Keynote: The Promises and Challenges of Technology in Libraries
In a world where libraries face increasing stressors, from budget cuts to climate change to vendor consolidation to growing user expectations, technology holds the promise of relief. Robots and digital platforms can help to make shared collections more easily accessed; digitized texts can ensure uninterrupted access to materials even when a fire or flood destroys a physical library; a universal library interface would allow users to identify materials relevant to their research regardless of the location of the owning library; and a robust consortium of controlled digital lending libraries could provide access to information to communities that otherwise could not afford it. However, each of these visions face corresponding challenges, whether legal, political, cultural, structural, or technical. This address will seek to explore a vision of how technology could transform libraries and outline some of the challenges that would need to be overcome to achieve that level of change.
Michelle M. Wu is the Associate Dean for Library Services and Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center. Over her 24 years in academic libraries, she has also fulfilled various roles within her law schools, including supervising IT, registrar, facilities management, and financial operations. She has served as chair of the AALS Committee on Libraries and Technology, the chair of ALL-SIS, vice-president of LLSDC and the editor of the CRIVSheet. She teaches, publishes, and speaks in the areas of copyright, intellectual property licensing, and information management.
Legal Technology Curriculum
Alex Zhang is currently the Assistant Dean for Legal Information Services and Professor of Practice at Washington and Lee University School of Law. Before joining Washington and Lee, Alex worked and taught Advanced Legal Research at both Stanford Law School and University of Michigan Law School.
Alex has served multiple leadership positions in many national and international organizations. Alex has been a board member of CAFLL since 2015. She is currently the vice chair/incoming chair of American Association of Law Libraries (“AALL”)’s Innovations in Technology Award Jury. She is also the vice president/president-elect of AALL’s Animal Law Caucus and the immediate past chair of AALL’s Foreign, Comparative, and International Law SIS. Alex’s publications appear in many scholarly and peer review journals and books including but not limited to Law Library Journal, International Journal of Legal Information, Chinese Journal of Comparative Law, Legal Information Management, and Legal Reference Services Quarterly. She has also presented at national and international conferences such as CAFLL, AALL and ASIL.
刘丽君 Joan Liu
Joan is currently a curator at Fudan University where she teaches Legal Information Retrial & Academic Writing and Fundamentals of Chinese Law in the Law School, and teaches and supervises graduate students in the LIS program in the Literature and Information Centre of the Library. Additionally, she serves as a legal counsel for the Institute of Humanities and Social Science Data affiliated with both the Library and the School of Big Data, overseeing related legal issues such as intellectual property and privacy, prior to the review of the University General Counsel’s Office.
Before joining Fudan University, she was a tenured associate curator and Head of Acquisitions & Serials at New York University School of Law Library. She received her LL.B. and LL.M. from East China University of Political Science and Law (ECUPL) and an M.L.S. from Rutgers University in New Jersey. Prior to becoming a law librarian in the United States in 1995, she taught law in ECUPL and other legal education institution in China. She has authored, co-edited, and translated a number of research works on various subjects, including legal research and information system, education for law librarianship, jurisprudence, and Chinese law. Joan is a licensed Chinese lawyer and an arbitrator.
Anne Mostad-Jensen is Head of Faculty Services at the University of North Dakota School of Law (“UND Law”). Prior to UND Law, Anne worked and taught at Concordia University School of Law. Anne teaches Advanced Legal Research and incorporates legal technology topics into the course. She is also working with colleagues at UND Law to develop a legal technology program.
Anne is active in multiple national and international organizations. Anne has been a member of CAFLL since 2014. She is currently the chair of both the American Association of Law Libraries (“AALL”)’s Legal Research & Sourcebook Committee and AALL’s Foreign, Comparative, and International Law SIS’s Asian Law Interest Group. Anne’s publications have appeared in multiple scholarly journals including the Law Library Journal, Boston College Law Review, AALL Spectrum, and Brill’s Foreign Law Guide. She has also presented or moderated panels at national conferences, such as CAFLL and AALL.
A.I. in Legal Research Classrooms: Guiding Students’ Informed Use of Legal Analytics Tools
This presentation is designed to explore the availability and integration of A.I.-infused legal analytics tools into research platforms commonly used in U.S. academic law school research curricula. Reviewing tools incorporated into such platforms as Lexis Advance, Westlaw Edge, Bloomberg Law and others, we will discuss how students can be guided in their use. Students need to comprehend the origins of these legal analytics tools and the underlying algorithms driving the search results. Examples of research assignments focused on litigation or transactional tasks will be used as illustrations of teaching moments for these tools.
Mary Ann Neary
Mary Ann Neary is associate law librarian for education and reference and a lecturer in law at Boston College Law School. She teaches semester-long courses in advanced legal research, tax research and bankruptcy research. Previously, she was counsel to the Massachusetts senate clerk and director of acquisitions and reference services at the State Library of Massachusetts. Ms. Neary holds a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts, an M.S. from Simmons College, and a J.D. from Suffolk University Law School. She is active in the American Association of Law Libraries and serves on the Board of Trustees of Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc. She is admitted to practice in Massachusetts.
Sherry Xin Chen
Sherry Xin Chen is a legal information librarian and lecturer in law at Boston College Law School. She teaches both U.S. and international legal research courses and is active in AALL’s Foreign, Comparative & International Law section, currently chairing one of its interest groups on electronic research and resources. She holds a B.A. from Shanghai International Studies University, China, and both a J.D. and a M.S. in Library Science from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is admitted to practice law in the State of New York.
Law Librarians Help People, AI can Help Law Librarians Help More People
“Artificial Intelligence” is a much over-promised phrase. In this short session, I will unpack AI a little bit and try to explain that it is a collection of technologies and approaches to solving real-world problems. The biggest promise of AI is that once you have captured “intelligence” in software, you can make that available to millions of people via the internet and adapt that “intelligence” to new situations. Law Librarians are already doing this when they collect and curate research guides or information packets for patrons, faculty, students or citizens. They can – and have – go the next step to automated guidance. I will demonstrate what automated guidance means and how Law Librarians can use this to scale it up to help millions of people. Finally, I will talk about some of the new responsibilities this imposes on us all.
John Mayer is the Executive Director of the Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction or CALI, a non-profit consortium of almost 200 US law schools. CALI publishes online tutorials, open access casebooks and develops software for legal education and access to justice. Mr. Mayer has a degree in Computer Science from Northwestern University and a Masters Degree in Computer Science from the Illinois Institute of Technology. Mr. Mayer has been active in legal education since 1987 and has been with CALI since 1994.
Ed Walters is the CEO and co-founder of Fastcase. Under Ed’s leadership, Fastcase has grown to one of the world’s largest legal publishers, currently serving more than 800,000 subscribers from around the world. Before founding Fastcase, Ed worked at Covington & Burling, in Washington D.C. and Brussels. He worked in the White House from 1991-1993, first in the Office of Media Affairs and then in the Office of Presidential Speechwriting.
Ed is a member of the Virginia State Bar, and the District of Columbia Bar, and he has been admitted to practice in the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and Fifth Circuit. He serves on the boards of Pro Bono Net, Friends of Telecom Without Borders, and Public.Resource.org. He is an adjunct professor at the Georgetown University Law Center, where he teaches The Law of Robots, a class about the frontiers of law and technology.
Dan has worked as a professional librarian in various roles including research, technology, cataloging and acquisitions. After earning a B.A. at the University of Houston, he earned his J.D. from Michigan State University, an M.L.I.S. from San Jose State University, and an M.A. in History from California State University, Fullerton. Dan has a rich background in law librarianship, and has worked in many different library settings, including the Montana Department of Natural Resources, Microsoft Corporation, the Santa Clara County Counsel, South Texas College of Law, and Western State College of Law.
Dan is actively involved with the American Association of Law Libraries, having served as an executive board member for both the Legal History & Rare Books and Computing Services Special Interest Sections. In recent years, he has been invited to speak at national forums on topics ranging from digital repositories to blockchain technology.
He currently teaches courses in Law Practice Technology, Researching American Legal History, and 1L Legal Research.