ABA Center for Innovation

The ABA Center for Innovation is creating more accessible, efficient, and effective legal services in the United States and around the globe. We improve legal services through innovation, education, and collaboration.

Who We Are

The ABA Center for Innovation is a place for collaborative and creative thinking about transforming the US justice system. We believe the intersection of law and technology affords the profession a tremendous opportunity to reshape both the delivery of, and access to, legal services for the 21st century.

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Online Dispute Resolution in the United States

Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) is the use of technology to settle disputes between parties. ODR was initially used in commercial settings. In recent years, however, it has been adopted by courts to assist in processing cases. The ABA Center for Innovation received a grant to survey the extent of Court-Annexed Online Dispute Resolution in the United States as it existed as of the end of 2019.

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Resolution 115 - Encouraging Regulatory Innovation

ADOPTED - Resolution 115 - Encouraging Regulatory Innovation

The ABA Center for Innovation, in partnership with the Standing Committee on the Delivery of Legal Services, Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Standing Committee on Professional Regulation, and the Standing Committee on Public Protection in the Provision of Legal Services proposed a resolution before the ABA House of Delegates to encourage regulatory innovation. Full text of the adopted resolution and information about media inquiries can be found at the webpage linked below.

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Legal Innovation Regulatory Survey

Legal Innovation Regulatory Survey

Currently, no one-stop resource collects how state regulatory frameworks vary or new approaches to the regulation of legal services. The ABA Center for Innovation has responded to the lack of available information by producing this resource for the legal community and the public. The new survey provides state-by-state information of known efforts to reform the regulation of legal service delivery while also providing access to relevant case law.

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New Publications

The Simple Guide to Legal Innovation by Lucy Endel Bassili

Lawyers need some basic information on what is happening in the legal industry around them. There is too much to digest and it can be overwhelming. The legal industry is changing and there are lessons to be learned from those who have lived it. The Simple Guide to Legal Innovation provides a guide to the changing legal ecosystem and practical tips on how to modernize the delivery of legal services.

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Center Initiatives

Programs and Projects

One of our goals is to encourage and accelerate projects and programs that improve the delivery of legal services.

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Sander Innovation in ADR Award

Sander Award

Named for long-time Harvard Law School professor Frank Sander, the Frank E.A. Sander Innovation in ADR Award was established to recognize innovative methods and extraordinary achievements in the field of Alternative Dispute Resolution. The award will be presented annually at the ABA Annual Meeting.

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Please Donate

The American Bar Association Center for Innovation catalyzes innovations through people, process and technology in order to improve the effectiveness, accessibility and affordability of legal information and services. The Center’s impactful initiatives depend to a significant degree on philanthropic support, so charitable giving is critical to the Center’s success.