Digital Transformation of Legal Services: From Continuous Improvement to Disruption

For years, the legal industry has resisted technological disruption, but digital innovation and its gains can no longer be ignored. Gain the skills to drive innovation, use data, and implement technology at your firm.


6 weeks, excluding


6–8 hours per week,
entirely online

Learning Format

Weekly modules,
flexible learning

This Course Is for You if You Want To:


  • Gain insight into emerging technological trends within the legal industry as a legal-services professional or lawyer working with a firm

  • Prepare for current and future industry changes with the skills to innovate your firm and leverage technology for greater efficiencies

  • Upskill as a consultant or change-management specialist who assists legal firms in achieving digital transformation

You’ll Walk Away With:


A holistic understanding of how the legal industry is evolving, and how you can leverage the technological forces that are driving this change.


The skills to foster an ecosystem for innovation, using specific frameworks, project management and process improvement principles.


Functional knowledge of how data-driven decision-making and AI can improve legal-services delivery.


A business case for driving innovation and the implementation of data-driven decisions, AI, and technology to improve legal-services delivery at your firm.

Course Curriculum

Over the duration of this online short course, you'll work through the following modules:

Module 1
The Evolving Legal Industry

Learn about the forces driving change in the legal industry, and the disciplines and tools being used to deliver legal services in the 21st century.

Module 2
AI and Other Technology in Legal Services

Recognize the technologies driving change in law firms and legal departments today, including rules- and data-driven artificial intelligence.

Module 3
Creating an Ecosystem for Innovation: Processes and People

Learn about the roles that process improvement, project management, and operations play in successful legal-services delivery innovation.

Module 4
Data-Driven Law: Data Analytics and Quantitative Prediction

Learn about the ways in which data analytics can be used to improve legal-services delivery.

Module 5
Developing and Evaluating Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence

Learn about the opportunities to use data and artificial intelligence to automate and augment legal-services delivery.

Module 6
Creating a Business Case

Make the case for innovation, data analytics, artificial intelligence, and technology in legal-services delivery.


Please note that module titles and their contents are subject to change during course development.

Academic Director

Daniel W. Linna Jr.

Senior Lecturer, Director of Law and Technology Initiatives

Linna’s teaching and research focuses on innovation and technology, including computational law, artificial intelligence, data analytics, leadership, operations, and innovation frameworks. In addition to his appointments at Northwestern Pritzker Law, Linna holds appointments at the Northwestern McCormick School of Engineering as a senior lecturer and the director of law and technology initiatives. He is also an affiliated faculty member at CodeX — The Stanford Center for Legal Informatics. Linna began his legal career within the U.S. Court of Appeals, after which he became a litigator. Before law, Linna worked as an information technology manager, developer, and consultant. He has taught at multiple global universities as a visiting professor, and holds two Bachelor of Arts degrees and a master’s in public policy and administration.

Guest Experts


Mary O’Carroll
Director of Legal Operations, Google LLC
Irina Matveeva
Chief of Data Science and AI, Reveal
Liam Brown
Founder, Chairman, and CEO, Elevate Services
Jason Barnwell
Assistant General Counsel, Microsoft
Kingsley Martin
President and CEO, KMStandards
Ralph Baxter
Chairman and CEO, Orrick
James Lee
CEO and Co-founder, LegalMation
Steve Harmon
General Counsel and Secretary, Elevate Services
James Yoon
Partner, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
Maura Grossman
Research Professor, University of Waterloo
Catherine Krow
CEO, Digitory Legal
Jeroen Plink
CEO, Clifford Chance Applied Solutions
Paul Lippe
CEO, xMentium
Steve Poor
Chair Emeritus, Seyfarth Shaw
Jeff Carr
Consultant, Former GC
Nicole Morris
Professor, Emory University
Nick Long
Senior Director of Legal Operations, Reed Smith LLP
Kunoor Chopra
Vice President Legal Services, Elevate Services

An Online Education That Sets You Apart

This Northwestern online short course is delivered in collaboration with online education provider GetSmarter. Join a growing community of global professionals, and benefit from the opportunity to:


Gain verifiable and relevant competencies and earn invaluable recognition from an international selection of universities, entirely online and in your own time.


Enjoy a personalized, people-mediated online learning experience created to make you feel supported at every step.


Experience a flexible but structured approach to online education as you plan your learning around your life to meet weekly milestones.

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