Legal Technology, Law Practices, and Climate Change.


  • Dr Alan Ma, a lecturer at Birmingham City University’s School of Law
  • Damian Croker, LegalTech CEO, Arbitrator and Mediator


5:00pm - Introduction: The hosting organisations, the event, and the speakers, TBA
5:20pm - A metric for technology adoption in law firms, Dr Alan Ma
6:00pm - Legal tech, lawyers and the climate, Damian Croker
6:40pm - Questions and Answers
7:00pm - Close


Three contemporary issues that affect the future of law form the topic of our evening event. Two speakers will address these issues.

The first speaker is Dr Alan Ma on “Legal tech adoption in law firms”. It is undisputed that legal tech drives growth in law firms. However, making a management decision to adopt specific technology is never easy. Firstly, it is a commitment of vast financial resources, not only the capital expenditure of purchasing and setting up of the system but the associated costs of upgrading the staff’s skills and the maintenance of its operation. Secondly, the cornucopia of options available on the market creates confusion even for savvy decision-makers. The dire consequence of adopting an unsuitable product extends far beyond the initial expenditure. It is not uncommon to hear that firms’ profits per equity partner (PEP) are lowered by their unwanted technologies.

Dr Ma will explain the development of a model that can be used by law firms as a business tool to decide the legal tech adoption rate and scale, and the subsequent monitoring of the effectiveness of the business.

The second speaker is Damian Croker. His topic is “LegalTech, Lawyers and the Climate”.

Lawyers and their IT partners can play an important role in mitigating the impact of climate change. The talk will be a critical analysis of technology, its use by lawyers and the impact on climate change. Various technologies will be considered including ever-popular AI and blockchain plus more mundane technologies such as email. Datacentres also get a mention. Current climate-related initiatives in the world of IT and law will be outlined and discussed. This is a gloves-off talk about the realities of the IT and legal sector and climate change.

About the speakers

Dr Alan Ma is qualified in IT, Engineering and Law and is a lecturer in Law at Birmingham City University. He is a qualified solicitor in England and Wales, and Scotland (non-practising on the Roll of the Law Society of Scotland), a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, a Chartered Engineer and a full member of the British Computer Society, The Chartered Institute for IT. His working experience in engineering, computing technology, and legal practices spans more than 30 years. Before his academic appointment at Birmingham City University in England in 2019, Alan was Resident Partner of an English law firm’s branch office in Hong Kong as a registered foreign law firm. He practised English law in 3 jurisdictions. He was the training principal of 15 English qualified solicitors presently practising in England or in Hong Kong, and one of them is now a barrister and an international arbitrator practising in the City of London. When in Hong Kong, he scouted various start-up tech companies in Shenzhen as part of the firm’s growth plan.

Damian Croker

Accredited Civil and Commercial Mediator

Civil Mediation Council (CMC) Registered Mediator

Member – Society for Computers and Law Sustainability and ESG Committee

Member – Mediators Beyond Borders International (MBBI) Climate Change Project Team

Visiting Professor International Commercial Arbitration - Shanghai Lixin University

Chair- Campaign for Greener Arbitrations (CGA) Latin America Committee

Member – Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Professional Development Advisory Group

Past Branch Chair - Chartered Institute of Arbitrators

Signatory - Arbitration Green Pledge and the Mediators Green Pledge

International ADR practitioner with a focus on commercial arbitration and mediation in the technology sector and mediation of community disputes. Founder of two legal tech companies - Lexdech (IP Services Platform) and ODRPlat (Carbon Neutral Dispute Resolution Platform). Visiting Professor in International Arbitration at the Shanghai Lixin University. Chair Campaign for Greener Arbitrations (CGA) Latin America. Society for Computers and Law Sustainability and ESG Committee Member. Mediators Beyond Borders International (MBBI) Climate Change Project Team Member. Former Branch Chair Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. Past member of International Trademark Association’s (INTA) Internet Committee.

Regular speaker and writer on ADR, technology/IP, climate action and access to justice. Past presenter of the Creating Brand Value session on the UK IPO’s IP Masterclass course. Speaker on the Imperial College Intellectual Property MBA elective.

Editor of the Guide to Protecting Trademarks in European Dependent Territories. Contributor to IP protection articles for various media outlets including The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, CNN and CNBC. Cited in Chokepoints Global Private Regulation on the Internet by Natasha Tusikov.

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This event is brought to you by: BCS Birmingham branch

Contemporary issues that affect the future of law
Date and time
Tuesday 1 November, 5:00pm - 7:00pm
STEAMhouse, CST008 Room
Belmont Row
B4 7QR
This event is sold out