What should legal education become?
Back in August, my preview of coming activities for the year included this sketch of my role as chair of a University of Pittsburgh School of Law task force on innovation in legal education. Figure out the future. That’s our charge.
Our little band has done a lot of reading and reviewing and listening and talking, and one of the things that we tasked ourselves with was independently coming up with our own respective visions of the future. If we were to remove a variety of real-world limitations, such as compliance with accreditation requirements, the need to get changes approved by our faculty colleagues, and the cost of putting things in place, what could, would, and should law school look like?
Since this is a blog that talks in part about innovation and innovation processes, I thought that readers might be interested in what I and I alone am responsible for so far as my vision of innovation in legal education. Call what follows “My Law School,” or “MadisonLaw,” version 1.0, meaning that I have undoubtedly missed things, mischaracterized others, and added in unnecessary stuff. Much of what follows owes its inspiration to colleagues near and far, both in space and in some cases in time; I will not cite to them or otherwise annotate this sketch, even though the provenance of many of these ideas will be reasonably clear to many. As a last preliminary note, it will quickly become clear that this is almost entirely infeasible as an actual working model of any existing law school. It is what I would build and what I would do, if I had all the time and the resources in the world. Give me $200 million (substantially less than all the resources in the world, but still a lot of money), and (as Jackie Gleason once said) away we go.Read More »Legal Education: One Vision of the Future