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FT Innovative Lawyers 2015 is a rankings report and awards for Europe-based lawyers. Shortlists for the awards comprise the top ranked submissions in each section of the report.

The FT and its research partner RSG Consulting have devised a unique methodology to rank lawyers on innovation. Law firms, in-house legal teams and other legal service organisations are invited to submit their innovations. These are then fully researched through telephone interviews and online feedback. No entry appears in the FT report without thorough research and analysis. Market experts are also called in to assess the submissions and the research.

Each entry is scored out of 10 points for originality, rationale and impact for a maximum score of 30. Entries are then benchmarked against each other to arrive at the final rankings. Lawyers are ranked for delivering exceptional value to business.

The in-house lawyers rankings are drawn from nominations as well as submissions, but all entries require third-party validation and commendation.

FT 10: law firm innovators 2015

The FT 10 ranking is a pure aggregate of each law firm’s performance across the private practice categories of the report. The scores are comprised of:

Legal expertise: total score for entries ranked in the corporate and commercial, finance, dispute resolution, competition and intellectual property categories.

Business of law: total score for entries ranked in the client service, social responsibility, strategic resourcing, growth and business development, and technology categories.

Total score: total score for entries ranked in all 10 categories.

This year we have truncated the ranking, in previous years the FT 50, to accommodate a ranking of the Game changing European law firms of the past 10 years, commemorating the 10th edition of the Europe report. This ranking is based on each submitting law firm’s answers to five questions considering growth, change, operational innovation, legal innovation and contribution to the profession.

For the FT Innovative Lawyers 2015 report, 568 submissions and nominations were received and RSG Consulting interviewed and sought feedback from more than 515 clients, lawyers and experts to arrive at the final rankings. Submissions were received from 114 law firms and an additional 40 in-house teams were researched. The research was conducted by a team of 10 RSG researchers between May and September 2015.


A panel of judges decides the winner for the legal innovator of the year and young legal innovator of the year awards, from a shortlist of 10 and five respectively.

The judges for legal innovator of the year were:

Mike Skapinker, associate editor, FT
Rohit Jaggi, editor, FT Innovative Lawyers
Stephen Denyer, head of City and international, The Law Society
Laura Empson, professor of professional services management, Cass Business School
Bob Gogel, chief executive, Integreon
Beverly Landais, marketing and business development director, Saunderson House

The judges for young legal innovator of the year were:

Rohit Jaggi, editor, FT Innovative Lawyers
Laura Ansell
, senior consultant, RSG Consulting
Rosemary Martin
, group general counsel and company secretary, Vodafone
Reena SenGupta
, chief executive, RSG Consulting


Experts consulted for the report rankings this year were:

Anita Davies, Matrix Chambers
Hugh Mercer QC, Essex Court Chambers
Derek Southall, partner, Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co
Rhodri Thompson QC, Matrix Chambers
Alastair Wilson QC, managing barrister, Hogarth Chambers
David Wingfield, barrister, Fountain Court Chambers

RSG Consulting

The RSG Consulting research team has more than 20 years’ experience analysing the legal profession and has a track record of devising ranking methodologies for professional services firms. Reena SenGupta, chief executive, helped to launch the FT’s Law & Business page in 2001, and has been a regular writer on the legal profession for the FT for 14 years.

The RSG Consulting research team this year were:

Reena SenGupta
Yasmin Lambert
Lucy Pearson
Laura Ansell
Victoria Harris
Katie O’Riordan
Joshua James
Helen Jenkins
Scott Shustak
Hannah Bledsoe

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