Ulster University has launched what is being billed as the UK’s first legal innovation centre, which aims to lead the advance of technology use in legal services and education. The project is backed by the university’s law school and school of computing and intelligent systems as well as global law firms Allen & Overy and Baker McKenzie.
Ulster University’s vice-chancellor, Professor Paddy Nixon, said that the centre, established in recognition of the influence of technology on the law, will operate at the nexus of technology and access to justice. The centre is also supported by Invest Northern Ireland. The centre will conduct research on technological innovations for industry clients, the public sector, and the academic community. It will also enable lawyers, law students, and those interested in law technology to delve deeper into the sector, how it is changing, and the effects of this change.
The centre will also showcase the latest in legal technology, initially demonstrating software from Clio, a practice management platform company, and Caselines, a courtroom presentation and legal bundles preparation company. Nixon said that the legal sector is “immensely important” to Northern Ireland’s economy, adding that several global law firms have in recent years established legal hubs in the jurisdiction. It is hoped that the new centre will make the region a more attractive destination for law firms.