Baker McKenzie associate, Yoon Chae, has started work at an unusual location. Normally based in the Firm's Dallas office, beginning in December and for the months ahead, Yoon's 'desk' will be in the prestigious World Economic Forum's Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution—a groundbreaking collaboration in San Francisco, California.
The placement is a 'world first' for a law firm and reflects Baker McKenzie's longstanding and extensive commitment to the Forum and to innovation in the legal industry more widely.
Through the partnership, Yoon will be working on projects involving artificial intelligence and machine learning as part of a three-month placement at the Center. With a background in electrical engineering and a certificate in energy innovation and emerging technologies, Yoon makes an excellent candidate for the Firm’s first representative at the new Center.
Opened in March 2017, the Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution brings together leading businesses, dynamic start-ups, civil society, academia and international organizations to co-design the innovative governance protocols and policy frameworks needed to maximize the benefits of science and technology for society.
Innovation and collaboration
Erik Scheer, chair of Baker McKenzie’s Innovation Committee, said: "Collaboration is key to our Firm's approach to innovation and so we are thrilled at the partnership with the Forum's Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which allows us to have a lawyer in the midst of the collaboration.
"We're delighted to have Yoon represent the Firm. The opportunity for our people to work with the Forum in this way is indicative of our belief that innovation is about much more than tech — it's also about talent and contributing to society. This placement opportunity is the first of a series to come and is testament to our longstanding commitment to the Forum and the rich knowledge to be gained from working collaboratively."
Speaking about the announcement, Yoon added:
It is a true honor to be selected for the role. I am very much looking forward to working at the Center and being in San Francisco, the heart of innovation and technology.
It is anticipated that through immersion in the day-to-day activity and in-depth research at the Center, Yoon will develop an expertise in emerging technologies and their relevant policies, as well as learn ways to better leverage new technology for innovative developments for the Firm and its clients.
Earlier this year, Baker McKenzie formed an Innovation Committee to ensure a strategic approach to innovation in every aspect of the Firm's global operations, from changing client needs to digitization.