"Lawyers, like the rest of humanity, face the threat of "disintermediation" (broadly, being cut out of some supply chain) by smart systems; and, as in other sectors, if they want to survive, their focus should be on re-intermediating — that is, on finding news ways of invaluably inserting themselves in supply chains. This will lead, I believe, to the emergence of what I call “legal hybrids”: individuals of multi-disciplinary background, whose training in law will have evolved and dovetail with a formal education in one or more other disciplines.
The formality is important. When most lawyers claim today that they are, say, project managers or counsellors, they are nothing of the sort. Too often they but dabble. They are dilettantes who have read an article or two and attended a few seminars or intense courses. We would not dare call someone a lawyer on the strength of similar schooling.
If lawyers want to re-invent themselves and carve out new multi-disciplinary roles that allow them to deliver new value, then their commitment to these neighbouring areas of expertise must be deep and our law schools should be gearing up accordingly. In this way, we will also formally be equipping lawyers of the future with the tools and knowledge to solve business problems and not just legal problems. "