LegalAIIA - 1st International Workshop on AI and Intelligent Assistance for Legal Professionals in the Digital Workplace

to be held on June 17, 2019, Montreal, Québec, Canada in conjunction with the
19th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Law (ICAIL 2019)

Over the past decade, increased use of machine learning and other artificial intelligence technologies has significantly increased legal professionals’ abilities to efficiently access, process, and analyze digital information. AI breakthroughs continue to improve everything from advanced search to information extraction and visualization to data summarization, classification, and review. At the same time, concerns over transparency and the potential limitations of fully automated approaches to problems in the legal space have led to an upsurge of interest in methods that incorporate human intelligence –- the so-called "human-in- the-loop" approach to AI. The debate over using AI as a replacement for humans, as opposed to an augmentation of human abilities, otherwise known as IA or Intelligent Assistance, is over half a century old, but currently the pendulum is swinging back toward the augmentation or IA perspective. However, not all human-AI collaborative effort is guaranteed to be fruitful. Research into the nature, degree, and efficiency of the human contribution to various applications is needed to ensure that the efforts and resources are deployed effectively.

This workshop will provide a platform for examining questions surrounding “AI as human augmentation” for legal tasks (a.k.a. Intelligent Assistance or IA), particularly those related to legal practitioners’ interaction with digital information, including e-discovery. The focus of the workshop will be on better understanding the interaction between human and AI capabilities. The primary audience for the workshop will include working attorneys, legal researchers, computer science researchers, and AI providers in the legal industry.

Open questions remain about if/when human interaction is necessary to produce more effective results, if/when the human or AI should take the initiative in the collaboration (i.e., whether IA or AI should dominate), and if/when an increased interpretability and explainability of AI models is necessary for acceptable and successful human-AI collaboration in the legal domain. The ability of systems to analyze and identify exploitable patterns of human interaction and assessment in tasks like EDD (Electronic Data Discovery, or technology-aided discovery) is a significant area of inquiry as well. Empirical comparisons between pure AI versus IA or human-augmented AI – favorable or unfavorable – in the form of user studies or simulations, are encouraged. Proposals on how best to evaluate various methods of human augmentation are also welcome, as are analyses of the ethical implications of adopting AI as replacement versus AI as augmentation in legal applications.

Participation is invited on all topics relevant to these research themes, including but not limited to:

* Comparative studies examining the effectiveness of AI-enabled systems, tools and approaches versus non-AI-supported versions of the same
* Evaluation studies of actual legal systems and practitioner tools which are enabled by AI functionality
* Comparative studies examining the relative merits of incorporating human input into AI- driven systems via intentional direction vs. passive feedback
* Evaluations of various modes of human-generated relevance feedback – e.g., simple labeling vs more granular feedback
* Novel interaction techniques for legal technology systems
* User studies relevant to legal professionals and tasks (ethnography studies)*
* Context-aware AI, including user-specifiable context
* Human-AI Collaboration (machine-directed and human-directed)
* Algorithmic Transparency and User Proprioception**
* An examination of the role of explainability or interpretability in AI-supported systems
* Human influence on the Technology Assisted Discovery & Review process

This workshop is an outgrowth of the popular and successful decade-long DESI (Discovery for Electronically Stored Information) series of workshops ( While we welcome contributions on AI and IA across the entire spectrum of legal informatics, we also welcome more traditional DESI-related submissions as well.

Important Dates:

* Submission Deadline: 26 April 2019
* Notification of Acceptance: 10 May 2019
* Camera-Ready Versions Due: 31 May 2019
* Workshop date: 17 June 2019

Workshop Organizers:

Jack G. Conrad, Thomson Reuters (Co-chair)
Jeremy Pickens, Catalyst Repository Systems (Co-chair)
Amanda Jones, H5
Hans Henseler, Magnet Forensics
Jason R. Baron, Drinker, Biddle & Reath

Program Committee:

Apoorv Agarwal, Text IQ
David Lewis, Brainspace
Douglas W. Oard, University of Maryland, College Park
Dan Rubins, Legal Robot
Fabrizio Sebastiani, Italian National Research Council
Suzan Verberne, Leiden University
Gineke Wiggers, Leiden University

Paper types:

In view of the novelty of this workshop focus, two primary types of papers are sought: Research and Ideation. Research papers should include some form of empirical evaluation, appropriate to the nature of the paper. Ideation papers are more similar to a Position paper in that experimental results are not required. However, while Ideation papers permit discussion of ideas that are not tested, they should be testable. An Ideation paper should contain concrete proposals on how the ideas would be tested and the significance or impact of doing so.

Submission guidelines:

Papers should be submitted in PDF format and be no longer than 8 pages. Review is not blind, so papers should contain author information. Papers may be submitted to the following email address:, with the subject line “RESEARCH” or “IDEATION”, based on the submitted paper type. Other questions may be directed to the co-organizer email addresses below. It is expected that at least one author of an accepted paper will attend the workshop.


Accepted papers will be published on the LegalAIIA website, potentially with the ICAIL proceedings as well.

Publication opportunities:

Papers accepted for presentation will be available online prior to the workshop. Selected papers will be proposed for publication in a special issue of the Artificial Intelligence and Law journal or as chapters in a book on AI and Intelligent Assistance for Legal Professionals in the Digital Workplace.

Workshop Website:


Jack G. Conrad, Thomson Reuters: jack.g.conrad [at] tr [dot] com
Jeremy Pickens, Catalyst Repository Systems: jpickens [at] catalystsecure [dot] com

* In the context of the workshop, an ethnographic study refers to a qualitative method where researchers immerse themselves in the environment or operational conditions they are studying.
** Proprioception refers to the perception or awareness of the position and movement of the body, in this case, in the context of a user’s interaction with a computer system.

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