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Enter the Artificial Intelligence Writing Competition

Internet of Things

The Center for Legal and Court Technology (CLCT) is pleased to announce its fourth annual writing competition dedicated to innovative legal issues likely to arise from Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, and/or related technologies.

Artificial Intelligence is no longer a thing of the future. Whether it comes in the form of autonomous vehicles, facial recognition, diagnostic AI in medicine, or Deepfakes imagery, AI technology is here and presenting new and unprecedented dilemmas that those in the legal world and beyond must face. Whom does one hold accountable, for instance, when AI-powered stock trading software causes financial harm? How do we reconcile the interests of privacy and convenience in an ever more connected world? How can manufacturers of IoT devices reduce their legal liability? Questions like these represent only the tip of the iceberg, and you don’t have to be a Silicon Valley tech genius to answer them.

All current law students are cordially invited to submit one paper which must:

  • Present an interesting issue posed by these technologies;
  • Explain why it likely will arise and to what degree; and,
  • Analyze whether it can be resolved by the application of existing law.

A submission is not required to put forward a solution to the issue; however, any novel, plausible and well-articulated proposals are likely to impress the judges.

CLCT, a joint initiative of William & Mary Law School and the National Center for State Courts, is once again proud to launch the Innovative Legal Issues Likely To Arise From Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things Writing Competition. CLCT is the world center for courtroom and related technology. Its courtroom, the world’s most technologically advanced, is supported by technology loans from many companies. Thanks to a generous grant from CISCO, CLCT hopes that this competition will help law students explore the challenges that all judges, lawyers, and court officials will face in the future.

What do I submit?

A paper addressing one or more innovative legal issues likely to grow out of Artificial Intelligence or the Internet-of-Things. From AI liability issues to driverless cars, there are tons of issues to choose from. And don’t worry, you don’t need to solve the issue, but if there’s a plausible solution, make sure to include it! Papers should be no longer than 3,500 words including citations.

Can I enter?

Are you a law student in good standing currently enrolled at an ABA-accredited law school in the US or in a foreign law school with an equivalent accreditation? Then, yes, you can and should enter. Co-authored papers are also welcome, but please see Section 1, “Participants’ Eligibility,” of the Rules for further explanation and exceptions. We encourage students from diverse backgrounds to participate!

What is the prize?

The top three papers will receive cash prizes: first place $2,500, second place $1,500 and third place $1,000. The winners will also have the unique opportunity of presenting their papers to a selected audience of executives from Cisco Systems, Inc. The judges often also select one or more papers to receive an honorable mention, which does not entail a cash prize. The winning entries as well as any special mentions will be posted on the Center for Legal and Court Technology’s website.

How do I submit?

Read the competition guidelines for more on how to correctly format your paper and submission form. Then submit your paper via email to essaycompetition@lists.w…. Entries are due no later than 11:59 Eastern Standard Time (EST) on December 20, 2020.

Last Year’s Winners

The winners, all of whom will receive cash prizes funded by the Silicon Valley Community Foundation grant, were announced in May 2020, and they are:

  • First prize was awarded to “On the Cost of Botnet Attacks Increasing IoT Manufacturer Accountability,” by Nicholas Eitsert, Indiana University Maurer School of Law (J.D., class of 2021).
  • Second prize went to “Patenting Artificial Intelligence Inventions,” by Andrea Ortega, University of California, Berkeley (LL.M., class of 2020).
  • Third place was awarded to “Ethical Issues in AI-powered Legal Tech,” by Bonny Qiao, Indiana University Maurer School of Law (J.D., class of 2020).

 Two papers were also awarded a Special Mention:

  • Special mention to “Should (A)I Stay Or Should (A)I Go? Black Box AI Challenges Data Protection Law,” by Francesca Mazzi, Queen Mary, University of London (Ph.D. in Law, class of 2021).
  • Special mention to “Authorship in Works Created by Artificial Intelligence,” by Arth Nagpal, National Law School of India University (LL.B., class of 2021).

Submissions were received from across the globe, and authors approached various themes, including liability arising from IoT devices; intellectual property issues stemming from Artificial Intelligence; challenges introduced by facial recognition and deepfakes; insurance in the Big Data world; and ethical considerations in the changing relationship between humans and their artifacts.

Enter Today!