Baker McKenzie has launched the first hackathon event to be organised by an international law firm, in partnership with 42 and the innovation studio Schoolab. This event, which will take place on February 9 and 10 in Paris, is a competition involving multidisciplinary teams whose goal will be to develop prototypes in record time.

This initiative, which is often very popular with startups and has also been taken by some big companies such as AXA, IBM or the SNCF, is part of the firm’s innovation program which aims to rethink the way in which Baker McKenzie responds to its clients’ challenges.

42 is the first entirely free computer programming school in France. Its teaching is based on the principle of peer-to-peer learning and a participatory approach which allows the students to free up all their creativity thanks to project-based learning and work in teams. The school was founded by Florian Bucher, Xavier Niel, Nicolas Sadirac and Kwame Yamgnane in 2013 when the digital industry was critically short of computer developers in France. Its ambition is to train the best digital talent of tomorrow in large numbers.   

Schoolab is a 1800m2 innovation studio which houses students, startups and large companies. Schoolab sets up innovative education and acceleration programmes which enable multidisciplinary teams to design innovations for companies or show their own startup projects in France or abroad. Since 2005, the Schoolab teams have contributed to the development of more than 330 projects and startups. They form a community of more than 2500 entrepreneurs.

During these two days of intensive hackathon, lawyers and empoyees will get together, in collaboration with students from the school 42 and various law, business, engineering and design schools (Assas, ESSEC, HEC, Centrale Supélec, Strate école de design) to design the innovative projects which will shape tommorow’s law firm. The objective of the hackathon is to encourage the development of real projects for its clients.

Not only is this event a first for the firm, it also offers partners and associates alike the chance to break out of their usual working environment by trying out new practices. 

Commenting on the event, Arnaud Cabanes, Managing Partner of the Paris office said: “This hackathon is a golden opportunity to work with talented individuals with differing profiles and an original experience for our partners and associates to participate in this collective intelligence.  I am convinced that this event will enable us to respond to our clients’ challenges even better and through this even accelerate our own growth”.  

Thanks to this initiative, Baker McKenzie will take a major step forward in its innovation program, confirming its position at the cutting edge of technological progress.  
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