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Innovation: Here, There and Everywhere

Innovation abounds in the legal profession, it seems, if this week's coverage is any indication.

First off, Ron Friedmann at Strategic Legal Technology points us to yesterday's release by the College of Law Practice Management of the four winners of its InnovAction Awards 2007, honoring excellence and innovation in the management and delivery of legal services. And the envelope please:

As if that were not innovation enough, the Financial Times of London came out this week with its second-annual survey of Innovative Lawyers, covering "cutting-edge practice in the legal profession." This year's survey includes the first FT Law 50, ranking the top 50 most innovative European law firms. (Topping the list: Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance and Linklaters.)

There is a lot to read in the FT's coverage. But for those who prefer the CliffsNotes version, Bruce MacEwen offers his summary of the survey at Adam Smith, Esq. He writes:

"The sheer variety is what's most impressive to my eye.  Linklaters came up with a way of helping finance vaccination programs overseen by the World Health Organization and UNICEF, among others, under which $1 billion of bonds have been issued and another $3 billion are expected to be issued over the next few years. ... Clifford Chance took on climate change by attempting to do for carbon and emissions trading what Michael Milken and Drexel did for junk bonds:  Standardize the disclosure and documentation to make the market more liquid.  CC also claims to have invented the world's first convertible Islamic bond, consistent with Sharia law."

The FT sums it up even more succinctly: "Innovation and lawyers never used to be comfortable bedfellows, but there is growing evidence of radical change in the legal market."

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on July 12, 2007 at 05:50 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

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