Design in Legal Education

A visually rich, experience-led collection
exploring what design can do for legal education.

A visually rich, experience-led collection exploring what design can do for legal education.

In recent decades design has increasingly come to be understood as a resource to improve other fields of public, private and civil society practice. Today legal design – that is, the application of design-based methods to legal practice – is increasingly embedded in lawyering across the world.

This new publication brings together experts from multiple disciplines, professions and jurisdictions to reflect upon how designerly mindsets, processes and strategies can enhance teaching and learning across higher education, public legal information and legal practice. It will be of interest and use to those teaching and learning in any and all of those fields.

A conversation between the editors

Emily Allbon

Emily Allbon

Associate Professor of Law
City Law School
Amanda Perry-Kessaris

Amanda Perry-Kessaris

Professor of Law
Kent Law School

Explore the chapters

Design in legal publishing

by Emily Allbon, Amanda Perry-Kessaris

How are designerly ways influencing the culture, processes and outputs of the legal publishing industry; and what impact might this have on legal education? We interviewed Robin Chesterman, Global Head of Product and Matthew Terrell, Head of Marketing at vLexJustis and Karen Waldron, Director of Product and Matt Wardle, UX Director at LexisNexis to find out. Both publishers have a transnational focus, producing primarily legal materials, including case law series and legislation, and secondary sources, such as commentaries and textbooks, from multiple jurisdictions. While vLex Justis focus exclusively on digital formats, LexisNexis also produce hardcopy products, including managing two hundred years of print legacy. Furthermore, both publishers specialise in innovative interactive online data management and analysis tools with which consumers can make detailed and integrated investigations across a wide range of legal materials. We covered topics such as the rise of the visual in legal publishing, the influence of design processes and designing for diverse users in a global market.

Emily Allbon is an Associate Professor at the City Law School (City, University of London), moving into academia seven years ago from her previous career in legal librarianship. She is known for her work in developing the award-winning Lawbore resource – a website to support and engage those studying law, as well as for her work in the field of Legal Design. She was proud to launch TL;DR – the less textual legal gallery in late 2019 – which showcases ways of making law more accessible to all. Her work has been recognised in many ways, both by her previous profession (Wildy/BIALL Law Librarian of the Year 2012) and the academic law community (Best paper in Legal Education and Technology at BILETA 2012, Routledge/Association of Law Teachers (ALT) Teaching Law with Technology Prize 2013). In 2013 the Higher Education Academy named her one of 55 National Teaching Fellows – the UK’s most prestigious awards for excellence in higher education teaching and support for learning. Emily is a Senior Fellow of the HEA. Her academic background includes degrees in English Literature, Law, Information Science and Academic Practice. Her interests lie in legal education, legal research and legal information literacy, student engagement, legal design and visualisation, and the use of technology in teaching and learning.


Amanda Perry-Kessaris is Professor of Law at Kent Law School where she specialises in empirically grounded, theoretically informed, cross-disciplinary approaches to law; and to the economic life of law in particular. She has qualifications in law (LLB and LLM Southampton; PhD LSE), economics (PGCert Birkbeck), visual communication and graphic design (PGCert and MA London College of Communication) and is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She blogs at Approaching Law, tweets @aperrykessaris and publishes videos on Vimeo. One question running through Amanda’s current research is: What can design do for law? With the support of a Leverhulme Research Fellowship, she recently completed a short monograph on Doing Sociolegal Research in Design Mode (Routledge, 2021). A second question running through Amanda’s research is: How might we enhance our ability to understand and influence the actual and potential economic lives of law? She is currently working on a monograph on the theme of approaching econolegal futures in designerly ways, which is underpinned in part by an empirical study of the roles of law in island-wide economic life on the divided island of Cyprus that was supported by a Socio-Legal Studies Association small grant.

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