This program contains 6.5 hours of Professionalism Content from LSO
This program contains 1.5 hour of EDI Professionalism Content from LSO

Founding Partner


Strategic Partners



As part of the wider Canadian Legal Innovation Forum - in association with the Canadian Bar Association and the University of Calgary Faculty of Law - ADB Insights is organizing a series of design thinking workshops across Canada. The Toronto workshop will be held November 19th.

The purpose of the workshops is to build a local and national network of innovators collaborating to solve challenges faced by the legal sector. Participants will learn and employ design thinking frameworks to address them. Participants will be a mix from law firms, in-house counsel, academia and vendors.

There are many objectives for the workshops. To provide a space where innovators can develop solutions to the common pain-points they are facing as legal practitioners. To share their innovation experiences (both successes and failures). And to encourage collaboration by learning and employing design thinking and other, related methodologies to address these challenges. Following the workshop, participants will be able to take away these learnings to apply directly in their roles.

Key Information

  • Workshop is in Toronto in March, 2020 (date TBC)

  • Facilitation partner is Keren Perla (Design Specialist) who is a highly experienced facilitator in design-thinking methodology.

  • 60 attendees maximum per workshop. Participants split between: law firms, in-house counsel, academics and legal sector service providers. All levels of career experience encouraged to join as well as non-lawyers.

  • Half-Day, afternoon timing: 6 hour session

  • CBA members are entitled to a 25% discount off of the registration fee. To access the registration code please contact:


The collaboration workshops will focus on challenges faced by the legal sector using design-thinking and other methodologies to address them. The three themes concentrate on common challenges by those in the legal sector. They are:

  • Improving the user experience. For lawyers, providing legal expertise is a given. The key area for lawyers to differentiate themselves is through service delivery. How can the customer journey (client, business) be re-imagined? Some example scenarios: new file/client intake, managing difficult client conversations and client management.

  • Talent – the recruitment, retention and purpose puzzle. Talent is the core asset of the legal sector. Yet, there are many dynamics at play when it comes to engaging, retaining and developing lawyers. How can the recruitment, retention and purpose puzzle be better mapped? Some example scenarios: developing a talent intake, recruitment and retention strategy; evolving and sustaining corporate/firm culture in the face of change.

  • Enhancing processes. Delivering legal services efficiently is a challenge. How can enhanced internal processes drive improved service delivery from private practice and in-house counsel? How can a law department shift from cost-centre to value-creator? How can proven process management techniques used by other sectors apply to private practice? Some example scenarios: re-designing legal service delivery to be more impactful (billing, contract management, NDAs).



  • Attendees briefed on the themes that will be covered in the workshops approximately 2 weeks in advance. They will be given reading materials outlining themes and design thinking methodologies for application during the workshop.

During the Workshop

  • 3 x presentations from in-house counsel, law firms and legal sector service providers on challenges they are facing in their day to day work providing real-world context. The challenges will be related to the defined themes of the workshop.

  • Facilitation. The facilitation partner – Keren Perla (Design Specialist) -  for the workshop will outline and review the key tenets of design thinking. She define the challenges for each group to tackle during the collaboration exercise which will be supported from three other facilitators from the legal sector with design thinking experience.

  • Collaboration Exercise. The attendees will be broken into working groups of 6-8 people. Each group will be a blend of practitioners from in-house, law firms and legal sector service providers at different points in their career. Each group will be assigned one of the 3 challenges and then will collaborate to apply the design thinking framework to them. Facilitators will circulate amongst the group to assist. Team leaders will be appointed for each group.

  • Presentations. Groups will then present the first iteration of their proposed solutions to the wider group. The focus will be on the process of collaboration, not necessarily outcomes - both success and failure will be actively encouraged.


  • Collaboration Teams will be encouraged to continue discuss their learnings after the workshops or other connections they make in the workshops. The groups will then convene either in person (quarterly) or via videoconference. Here, they will discuss their progress, failures and overall experiences in the application of their learnings.

  • Web-based content. A website will be created where visitors can connect, review relevant content and themes, upcoming meetings and other, related information. The site will be updated with content from the Canadian Legal Innovation Forum, the workshops, and other thought leadership on an ongoing basis. Content will be both written and interactive. A group will also be created on LinkedIn to share information and learnings.