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The Future of Lawyering

Leveraging the proximity of two prominent global technology companies — Emerson on the University of Dayton campus and LexisNexis in nearby Miamisburg — law students are learning about data security and privacy, product liability and regulation, plus working in a real-world lab to develop new legal products and services.

"Working with Emerson, our students can experience and touch the technologies of the future before launching their careers. They are able to dive into the law and the 'Internet of things' right where these 'things' are being developed," School of Law Dean Andrew Strauss said.

The 'Internet of things' refers to the system of sensors, processors and wireless devices connected to the Internet, according to Strauss. By 2020, he expects there will be more than 200 billion connected sensor devices that will include wearables, phones, Internet-connected homes and autonomous cars that communicate with each other and humans.

"These devices provide a multitude of social and individual benefits, but they also raise legal issues," Strauss said. It's increasingly important our students are prepared to work in this area. It's great our students can walk a couple blocks to The Helix Innovation Center to gain this experience."

Minutes away from campus, students are working with LexisNexis lawyers to see what technology they can develop to help the legal community do their jobs better. Students are learning firsthand the challenges in developing and bringing new legal products to market. Strauss hopes the School of Law and LexisNexis can put students on paths to becoming legal entrepreneurs.

"Newly minted lawyers are facing 21st century practices that include virtual law firms and courtrooms as well as automated case management, document assembly and document review," Strauss said. "LexisNexis allows our students to dive into this area right where these technologies are being developed."

The collaborations with Emerson and LexisNexis are the newest steps in the School of Law's Technology Law School Initiative, which is building a reputation for being at the cutting edge of law and technology in both teaching and research.

In the School of Law's Program in Law and Technology, which offers concentrations with certificates in intellectual property and cyber law, students receive instruction from national experts. The School of Law also has LL.M. and M.S.L. programs in cyber and intellectual property law.

Students also can add a "tech credential" to their J.D. degree that shows employers they are adept in using the technologies law firms, courts and other legal organizations routinely use in today's practice.

Visit the related link to learn more about the School of Law's Technology Law School Initiative.


News and Communications Staff