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Center for Legal Innovation


Oliver Goodenough leads Vermont Law School’s Center for Legal Innovation as its Director. He has a history as an academic leader in legal innovation, pioneering both the digital law revolution and applications of cognitive science to law. Indeed, Professor Goodenough’s research and writing at the intersection of law, economics, finance, media, technology, neuroscience and behavioral biology make him an authority in several emerging areas of law. He has expertise in the impact of digital technology on law, with a particular emphasis on using the internet to create digital business organizations, using structured languages to create financial transparency within large data sets and using the internet to improve the support provided by law for innovation and entrepreneurship generally.

In addition to VLS, where he is a professor of law, he is currently a Faculty Fellow at The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, where he has served as co-director of the Law Lab project, a Research Fellow of the Gruter Institute for Law and Behavioral Research, and an Adjunct Professor at Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering. He has recently joined the Office of Financial Research at the Department of the Treasury as a researcher on a part time basis. His research includes cloud computing governance, digital institutions for supporting entrepreneurship, and the neurological basis for internal commitments. He has managed the development of a software platform for forming and operating business organizations online. His recent publications include Law, Mind and Brain, co-edited with Michael Freeman, (Ashgate 2009) and Law and the Brain, co-edited with Semir Zeki (Oxford University Press 2006). Professor Goodenough received his B.A. from Harvard University and his J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. In 2000 he won the Lee Loevinger Jurimetrics Research Award for his work on law and neuroscience, in 2002 the Gruter Institute Bene Merenti Award for outstanding achievements in law and behavioral research, and in 2010 the Vermont Law School Richard Brooks Faculty Scholarship Prize for scholarly achieve.

Jeanne Eicks co-teaches Digital Drafting at Vermont Law School with Oliver Goodenough. She also participates in and manages collaborative projects between students, faculty and industry partners on behalf of the Center for Legal Innovation. Her past experience includes serving as CEO of an internet firm, managing information technology for Vermont Law School and starting several degree programs during her tenure as a professor at Vermont Technical College. She recently published a chapter in Educating the Digital Lawyer as well as a wiki piece on cloud contracting. Jeanne received her BA from Washington University in Saint Louis, JD from Vermont Law School and MS in Internet Strategy Management from the Graduate Center at Marlboro College.

Rebecca Purdom is the assistant dean of the Environmental Law Program at Vermont Law School, where she chairs the Distance Learning Program, works with the Center on Agriculture and Food Systems, and teaches in the environmental program. Professor Purdom has a unique expertise in the application of new pedagogical models to legal education. She chairs the Working Group for Distance Learning in Legal Education, a national group of law school faculty and practitioners focused on promoting reform in legal education, convened under the umbrella the Program on the Legal Profession at Harvard Law School. A VLS graduate, she pursued a career in natural resources, policy and nonprofit management after law school and later worked in innovative sustainability education at Green Mountain College. She edits the SSRN Journal on Innovation in Legal Education with Oliver Goodenough. Rebecca holds a BS from Linfield College, JD and MSEL from Vermont Law School.

Ken Rumelt is a staff attorney and assistant professor in Vermont Law School's Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic where he handles environmental cases, teaches, and supervises student clinicians. Professor Rumelt incorporates technology at the clinic to represent clients and as a tool for teaching advocacy in the digital age. Professor Rumelt also has several years of class action litigation experience as a contract attorney with firms in St. Louis and Denver. Ken earned a BA in environmental studies from the University of Colorado and a JD from St. Louis University School of Law. He received an LLM degree, magna cum laude, from the Environmental LLM program at VLS in 2012. He is admitted to practice in Vermont.