Laura Quinn’s presentation from LSC’s Innovations in Technology Conference
Spare a couple of minutes and listen to this insightful presentation by Laura Quinn on how the Drake Formula could be applied to the access-to-justice sector.
Devised by the astrophysicist Frank Drake in 1961, the Drake formula was initially meant to quantify the likelihood of extraterrestrial intelligence in the Milky Way Galaxy by using seven variables. The question then inevitably arises: what could all of this have to do with access-to-justice projects? The Florida Justice Technology Centre (FJTC) has the answer. Partnering with organizations nationwide (LSC, IALS) and relying on support from Pew, RAND, and the Harvard A2J Lab, the FJTC reinvented the Drake Formula to measure and benchmark online access-to-justice projects. Using five variables (one being the number of people targeted by a certain project, for instance), it can come up with a fairly accurate prediction as to the potential usefulness and popularity of an access-to-justice project. At bottom, it is very hard to estimate both the number of alien forms of life and the effectiveness of access-to-justice services. Nonetheless, conceptual tools like the Drake Formula can help us build a framework that informs our research and educates our guesses.
You can watch the presentation here