legal help services and how technology has changed the way her team of lawyers work today. We also discuss what else should be changed in the legal industry by design. Why is it important to mitigate the negative image of legal problems, such as divorce? Do we also need a platform “Hello Bankruptcy”? And what is the one thing that almost all customers want from their legal services? Nina gets goosebumps by Erin’s inspiring mission to promote justice through tech, yet promises not to divorce her husband.

Erin Levine is a legal innovator, entrepreneur, and Certified Family Law Specialist. She is the CEO and Founder of Hello Divorce, an award winning online platform that helps self-represented folks navigate the divorce process on their own through a web platform, accessing legal help when they need additional help along the way.  As a young adult, she brought criminal and civil charges against a former gymnastics coach, and experienced the legal system as chaotic, confusing, and amplifying her trauma rather than bringing justice. She later became a divorce litigator. 

Despite her success as a law firm owner, she realized there must be a better way and pivoted into justice-technology. Erin works relentlessly to simplify family law, reduce trauma for those seeking relief from the court and help people get back on their feet. Her design centered and sustainable approach to the delivery of legal services has been recognized by the legal industry and beyond with recent accomplishments that include the American Bar Association‘s James I. Keane Memorial Award for Excellence in E-lawyering and Duke University School of Law’s Legal Tech Accelerator – Grand Prize. Erin’s current projects include raising her two daughters, Zoe and Mia, along with managing the national roll out of Hello Divorce’s products and services.

2. Episode: At the Intersection of Legal and Design Thinking with Michael Doherty

Michael Doherty

Should legal texts be written in the form of poems? Is legal design legal science? What happens when legal and design cultures collide? In the second episode of the podcast series Henna and Nina discuss with Michael Doherty about the relationship between law and design disciplines from philosophical, educational and cultural point of views.

In this episode we also find out that comprehensibility in law is not a new trend, but has been discussed through times. What will it take to make it mainstream? In this episode Henna is let loose and gets to ask funny questions about her law school nemesis, Legal Theory.

Michael Doherty is Professor of Law, and Associate Head of the Law School, at Lancaster University, UK. His main teaching and research areas have been constitutional law and human rights and he is author of Public Law, 3rd ed. (Routledge, 2021). His key interest in higher education has been teaching and learning in law, and he co-created the Connecting Legal Education online community in 2020. He has been the Director of Teaching and Learning at his former and current law schools for over 15 years. He was elected Chair of the Association of Law Teachers in 2004 and served on the ALT committee for 8 years.

Prof. Doherty’s recent publications include ’Comprehensibility as a rule of law requirement: the role of legal design in delivering access to law’ (2020) in 8(1) Journal of Open Access to Law; ’The Relationship between Legal and Design Cultures: Tension and Resolution’ in M Corrales, H Haapio, M Hagan and M Doherty (eds), Legal Design: Integrating Business, Design, & Legal Thinking with Technology (Edward Elgar, forthcoming 2021); ’Re-imagining a law degree: Using service design methods in curriculum design’ (with Tina McKee) in E Allbon & A Perry-Kessaris (ed), Design and Visualisation in Legal Education: Access to the Law (Routledge, forthcoming 2021).