eDiscovery Leaders Live: Daniel Linna of Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

George Socha
George Socha

eDiscovery Leaders Live: Daniel Linna of Northwestern Pritzker School of Law



Daniel Linna, Professor & Director of Law and Technology Initiatives at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, joined George Socha, Senior Vice President of Brand Awareness at Reveal-Brainspace, for ACEDS eDiscoveryLeadersLive sponsored by Reveal.

Daniel’s teachings and research focus on innovation and technology, including computational law, artificial intelligence, data analytics, leadership, operations, and innovation frameworks. He’s also an affiliated faculty member of CodeX — The Stanford Center for Legal Informatics.

He received his BA from the University of Michigan, received a second BA and an MA in public policy and administration from Michigan State University, and graduated magna cum laude, Order of the Coif from the University of Michigan Law School.

Daniel began his legal career with a one-year judicial clerkship for U.S. Court of Appeals Judge James L. Ryan. After his clerkship, he joined Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn, where he was elected equity partner in 2013.

Before law school, Daniel was an information technology manager, developer, and consultant.

Listen in as Daniel shares how innovation and technology adoption has transformed—and will continue to transform—the practice of law. He discussed his own role in this digital revolution, which includes current developments at Northwestern’s Innovation Lab and Law and Technology Initiative.

Daniel also gave his thoughts on how the relationship between lawyers and clients—and potential clients looking for representation—will evolve. Particularly, he explained that lawyers need to introduce more rigor into their methodology and make it a point to describe to clients exactly how the value of their services can be measured, or risk becoming irrelevant.

Key Highlights

  • Daniel explained how the future of law will include a more data-driven, quantitative, and science-driven approach, and why this bodes well for the industry.
  • One of Daniel’s initiatives is training the next generation to use technology and innovation to introduce more clarity and ease of access to resources in the legal field. He shared how he goes about this initiative at Northwestern.
  • Daniel talked about the different ways lawyers can inject more rigor into their work and why being proactive about this can help them stand out to potential clients.

Powerful Quotes by Daniel Linna

  • The client wants a solution to their problem. When we think about lean thinking or process improvement, we’re forced to really put ourselves in the client’s shoes and ask, “What are some of the things the client thinks about, and how can we measure the value we provide and the quality of the different things that we provide to the client?”
  • I think there’s all sorts of opportunities to continue to develop tools to help people better understand the law and how to handle different problems.
  • Measuring outcomes is a big problem across this whole space. We do so many things as lawyers that we don’t know what the result is from the activity. We measure activity; we have all these billable hours [...] but if we can tie that to outcomes, [...] we can create better technology tools to help all sorts of people.
  • If you’re not able to articulate to the client how they can measure the quality of what you do for them and the value that you provide to them, you’re not in a good spot, because you can bet that they’re trying to figure out how to assess that and they might think you don’t measure up to someone else. We need to get lawyers to be much more proactive about being able to describe to the client how they can measure the value [of their services].

Connect with Daniel

Daniel W. Linna Jr. on LinkedIn