Strategic Lawyering: Driving Value & Managing Risks in the Innovation Economy

In the "high risk high return" innovation-driven technology economy (the so-called "bio-nano-info" trilogy), risk exposure is accentuated and the returns on investment more uncertain. To deliver strategic value and to avert or mitigate strategic legal risks, lawyering cannot be just about quality legal analysis and tight document drafting. Businesses must understand strategic legal risk issues in order to deliver strategic value and to protect its assets, especially intellectual property (IP) rights like patents and copyrights.

Against the backdrop of the constantly shifting terrain of science, technology and globalization, businesses and their legal advisers not only need to understand the legal consequences of developments in science and technology but they must think strategically to blend visionary business strategy with legal positioning. They need to act proactively to protect their stakeholders' interests through effective strategic legal and business risk management framework, structures and processes within the larger strategic business context. This is the essence of strategic lawyering - the big picture positioning, understanding the macro legal risk landscape and developing strategic plans to avert if not to mitigate strategic legal and business risks. In the innovation-driven technology economy we are living today, strategic lawyering has now become an imperative.

I, Zaid Hamzah, provide training and technology solutions for strategic lawyering services to corporations, governments and organizations. We are NOT a law firm but we work with law firms/in-house counsels on legal/business issues. As an author of the Law & Strategy trilogy and university lecturer in Singapore, Malaysia & Thailand, I have been involved in the business of strategic lawyering for over a decade. Focusing on the ICT, e-Security and Biomedical industries, I specialize in strategic legal risk management, intellectual property value extraction, technology strategy development and innovation management with an Asian focus.