As regular readers of this blog know, it is intended to “engage in dialogue that is both scholarly and practical, to dig into the empirical work that is relevant to DR, and to reflect on the reality of DR in action, for better and for worse.  We will be posting on a regular basis, and we hope that you will add to the richness of this blog by sharing your reactions and comments.  Point us to great articles, interesting cases or programs, new research, or even something funny.  We also expect this blog to serve as a home for the numerous other resources available in DR.  The links we provide will highlight law school programs, conferences, research sites, and teaching resources available through many other productive colleagues.  And so, we look forward to the adventure of blogging and invite you to join us on this journey.”

I am writing to renew the invitation to contribute to the blog in a number of ways.  In particular, I invite you to use an easy no-fuss, no-muss way to develop and share knowledge from conferences, CLEs, and other educational events by posting summaries on this blog.

Creating and Sharing Knowledge from Educational Events

As part of the Stone Soup Project, we have used these events to develop and share knowledge about the reality of DR practice by systematically eliciting knowledge from the audiences.  It is easy to plan to ask a few questions and treat the audience like a focus group, eliciting people’s experiences and perspectives.

We arranged for people to take notes and later we posted summaries of the programs.  This not only provides a record for the attendees (who probably would forget most of what transpired), it also shares insights with people who didn’t attend.

When you have invested all the effort to plan and conduct the program, it takes only a small amount of additional time to summarize the insights from the program, especially if others take notes.

You might plan to use this approach at the upcoming ABA and Pepperdine Past and Future conferences, among others.  At the ABA conference, they have again recruited “young scholars” to attend the conference and serve as notetakers.  If you would like to have a young scholar take notes at your session, email Linda Seely to see if there might be one available for you.  Students attend many educational events and may be available to take notes on a laptop.  Even if not, usually you can find someone to do so.

We developed these simple guidelines to help you plan to create knowledge at these events, with instructions for notetakers.  This document provides a model for notetakers’ notes.

Although the Stone Soup Project is oriented to producing knowledge about DR practice from practitioners, you can create knowledge from other audiences.  For example, the LEAPS Project used a similar process to collect information from educators at the Legal Educators’ Colloquium.

If you are planning a conference program or CLE event, consider spending some time during the program to ask the audience to share their knowledge about important questions on your subject.

Even if you don’t elicit input from audiences at your programs, you still can share your insights by summarizing the key points for a blog post.

The Stone Soup website has more information about this, including model posts.

Other Ways to Use the Blog to Share Knowledge

You can contribute to the discussion in additional ways, as people have done in the past.  In particular, you can:

  • write a post of your own.
  • write a post responding to one of the bloggers.
  • if you don’t want to write a full response, you can comment on a post. (The spam-catcher snags some legitimate comments, so if you don’t see your comment posted within a day or so, let us know.)
  • share information about a resource for teaching or scholarship, an upcoming event, honor for a colleague, or anything else you think readers might want to know about.
  • ask me to write a review of an article or book.

I hope you will accept this invitation from time to time.  Let me know if you would like me to post something for you.








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