Innovation, Law and Technology Course Descriptions

Global Professional Master of Laws in Innovation, Law and Technology (2018-19)

*Please note that not all courses will necessarily be available every year.

The Law of New Technologies and Artificial Intelligence - Prof. Ben AlarieProf. Anthony Niblett and Prof. Albert Yoon 

The aim of the course is to explore how exponential technological change and innovation will affect law and society in a variety of contexts — including medicine, law, education, finance, transportation, communication, the arts, and government — throughout the world in the coming decades. 

Intellectual Property and Strategy -  Alex Stack

This course provides a survey of intellectual property, a class of legally-created assets that are of increasing importance to businesses world-wide. Students will be introduced to the core forms of intellectual property and will learn about their importance for business and for governments. The course will explore how intellectual property laws can be either considered an asset or a hindrance for companies, especially those operating in the technology sector. Students will be exposed to the multitude of legal arrangements that govern intellectual property assets and how each of these options has profound implications for many strategic business decisions of which founders, makers, and executives in all industries need be aware.

Privacy and Data Governance - Prof. Lisa Austin 

Privacy Law exists at the interface of several areas of law and, like so many other fields, is impacted by emerging technologies.  This course will introduce participants to the evolving field of privacy law, including the roots of privacy law and its fundamental principles, its evolution into the 20th century, the legal framework for privacy protection, and cases and policy debates surrounding the challenges associated with new technologies.  

Course materials and discussions will explore the field from the perspectives of various stakeholders, including consumers, businesses and regulators.  Topics explored will include, but not be limited to: privacy and identity, privacy standards, cross-border issues, data collection, data governance, consumer privacy, cloud computing, social networking, online behavioural advertising, and more. Privacy has become a major issue for Internet users, technology companies, online businesses, researchers, and policy-makers around the world, as more and more personal information is collected, aggregated, shared, and used across a wide variety of contexts.  It is therefore impossible to explore and understand the legal implications of innovation and technology without addressing privacy. 

Cybersecurity and Data Protection in a Global Information Economy - Imran Ahmad

This course will provide students with exposure to the key legal and policy issues related to cybersecurity. It will discuss the obligations of both the government and the private sector with respect to protecting computer systems and networks, the national security and cross-border aspects of cybersecurity, and more. Participants will be introduced to the legislative and technological landscape in this dynamic area and provided with the opportunity to discuss cutting-edge issues at the intersection of law, technology, and policy.  Students will engage with the issues through a discussion of legislation, regulation and case law.  

The Legal Challenges of Digital Environments - Andrea L. Burke, Elisa K. KearneyGeoffrey RawleZain Rizvi, Gillian R. Stacey and Sarah Weingarten 

The application of digital technologies is transforming industries, commerce and global markets. Innovations such as autonomous vehicles and blockchain are rapidly evolving from niche technologies to powerful tools in mainstream business. The application of digital technologies in the economy has caused immense disruption. Digital technologies offer great benefits, but also risks. While enabling unprecedented access to information and value unlocking opportunities, the new digital environment has presented innumerable challenges for markets, consumers and the legal frameworks which aim to protect them.

The ability of existing legal frameworks to meet the challenges of the new digital environment is continuously being tested. This course will critically explore the limits and the potential for the law to respond to the rapid pace of technological change. Course materials and discussions will cover a range of digital technology trends and applications, including big data, the Internet of Things, autonomous vehicles, blockchain and cryptocurrencies and contract technologies and will probe into the key legal challenges raised by the application of digital technologies.

Cryptocurrencies, Cryptoventures and the Future of Exchange - Addison Cameron-Huff and Anthony Di Iorio 

Cryptocurrency is the most important financial development in the 21st century. This course explores new peer-to-peer methods of exchange, payment, and ownership transfer. Specific applications to finance, supply chains, healthcare, law, real estate, and many other topics will be analysed through intensive sessions. The course is co-taught by Anthony Di Iorio, one of the co-founders of Ethereum and CEO and Founder of Decentral, and Addison Cameron-Huff, an attorney specializing in blockchain and President of Decentral. Global technological developments will be viewed through the lens of Ontario law. Areas of law covered by this course include corporate/commercial, IP, anti-money laundering, gaming, privacy, etc.

Design Thinking - Chris Ferguson

Design thinking provides people with the tools to approach the problems they face and environments in which they work with a creative, innovation focussed lens, allowing for the discovery of unforeseen opportunities and solutions.  This course will provide students with an overview of design thinking, the opportunity to work through the design thinking process and equip them with several tools to help them understand design thinking as a problem solving approach.  The inclusion of a design thinking course is a very intentional curricular choice that recognizes the programmatic focus of the GPLLM in Innovation, Law and Technology on innovation and entrepreneurship.  

Financing Technological Innovation - Brooke JamisonSid PaquetteGeoffrey Rawle, Zain Rizvi and Gary Sangha

Over the last few decades, venture capital has become a financial engine for new technologies. Venture capital provides critical equity financing to emerging companies, allowing entrepreneurs to grow ideas into business and bring innovations to market.

This course looks at how venture capital funds (VCs) work and how venture capital can be leveraged to benefit entrepreneurs. It will aim to demystify the workings of VCs by providing an overview of their key characteristics, strategies and motivations. It will explore approaches to venture capital funding rounds and negotiations, providing students with a platform to negotiate critical deals. It will also look at the nuances of raising capital internationally, and will consider comparative systems for funding of emerging businesses. Students can expect to hear perspectives from VCs, entrepreneurs, lawyers and the broader investment community.

Legal Technology and Informatics - Prof. Daniel Martin Katz

The use of information technology in the delivery of legal services and the globalization of the legal industry is fundamentally transforming the nature and practice of law.  At the same time, buyers of legal services are becoming savvier about the time and cost efficiencies that technology can deliver.  As a result, clients expect their legal services providers to engage technology in their practices and are auditing legal providers’ IT systems and capabilities.  This course will explore how technology is currently used in legal practice and how its evolution will continue to shape the legal profession.  Students will be introduced to: the technology that currently exists and its application to legal processes; change makers who are disrupting the legal industry; and asked to grapple with the challenges and opportunities currently facing the legal system and the legal profession.