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Paving The Way For New Innovation: A Moment With Ben Allgrove

Meet Ben Allgrove, a key player within legal innovation! 

As a partner in Baker McKenzie's IP, Data, and Technology team in London, he's not just shaping the future – he's propelling it forward. Ben doubles as Baker McKenzie's Chief Innovation Officer, spearheading the Reinvent innovation arm and BakerML, revolutionising the legal landscape with machine learning.

With a background in academia exploring AI's legal personality, Ben brings a unique perspective to the table. Recognized as a "Change-Maker" in the Financial Times European Legal Innovation Awards 2021, he's not just riding the wave of change – he's making it happen.

Ben will be joining FLUK’s Private Practice Day on the ‘Return to Earth: The Real World Implementation of AI Tech’ Panel. Until then, enjoy his insights!

1- With Future Lawyer UK coming up, which aspects of the event are you most excited about? Are there specific sessions, discussions, or networking opportunities that you are looking forward to participating in or learning from, and from your perspective, why do you believe conferences focused on legal innovation, like this one, are crucial for the advancement of the industry?

As ever, connecting with peers and sharing experiences is the best thing about these events. Innovation in our industry is tough – it is energising to share experiences from the trenches.


2 - Looking ahead, what do you envision as the future of legal innovation? Are there emerging technologies or cultural shifts that you believe will have a profound impact on the legal industry?

While an advocate of innovation, I am known for being a sceptic about the hype we see in the market and the narrative run by some. There is no doubt though that LLMs (and allied / adjacent techniques) offer a real potential to change the way that legal services are delivered. Notwithstanding some of the challenges that are still to be solved, I do think they offer huge potential.


3 - How can innovation leaders encourage collaboration with professionals from other fields, such as technology, design, or business, to foster a more holistic approach to legal transformation?

Collaboration across skill sets is key to successful change. But the most important factor, by far, is leadership and intent from core business leadership. This is especially so in the law firm context – without buy in and advocacy from the top, nothing truly innovative will happen.


4 -  What metrics or indicators do you find most valuable in assessing the success and effectiveness of newly implemented technology within legal organisations?

Entirely dependent on the technology in question!


5 - How do you suggest law firms can address and overcome resistance to innovation, both at an individual and organisational level?

There is no one answer to this. At the end of the day though, you need to show the business case and be clear on your investment time horizon. Without clarity and alignment on those, you will always be pushing up hill.


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