The Legal Profession in the New Economy

SELC wants to live in a world where every town and city has legal professionals providing assistance to urban farms, worker cooperatives, food cooperatives, car sharing programs, cottage-scale enterprises, housing cooperatives, and other projects that create local ownership and build community resilience.

This has implications for how and where lawyers are trained, what skills they learn, what legal areas they study, how they establish law practices, how they relate to clients, how they communicate, how they charge for services, and so much more. The legal profession must change to keep pace with innovations of the new economy, and SELC would like to help it do that.

SELC provides many resources and opportunities to aspiring and current legal professionals. Our projects include:

  • SELC’s Book, Practicing Law in the Sharing Economy: Published in 2012 by the American Bar Association, this book is a must-have for attorneys interested in developing the basic skills and knowledge to serve the legal needs of the sharing economy. More information about the book is available here.  Click to purchase the book or the ebook.  To make the book more accessible to low-income legal professionals, the ABA provides this discount code for 50% off: PAB12SHR 
  • MCLE Workshops for Attorneys: Since 2010, SELC has taught many classes on various facets of practicing law in the sharing economy. In Fall of 2013, SELC is offering a 11-class workshop series to attorneys and recent law school graduates. Click here for details of the workshops.


  • Developing Resources on Legal Apprenticeships at LikeLincoln is resource website and blog about ways of becoming an attorney without going to law school. All non-attorney staff at SELC are on a path toward becoming lawyers in California by apprenticing with attorneys, and we are sharing our experiences and resources in this process. We believe that legal apprenticeships are an important alternative to law school, because they enable people to become lawyers, regardless of their socio-economic status, geographical location, or learning needs. We also believe that apprenticeships – far more readily than law schools – can be tailored to train lawyers on the specific legal needs of the resilient communities movement. More information: 
  • The Sharing Economy Attorney Network (SEAN): SEAN will be an online network designed to connect sharing economy attorneys with one another and serve as a platform for growing the resources and knowledge available to sharing economy attorneys in the U.S. and beyond.  More information coming soon!
  • Internships for Law Students: Since 2010, SELC has hosted dozens of law student interns. More information on internship opportunities is available here.
  • A Weekly Living Classroom for Attorneys, Apprentices, and Law Students: SELC’s Resilient Communities Legal Cafe is a weekly legal advice clinic and discussion space that takes place in Oakland, Berkeley, and Richmond, CA. While we are providing essential legal services to community-based projects, we have also created a living classroom, where attorneys, apprentices, and law students may observe legal advice sessions, network with one another, use resources in our mobile law library, and take part in the many discussions and teach-ins we organize.  If you are interested in attending the Legal Cafe as an observer of legal advice sessions, please notify Ricardo in advance by emailing Ricardo[at]
  • Networking Events for Sharing Economy Legal Professionals: SELC regularly hosts happy hours designed to foster networking among lawyers, law students, and other legal professionals focused on serving the legal needs of the sharing economy.  See our event calendar for a listing of upcoming happy hours.