LLM Programme

The taught modules offered on the LLM programme vary from year to year. Please check the full list of taught modules list for details of modules running in specific academic years. We make every effort to ensure that every module will be offered, but modules are subject to change and cancellation. You are therefore advised to check this site regularly for further updates throughout the year preceding entry to the LLM programme.

Credit value: 30 credits (12 ECTS)
Module Convenor: Prof Richard Moorhead Other Teachers: Prof Richard Susskind
Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 20 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students, other UCL Masters students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core module for specialism: International Commercial Law, Litigation and Dispute Resolution
Practice Assessment: Written work, group and tutor feedback on written work and class presentation, discussion in class
Assessment method for Masters students: 1x 3,000 word coursework essay (50%), Portfolio of 3 x 1,000 word pieces (50%)
Module Overview

Module summary

The premise of this course is that you cannot fully understand the justice system without understanding how legal services are delivered within it. Global, commercial and political pressures are reshaping legal services. Innovation is challenging received wisdoms about the delivery of law and the professional status of lawyers. This course will examine the provision of legal services from the perspectives of theory, commerce and innovation. It will challenge students to evaluate lawyers, legal service reform and legal service delivery against normative frameworks: are legal services of appropriate quality; do they deliver access to justice; are they ethical?

The course will be led by Richard Moorhead and with contributions from Richard Susskind, the world renowned expert on law and information technology. We expect to involve innovators from the legal professions and the legal services industry in some classes.

Module syllabus

The course will cover:

1. Theories of Professionalism: commercial and regulatory perspectives
2. The regulation of professional monopolies
3. Theories of the firm – is big law under pressure?
4. The behavioural impact of fees – can the profession put its clients first?
5. Innovations in funding: ethics and public policy
6. Quality, competition and professionalism
7. International dynamics: globalisation, competition and regulation
8. Legal creativity by lawyers and the public interest tensions in creative lawyering
9. Theories of Innovation
10. How England and Wales have stimulated innovation
11. The potentialities of technology
12. Innovation through automation
13. Big data and the world of law
14. Commoditisation, Professionalism and AI

The outline class list (subject to change) is:

1. Innovation, Professions and legal services: an introduction
2. What are lawyers for?
3. Regulatory Change: the Origins and Implications - Legal Services Act 2007
4. How are legal service regulated: the role of ‘monopolies’
5. An innovation dilemma: are lawyers better than non-lawyers?
6. Dominance beyond monopoly: the growth and significance of big firms
7. Economic perspectives on lawyer behavior
8. Is Innovation Inevitable? What might it look like?
9. Alternative Business Structures
10. A public interest dilemma about innovation: are lawyers more ethical?
11. Disaggregation and redesign of firms
12. Innovation and access to Justice
13. Web based and Free Delivery of Legal Servcces
14. Unbundling of legal services
15. Crowd Sourcing
16. E-Discovery
17. Courts and technology
18. Big Data
19. Legal Prediction and AI
20. Innovation and Professional Ethics

Recommended materials

There is no set text for this module

Preliminary reading

Richard Susskind (2009) The End of Lawyers?: Rethinking the Nature of Legal Services (Oxford: OUP)

Other information: n/a
Prizes for this module: There are currently no prizes available for this module.


The application process for the 2014-15 academic session, for entry in September 2014, is now open.

Please refer to the How to apply section for information on the application process.