In 2019-2020 academic year the Institute of Law at South Ural State University has introduced a new Master’s program Law (Law and Digital Technologies) taught in English which trains specialists with new skills and knowledge.
“This Master’s program is the result of cooperative efforts of the teaching staff of the Institute. In 2018 the Institute started interdisciplinary research project «Legaltech: Legal Regulation of Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Digital Economy and Creation of «Smart» Law for Smart Industry». While working on the project within the framework of law digitization the team realized how important it is to provide future lawyers with knowledge in this field”, shares Elizaveta Gromova, LLM Program Coordinator.
Nowadays the process of digitization spreading throughout the world makes the law adapt to new «digital» realities and modern legal education has to provide future lawyers with the necessary competence in rapidly changing law. The program «Law and Digital Technologies» is aimed at providing students with advanced knowledge and practical skills in the field of law and digital technologies from an international, comparative and interdisciplinary point of view. There is no comparable master’s program in Russia.
“In a context of intensive digitization our society needs lawyers who can focus on digital environment and adapt to new reality. It is the modern market need that motivated us to create new program. Students get information about traditional legal doctrine, the regulation of digital law in public and private law, and international and comparative law. These features make the program interesting both for recent law graduates, legal practitioners and graduates of other practice areas. The developing cooperation of the Law Institute with foreign universities and educational organizations allows our students to participate in international scientific and educational events, exchange programs and internships,” shares Elena Titova, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Head of the Theory of Government and Law, Constitutional and Administrative Law Department.
Distinctiveness of the New Master’s Program
A special feature of this program is that it is taught in English. The key disciplines of the program concern judicial and law-related questions that address the opportunities and risks associated with innovation and new technologies. They are:
- Current Problems of Legal Support for Digital Economics in Russia and Foreign States
- Relevant Issues in The Digitization of Criminal Court Proceedings
- Crimes Related Digital Information (Comparative Aspects)
- Digital Technologies in Civil and Arbitration Proceedings
- Contract Law in the Field of Information Technology
- Legal Regulation of Digital Financial Assets in Russia and Foreign States
- International Cooperation in Combating Transnational Organized Crime
Lectures are given by experts in different branches of law both from Russia and other countries (Great Britain, Malaysia, Poland, Slovenia). Leading professors of the Law Institute are involved in the program: Yuri Voronin, D.Sc., Aleksey Minbaleev, D.Sc., Kirill Tomashevskiy, D.Sc., Abd Hakim Abd Razak, professor from Xiamen University (Malaysia), Edward Juchnevicius, professor from University of Gdansk (Poland).
Law Institute partners in the program are University of Gdansk (Poland), Xi’An Jiaotong University (China), the University of Chester (UK), University of Maribor (Slovenia), the European Law Students' Association (Bologna, Italy), Masaryk University (Czech Republic), University of Belgrade (Serbia). Students may participate in internships and exchange program under agreements with the universities”, notices Elizaveta A. Gromova, LLM Program Coordinator.
There are plans to engage expert practitioners from leading companies such as Dentons, the Strategic Initiatives Agency and Skolkovo Innovation Center.
At the end of the course the graduates of the master’s program will acquire the necessary competencies to work as managers in international legal and other companies or public bodies: theoretical and practical knowledge in the field of legal support for digital economics and the digitization of state administration; law-making, law enforcement, expert advice, organization, management, scientific and scientific knowledge research and teaching. Graduates will also acquire knowledge and skills of lawyers who plan to work in the IT sphere, engage in legal support of innovative projects and ensure intellectual property rights in digital transformation.
The quality of work, and therefore, high professionalism are guaranteed through systematic and continuously regular training.
Prospects of Employment
Top managers of many companies are interested in engaging professionals capable of solving problems in digital world – this allows companies to step up to a whole new level.
“Graduates of our program will be able to take positions in international legal bodies, public authorities, courts, or any other companies whose activities are related to the judicial aspects of digital technology creation and application. The principal employers for graduates of the program may become Chelyabinsk Region Court of Arbitration, Chelyabinsk Region Court, courts of Chelyabinsk Region, as well as lawyers' associations such as Chelyabinsk Region Legal Association, state and local government bodies, international legal companies (Dentons, Skolkovo Innovation Center, Agency for Strategic Initiatives),” notes Elena Titova.
The experts of the universities of the partners gave their opinion on the program and the need for getting education in the field.
“I am certain that programs such as «Law and Digital Technology» will become a flagship of modern legal education, allowing students to get knowledge about digital law,” shares Manjeet Sahu, a judge from India.
“Modern legal education in the field modern technology is no longer a luxury, but a necessity for the world dealing with big data, artificial intelligence, blockchain technologies, the Internet of things, cybersecurity. The program «Law and Digital Technologies» allows to create a multi-disciplinary synergy which places a well-trained lawyer at the center of the system,” says Marius Cocou Mensa, a senior researcher from University of Maribor (Slovenia).
“Please think about your potential clients - they contact their friends on Facebook, pay with Paypal or Webmoney, store their files in the cloud. This list goes on and on. Ask yourself a question - Do you really need to study the law of new technologies?” shares Edward Juchnevicius, a professor from the University of Gdansk (Poland).
The most crucial competitive advantage of a young specialist is real work experience and interaction with the leading experts of a relevant sector. By taking part in the master’s program students immerse into the process and that provides them with chances of promising employment and dynamic careers.