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Law students secure innovation challenge placement with DWF

26 June 2019
Three final year law students from the University of Manchester have secured a two-week design sprint placement with the R&D arm of global legal business DWF. 

DWF Ventures set a competition during a guest lecture to the Law School on 'Creativity in the Law', as part of DWF's role within the Manchester Law and Technology Initiative (LaTI), an ambitious project to see how the growth of technology is impacting the legal sector.

DWF challenged the third year law students to create a 90-second film application as to why creativity is so important in legal services. Three winners - Mandeep Hayer, Cian Hickey and Wunmi Akanji – were selected by DWF Ventures to spend two weeks working at DWF's Manchester headquarters to explore, analyse and propose solutions to a legal operations problem for a global sports client. 

The 'two-week design sprint' began with an initial scoping session to fact-find and fully understand the legal operations problem brief provided by the client. Following this, the students worked with the DWF Ventures team to explore design thinking concepts, reflect on ideas and come up with practical solutions to the problem. Finally, the prototype solution was delivered back to the client.

Jonathan Patterson, managing director of DWF Ventures said: "Innovation is changing the way legal services are delivered, meaning the related roles and skills need to adapt too. Nowadays, legal services providers need engineers and data scientists as much as they do lawyers and so this challenge is about introducing design-thinking concepts to law students who are interested in developing their skills in legal innovation and technology.

"It's the first time we've undertaken a project like this with the University and it is a successful example of how the Manchester Law and Technology Initiative is working together to introduce relevant innovation and technology skills to the Law School curriculum and shape students experiences."

DWF Ventures is part of DWF's Connected Services division, a group of standalone businesses offering complementary products or services to the traditional legal services offered by DWF’s other three divisions and consists of a range of professional, business or consulting services, a number of which include or are enabled by technology products and solutions.

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