Law graduate makes big impression in legal publishing world
Brooke MacKenzie (Law ’12) is already a twice-published law journal author. Two of her papers were accepted for publication in one year – one by the Advocates’ Quarterly and the second by the Canadian Bar Review.
“Having them published in a sequence attests not only to her ability to take a pressing problem and come up with a creative way to analyze it, but also her ability to find the pulse of the litigation community at an early stage in her career,” says supervisor Erik Knutsen (Law).
Her most recent paper – Better Value: Problems with the Billable Hour and the Viability of Value-Based Billing – is scheduled to be published in the Canadian Bar Review. The paper argues that time-based billing facilitates unethical practices, rewards inefficiency and fails to provide clients with certainty and accountability.
The lack of Canadian scholarly literature directly on point, coupled with her experiences working in different legal settings – in a small human rights firm, Queen’s Legal Aid and a Bay Street firm – motivated Ms MacKenzie to write on the topic.
“I’ve docketed all my time in all the law-related positions I’ve held,” she explained, “but I’ve always questioned if my time was a true measure of the value I provided to clients.”
Her first paper – Settling for Less: How the Rules of Civil Procedure Overlook the Public Perception of Justice – was published in December 2011 in Advocates’ Quarterly. It argues that settling lawsuits can contribute to uncertainty in the law and exacerbate existing inequalities, and advocates for a system that promotes settlement in a way that does not discourage parties from going to trial when it is in their best interest to do so.