Dear friends of ELTA, before we all pass out from eggnog, let’s recap the year 2021 and have a glimpse into 2022.
As you know, ELTA’s goal is to provide a platform for those in Europe and beyond that want to make the practice of law more efficient and the access to legal services easier by helping lawyers to find and use appropriate technologies. We want this community of enthusiasts at the intersection of law and technologies to grow and flourish by providing information, training, participation in initiatives and collaboration among members.
What have we achieved in 2021?
Our network of ambassadors – conduits between local legal tech communities and ELTA – is what makes our association strong and efficient. Some of our ambassadors went one step further and established local ELTA chapters to provide a platform closer to their community. There are issues that are specific to local regulations, business practices and traditions. These issues often can be solved quicker and more effective within a local chapter, whereas European-wide issues remain a common effort of all ELTA members. In 2021, we added local chapters in Serbia, Turkey, and the Southeastern Europe region.
ELTA still has a couple of white spots on the European map. We continually work on finding the best people to become representatives of ELTA in their communities. This year we added or replaced ambassadors for the UK, Spain, the UAE, Belarus, Cyprus, and Latvia.
No single association can handle all the issues of legal tech in Europe alone. That is why ELTA has partnered up with selected associations that work in the legal industry and towards a common goal to make the industry ready for the 21st century, like the European Corporate Lawyers Association or Legal Protection International. In 2021, we entered into cooperation agreements with the European Law Students’ Association (ELSA), the Alianza Latinoamericana para la Innovación Legal (ALIL), the Associação Brasileira de Lawtechs e Legaltechs (AB2L), the Swedish Association for IT & Law, the Association of Certified E-Discovery Specialists, Women in Tech and Elontech.
In cooperation with Lexology, ELTA launched a bi-weekly newsletter with customized industry information for its members.
ELTA realized its ambitious goal to establish a directory of European legal tech solutions by partnering up with Theorem LTS. Theorem’s platform provides a unique way to discover, test and deploy legal tech solutions company-wide and have a perfect overview over your company’s technological stack. Members of the platform can see other member’s experience with solutions and read customer reviews (and contribute their own, of course). The platform is free for all ELTA members and law schools.
ELTA also started establishing an Expert Network by uniting domain experts inside and outside the ELTA community in 14 thematic areas, like AI, Contract Automation, Legal Industry Transformation, Digital Strategy and others. The Expert Network will become an essential base for further projects, like research, publishing, and training.
ELTA recently launched an initiative that potentially will change the speed of legal tech implementation in the legal industry. We want to combine efforts with legal tech educators, law schools, vendors, and employers in order to bring legal tech into legal education in a concerted effort. We believe that students can become agents of change when they have the necessary knowledge and experience with legal tech solutions when they are entering the workforce. ELTA will provide an intellectual and technological platform for these efforts.
Last, but not least – ELTA provided three days of industry insights and knowledge sharing at its annual conference ELTACon, an event our members can participate in for free.
What are we planning for 2022?
ELTA will continue its efforts to become Europe’s go-to authority for legal technology. We will further extend our network of ambassadors beyond Europe because legal tech happens all over the world and we can learn from each other. We will continue to inform and educate our members by launching a series of podcasts, continuing organizing interesting webinars, masterclasses, and conferences, and combining all educational efforts under the umbrella of an ELTA Academy.
ELTA had a good year 2021 thanks to the support of its community. There are challenging projects ahead, and the more brains and hands we have, the quicker we can achieve our goals. Now is a good time to join ELTA! 2022 will be an exciting journey, and we hope that we go on it together with you.
ELTA wishes you and your loved ones a peaceful festive season and a successful and healthy start into 2022!