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a movement to make the law
more accessible, more usable, and more engaging.
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Do you want to come up with new ideas for legal ventures? Want to bring creativity & innovation into law? Then you need process -- find it here.

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Do you learn law better when it doesn't come in blocks of text? Here is our collection of visualized law -- maps, flowcharts, diagrams, tables, and more!

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Want to make law more accessible to more people? Here's our collection of great ideas, projects & research to design access to justice.

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Our Latest Posts

Participatory-Agile design cycle plan

I have been thinking about better ways to integrate the quick-development cycle of the Agile Design Process, and the community-driven spirit of Participatory Design. Here is my initial plan for what such a process would entail. The goal would be to run several of these cycles, in order to try out several different concepts rapidly.


Center for Civic Design and usable elections

Thanks to Aaron Stienstra for linking me to the Center for Civic Design, an effort to bring good design to elections and ballots. They are a non-profit who take information design, usability, and plain language to the cause of making election materials easier to comprehend and ballots easier to use. The Center publishes Field Guides


Comic employment contracts for farm workers in South Africa

Hat tip to Helena Haapio for forwarding me this article out of South Africa about comic-book version of contracts that has been created and distributed by a fruit company, for a contract with its farm workers. A lawyer for the company, Clemengold, named Robert de Rooy created a booklet of visuals and narratives to present


Collaborative legal services with the Center of Out of Court Divorce

During a recent visit to the University of Denver, I was so impressed to hear about a project that has come out of IAALS (the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System). It’s user-centered, collaborative, and coordinated in-person services, specifically for people going through a divorce. It’s called the Center for Out of


Does law school make students less creative?

Here is a short set of notes that are slightly provocative, aimed at both law school leaders and faculty, and the students who are choosing whether and how to attend law school. The notes come from a discussion in my Intro to Legal Design course, in which visiting guests and the law students discussed the


Legal Research primer as a coloring book

CALI has published a coloring book authored by three librarians, Elizabeth Gotauco, Nicole Dyszlewski, and Raquel M. Ortiz, that gives an introductory primer on how to do legal research. Along with essential information, it also provides line drawings for the reader to color in. The PDF version of the book is free online, so you


How can we visualize and compare legal policies? Two models from ‘usable privacy policy’ work

One of the student fellows at Legal Design Lab has been encoding a whole range of similar legal policies, tagging up which sections of different institutions’ policy documents belong in the same category. This allows for a more comprehensive analysis of the policies, as well as comparisons across documents. The question is, how to take


Social innovation with law schools as a driver

The dean of Osgoode Law School in Toronto, Lorne Sossin, has an interesting new post out about the new roles of law schools in developing problem-solvers and social change. He sees the rise of the new labs, courses, and professional tracks in law schools that focus on innovation and technology as a promise for law


Sparking 2 kinds of ‘Originals’ in legal innovation

I’ve been reading Wharton professor Adam Grant’s recent book Originals, that documents how new ideas and products emerge out of staid industries and bureaucracies. There’s a central point that he makes which links straight back to design thinking: The systems we live in need questioning — they need people to ask “Why, Why, Why, Why?” They need


The Bots Are Coming! (to legal services…)

Last week, it was great to see a short article making the rounds about a new chat-bot legal service coded and launched by a Stanford undergrad student, Joshua Browder. It’s DoNotPay, a bot that asks the user questions and figures out if they can get out of parking tickets or compensated for another ‘service gone


What would an effective, useful Legal Health Checkup look like?

I have been in different working groups and conferences over the past year, all focused on access to justice innovation, and we keep coming back to one new product idea: the Legal Health Checkup. This seems to emerge out of the research finding (from Becky Sandefur primarily) that people don’t even realize they need to


Do Lawyers want bad visual design?

I attended a design talk where startup and tech companies’ designers were sharing notes about what they’ve learned about what kinds of visual and interaction design best connect with users. One of the designers mentioned that you have to sometimes throw out the “core principles of good design” for certain audiences. He was talking about


What would a good online legal help resource look like?

If we were to build a 2016 tool to help people, searching online for help with a life problem (that we know has a possible legal solution/redress), what would that look like? What are some of the key features and heuristics we can use to define what this next-generation type of tool should be? (Hint:


Lessons from Personal Finance Design for Legal Design

Last week I went to an evening talk at Intuit, hearing from a collection of designers, technologists, and strategists working to make personal finance more engaging for laypeople. The panel was moderated by Leslie Witt (Design director of Intuit Small Businesses.), and had 4 thoughtful speakers: Mike Tschudy (head of design,, Ben Knelman (CEO


Law schools as innovation hubs – the Global Legal Technology Lab

Today I had the pleasure of attending an exploratory meeting for a new initiative — the Global Legal Technology Lab. It’s a network of law schools, legal technology companies, and other organizations interested in pushing forward new innovations in the legal system — particularly around access to justice. It grew out of meetings at University


Hack for Justice event – legal design and the criminal justice system

In early May, the Legal Design Lab is co-hosting a one day design sprint, with the California Attorney General’s office. The AG is focused on making it easier for normal people to understand how the criminal justice system works, and also to use the power of data to help researchers, journalists, and the public better


White House Access to Justice forum

Last week I had the pleasure of attending the White House Forum on Increasing Access to Justice. It was a gathering of lawyers, judges, law clinic leaders, business-people, and politicians to talk about both the pressing needs for greater legal services (and innovations in how we pursue getting more legal services to more people), and


Interaction Designers on Making the Law Design-Friendly

Thanks to Kursat Ozenc for this link to a 15 minute video from designer Daniel Orbach, called Design, The Law, and You. Daniel Orbach – Design, the Law, and You from Interaction Design Association on Vimeo. It’s from an Interaction Design conference that happened in March in Finland. Here’s the abstract of the video: As