KWM hosts #breakinglaw hackathon

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Multidisciplinary teams of students from University of Technology Sydney will work with King & Wood Mallesons lawyers this Friday to Sunday to code solutions for real-life legal problems in the 2017 #breakinglaw Hackathon.

The three-day event, the product of a collaboration between KWM and UTS, will see the teams formulating and pitching ideas that solve complex legal problems to a panel of judges, for a chance to win cash prizes totalling $15,000 for the top three teams.

“The Hackathon is not just about ideation, it is a practical opportunity for both students and lawyers to build on their innovation skills through collaboration and problem solving,” said Michelle Mahoney, KWM executive director of innovation.

She said that the event will see the teams tackle problems in areas such as remote working, online personal data, drones, and regulatory compliance.

Professor Lesley Hitchens, UTS law dean, said that the event trains students to think of various ways to approach and solve problems related to the legal field.

“Being able to think laterally about a range of problems is an essential requirement for lawyers of the future,” she said. “The #breakinglaw Hackathon is another way we are preparing students to take up the opportunities offered by the changing nature of the legal profession.”

Hackathons are becoming a regular event in Australia’s legal industry. In February 2016, Gilbert+Tobin partnered with Westpac and LegalVision to host a hackathon. Last August, KWM hosted a hackathon with the University of Melbourne. The Queensland University of Technology Starters and The Legal Forecast not-for-profit also hosted a hackathon the same month. Last October, Lander & Rogers also hosted a similar event.

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