On Friday, January 22nd 2021, Counsel General and Minister for European Transition, Jeremy Miles MS, delivered the keynote speech at the inauguration of the Legal Innovation Lab Wales, a European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) funded initiative housed with the Hillary Rodham Clinton School of Law at Swansea University, which aims to transform the delivery of legal services in Wales and beyond.
The online event, titled ‘The Future of Law, Together’, attracted more than 100 participants, and brought together practitioners, academics and policy-makers to discuss a range of priority challenges facing the legal sector in Wales, including access to justice, threats in cyberspace, and the transformative opportunities offered by LegalTech.
The Counsel General highlighted the vital importance of legal innovation and new technologies for the development of a dynamic, inclusive and resilient legal sector in Wales. He emphasised that investing in digital technologies is a key priority for Welsh Government, to support the Welsh legal sector in exploiting the benefits of the knowledge economy, leading the technological transformation of legal services, while helping local communities and businesses recover from the pandemic. He said:
“The Thomas Commission challenged us to strengthen the legal sector in Wales and we can achieve that by helping more people to access and understand the law here.
“The Legal Innovation Lab, the first of its kind in Wales, is helping us to discover the potential of emerging technologies such as machine reading techniques and artificial intelligence, which can enable Welsh Government, legal professionals, professional bodies and academia in Wales to develop and promote the true capabilities of the legal sector.
“I’m delighted that Wales is once again leading the way in this ground-breaking research. EU funds are continuing to play a vital part in modernising our economy, increasing productivity, and developing employment and business opportunities. I am excited to see how far LegalTech can help promote access to justice for the citizens of Wales and develop opportunities to harness the power of digital and data to maximise public good.”
Legal Innovation Lab Wales, which is funded by the ERDF through the Welsh Government and Swansea University, has been actively engaged in responding to the challenges facing both the legal sector and technology though innovation, research and education.
Stefano Barazza, Academic Lead of Legal Innovation Lab Wales, said:
“The COVID-19 crisis has illuminated and exacerbated some of the challenges facing the legal sector and society, highlighting the need for collaborative and innovative ways of working.
The Lab was conceived as a state-of-the-art environment to bring people together, to foster collaborative ways of working, and to support the growth of a vibrant LegalTech community and economy in Wales.
We remain committed to providing an open and inclusive space for collaboration, developing innovative legal technologies and supporting the sector in embracing LegalTech. This inauguration was the first in a series of online events to support the legal community and the LegalTech agenda in Wales.”
A recording of the inaugural lecture can be access via http://bit.ly/LILWlecture.
For further information on the work being carried out at Legal Innovation Lab Wales, or for opportunities to collaborate, please contact email@example.com.