Ethics & Professional Responsibility

(Thanks to Persuasive Litigator) I have put up a new paper on SSRN titled, “Legal Professionals of the Future: Their Ethos, Role and Skills“. It is part of a new collection being edited by Professor Michele DeStefano and Dr Guenther Dobrauz-Saldapenna, New Suits: Appetite for Disruption in the Legal World, to be published by Stampfli Verlag this year. The abstract reads: The paper examines the nature of professionalism and knowledge that underlie the legal…
Years ago, 1983 to be precise, a young and precocious academic published his first book. Barristers’ Clerks: The Law’s Middlemen has had a varied and storied life. As it’s out of print I have let it be downloaded for free from my website but that’s out of action until I redesign it. So I have transferred the book to my SSRN page where you can download it. If you don’t want to do that, it’s…
We last left off after a review of the Grey Areas of Professional Licensing in Vermont and the Burden of Proof in Professional Licensing cases. In part three of this series, we will be reviewing who has the authority to “charge” unprofessional conduct. In Vermont, as previously discussed, we have four separate entities that regulate professional discipline. The Vermont Agency of Education regulates teachers.  The Vermont Board of Medical Practice (under the umbrella of…
Richard Susskind has recently published a short paper arguing people don’t want professionals, they want solutions and answers. The paper then criticises professions for being more concerned with themselves than the people they serve. All in all, there is little wrong with this except the hoped for outcome–an outcomes-based set of professionals–won’t happen. Susskind is first and foremost a lawyer and a technologist. He isn’t a sociologist which is why I forgive him his…
Yesterday I received a notice from the Vermont Secretary of State’s Office, Office of Professional Regulation (OPR), informing me (and presumably every other person who is registered as a public notary in Vermont) that there is a new sheriff in town involved in the oversight and regulation of notaries public. Here’s a copy of the notice. All notary registrations are now going to go through OPR and treated just like all the other professions regulated…
After receiving many kind comments on our paper, “Professions and Expertise: How Machine Learning and Blockchain Are Redesigning the Landscape of Professional Knowledge and Organisation”, I have substantially revised it and put the new version on SSRN. I want to thank in particular Professor Laurel Terry of the Dickinson Law School at Penn State University. I hadn’t realised how many convoluted sentences I’d written until she pointed them out and she came through with…
We last left off with a broad comparative analysis between the four different professional regulatory systems in Vermont.  Educators, attorneys, physicians and everyone else.  I don’t plan on spending too much time, if any, in this series discussing attorney discipline.  Namely because Bar Counsel Mike Kennedy is far more versed in this area and has already given a great overview of the Vermont attorney disciplinary system in his blog “Ethical Grounds.”  Since the licensing…
As recently reported by the Burlington Free Press, one of the Burlington High School guidance counselors was charged with six counts of unprofessional conduct.  The initial charges ranged from what I would characterize as employment or personnel issues that on their face do not appear to rise to the level of unprofessional conduct, to the very serious allegation of falsifying a student’s record.  The Vermont Agency of Education initially sought a 364 day suspension…
(thanks to supplychaintoday.com) My student, Lachlan Robb, and I have put a new paper on SSRN. The paper is “Professions and Expertise: How Machine Learning and Blockchain are Redesigning the Landscape of Professional Knowledge and Organisation“ The abstract reads Machine learning has entered the world of the professions with differential impacts. Engineering, architecture, and medicine are early and enthusiastic adopters. Other professions, especially law, are late and in some cases reluctant adopters.…
(thanks to giant bomb.com) I’m sure PwC, EY, KPMG, and Deloitte would like to be thought of the same way as these bands, but…dream on. Why are they there? A press release from Karl Chapman popped into my overstuffed mailbox saying Riverview Law has just been acquired by EY. Despite the hype of press releases, this is a significant move in the legal services market. At bottom it shows two things: NewLaw is coming…

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