The 9th Annual Information Governance and eDiscovery Summit takes place at the Marriott Hotel in Grosvenor Square, London on 13 to 15 May. I have been attending this event since its foundation – it is the biggest in the UK discovery calendar and one which always brings a good mixture of topical, practical and interesting sessions.
You can download the Agenda here for the Pre-Conference Workshops, or see the summaries of Day 1 and Day 2. The 13 May workshops, include one on Managing cross-border eDiscovery projects led by Drew Macaulay of Consilio. There was not much appetite for this topic in the UK a couple of years ago compared with the all-consuming (and wholly understandable) concern about it in the US. That has changed, partly because of the NSA/Snowden revelations and the reaction to it in formal circles in the EU, and partly because we all have an enhanced understanding of the issues at a personal level. Drew Macaulay is good on this subject, largely as result of having been involved in many cross-border collections.
The Day One Agenda opens with a Keynote panel on regulatory enforcement and expectations. The undoubted star of last year’s regulatory panel was Allison Stanton, Director of eDiscovery, FOIA and Records at the US DOJ, and she is opening the show this year.
Information governance gets an early showing with a panel on Developing an effective and actionable programme given by Richard Kessler and Jamie Brown of UBS AG. Jamie Brown was on my cross-border panel at the recent ASU–Arkfeld event in Phoenix and will certainly fulfil the “practical” obligation implied by the title.
Craig Earnshaw of FTI Consulting leads a panel called It’s not just about email any more with Matthew Ward of Barclays Investment Bank and Paul De Gruchy of RBS. As overall volumes go up, email declines as a relative to other sources like chat rooms, instant messaging and audio. Whilst this is most critical in financial services, it applies to every discovery exercise.
The trenchant Tom Spencer, Senior Counsel, Product Litigation at GlaxoSmithKline will talk about managing risk in the context of recent enforcement activities.
The fallout from Mitchell, and the focus on early stages of litigation, are covered in a panel which I am moderating called From Inception to CMC: proportionality and finding what really matters. My panel consists of Major Baisden of IRIS Data Services, together with Vince Neicho of Allen & Overy and Matthew Davis of Hogan Lovells, who know as much as there is to know about the practical implications of eDisclosure in the post-Jackson, post-Mitchell era.
The Day 2 Agenda opens with Professor Richard Susskind whose keynote talk is called Looking Back, Looking Forward: how technology has completely redefined in-house legal process. Redefining it is one thing; having it accepted and rolled out in practice is usually something which follows a few years after Susskind has predicted it, at least for those who are still around the benefit.
I am moderating the judicial panel which, as always when I get the chance to influence programs, talks about Best Practices in other jurisdictions. As so often, I am extremely fortunate in my panel members – Chief US Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Laporte of the US District Court, Northern District of California, the Honourable Mr Justice Frank Clark of the Supreme Court of Ireland and former Senior Master Steven Whitaker will cover judicial expectations which transcend jurisdictional differences.
We have Bob Lewis of Barclays and Wayne Micklethwaite of Vodafone talking under the title Making discovery a repeatable business process – Groundhog Day is fine in movies, but it is an expensive way to meet urgent eDiscovery demands. Drew Macaulay of Consilio talks about effective cost control in litigation and regulatory investigations whilst barrister Damian Murphy of Indicium Chambers emphasises the litigation value of eDisclosure.
Tom Spencer closes the show with a session called Managing eDiscovery Costs: The Jackson Reforms and their implications for corporations. His session last year generated much reaction from the floor, much of it from lawyers unused to hearing inside counsel publicly setting expectations in this context.
This is as good a mix of subjects and speakers as one could hope for. Those who attend will get more than the views of panels and speakers: you can expect a decent gathering of people whose problems are the same as yours, together with a large array of providers – this is a good opportunity to see many solutions in one room.