There are new SCL Trustees and two of those retiring from the Board of Trustees have become SCL Fellows
The January AGM of the Society for Computers and Law saw changes in the Board of Trustees. Roger Bickerstaff and Clive Freedman retired from the Board and Neil Brown, Toby Crick and Cynthia O’Donoghue became SCL Trustees. Roger and Clive, having completed a term as trustees, were appointed as SCL Fellows.
The new trustees are all well known in tech law circles and each has a long-established relationship with SCL.
Neil Brown runs decoded:Legal, a law firm specialising in Internet, tech and telecoms law. He helps Internet, telecoms, technology and healthcare start-ups and businesses achieve their commercial goals, and navigate often complex regulatory environments. Alongside his practice, he sits on the Law Society’s Technology and Law Reference Group, and the Independent Digital Ethics Panel for Policing. He is a member of the Institute of Law and the Web at the University of Southampton, where he has a vice-chancellor's scholarship to research his doctoral thesis on the regulation of over the top communications services.
Neil sat on the media board for a number of years, helping to guide the direction of Computers & Law and the SCL website content, as well as writing the occasional article and book review, and he co-chaired the society's 2016 Tech Law Futures conference. Neil said ‘I’m delighted to be able to continue my long-standing relationship with the SCL. Initially, I will be supporting the roll-out of the SCL’s LLM, further increasing our links between the practitioner and academic communities, and I look forward to contributing to the numerous activities the SCL undertakes’.
Toby Crick is a Partner in the Commercial Technology group at Bristows LLP based in London. Toby's work focuses on software licensing, development and integration projects; outsourcing and telecommunications in a range of sectors including financial services, life sciences and central government. Toby spent many years working as part of the in-house legal teams of telecoms, outsourcing and system integration suppliers and has a particular interest in the practical application of new technology in organisations and creating balanced contracts to enable that to happen. Toby lectures at UCL and QMUL on agile software, open source software, tech procurement and outsourcing and is a member of the SCL's outsourcing committee.
Toby describes himself as ‘really honoured to have been invited to become an SCL Trustee’. He sees it as a key part of his job to share his knowledge and to gain expertise from others' experience of practising tech law and feels that SCL provides a unique forum for this to happen. He said:
‘since qualifying in the late 90s, at the start of the first dotcom boom, technological driven change and technology businesses have transformed society and the economy. I consider myself really lucky to have chosen to work as an IT lawyer during this time and to have been able to benefit from the knowledge transfer and networking opportunities afforded by the SCL. I look forward to working with my fellow Trustees and the wider membership to build on the great work the SCL has done over the past several decades and to embrace the next wave of technological and regulatory change that the tech world – and the IT law profession – now faces.’
Cynthia O’Donoghue leads Reed Smith LLP's International Information Technology, Privacy & Data Security practice and is a partner in the IP, Information & Innovation group in London. Cynthia specialises in technology, data, cyber and commercial law. She advises across a wide range of sectors on IT and business process outsourcing; application development and management; software and content licensing; apps and smart technology; e-commerce, including hosting and content management; cloud computing and systems integration, FinTech, mHealth and social media.
Cynthia was delighted to have been invited to join the SCL Trustees. The relationship between technology and the law has been both the focus of her career and something of a passion. Prior to becoming a solicitor, she ran a software company and has found that bringing that tech knowledge to law has proved to be a real asset. She has an interest in the strategic and policy aspects of law and has participated in workshops hosted by policy makers, academia, authorities and trade associations/industry organisations, such as the World Economic Forum and the UK Houses of Parliament Industry and Parliament Trust meeting.
Roger Bickerstaff and Clive Freedman became the 13th and 14th SCL Fellows. Both have completed long terms as SCL Trustees and have made important contributions to SCL’s development over those years.
As well as a long period as an SCL Trustee, Roger Bickerstaff was Chair of SCL until Mark O’Conor took over. He remains a member of the SCL Editorial Advisory Board and looks forward to continuing a strong SCL connection and encouraging colleagues to make full use of SCL’s resources and to lend their expertise to reinforce SCL’s educational function. Roger is a Partner at Bird & Bird, where he is a member of the International Tech & Comms Sector Steering Group and leads our Digital Technology Solutions, Internet Services and eCommerce industry initiative. He has over 20 years’ experience and is especially highly regarded in public procurement fields - he is an external lecturer on procurement law at Rome University and Nottingham University.
'Being involved with the SCL provides a much wider viewpoint on Techlaw issues
than the routine of day-to-day work. There are always new people, interesting
ideas, and opportunities to do something a little different. For me, being an
active part of the SCL rejuvenated my interest in Techlaw. It remains a key
part of my working life and has provided lots of lasting friendships'.
Barrister Clive Freedman has over 40 years’ experience, with a practice which covers information technology, banking, building and engineering, and commercial fraud. But it is his particular interest in IT law that drew him to SCL, where his technical expertise has been almost as valued as his legal insights. Clive is a CEDR Accredited Mediator and a Chartered Arbitrator, and is named as a leading junior in Information Technology in Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners directories.
‘The last 25 years have seen great changes in both the nature of the legal problems which lawyers have had to address and in our methods of working. The pace of change shows no sign of slowing down, and the SCL will I am sure continue to play an important role in providing a forum for discussion of the changes we face and the new legal problems which will arise. I look forward to continuing to attend the Society’s events. I have made many friends as a result of my membership, and am honoured to have been made a Fellow.’