Liz McCurry Johnson is bringing legal research to the digital age

Photo of Liz Johnson

Liz McCurry Johnson, a reference librarian and member of Wake Forest Law’s Legal Analysis, Writing and Research (LAWR) faculty, authored “The Practical Obscurity of the Green Screen Terminal: A Case Study on Accessing Jury Selection Data” which will be published​ as “Accessing Jury Selection Data in a Pre-Digital Environment​” in The American Journal of Trial Advocacy in Fall 2017. The article received the 2017 American Association of Law Libraries (AALL)/ LexisNexis Call for Papers award.

The article is part of a series of papers that discuss jury selections “by providing a positive, personal account with field data on how litigants pick a jury,” specifically focusing on the challenges of acquiring historical data of jury selection outcomes. As a collaborator in the Wake Forest Law Jury Sunshine Project, Johnson discovered these challenges in data acquisition in legal, technological, and organizational capacities. Her article offers innovative research techniques to combat these obstacles and provides insight on potential reasons as to why the government permitted these public records go dormant. This article is a part of a larger bed of legal scholarship by Professors Ron Wright, Kami Chavis and Gregory Parks who will further discuss the findings of this data through the Wake Forest Law Jury Sunshine Project.

Johnson is also the author of the Wake Forest Law Review article, “LexisNexis Risk Management v. N.C. A.O.C.: How the N.C. Supreme Court Gutted Open Access in 2016,” which she presented alongside her article on accessing jury data at the Cornell Law Library Speaker Series in April 2017. The article addresses LexisNexis Risk Management v. N.C. A.O.C. and how it affects researchers looking to explore N.C. public records data in the aggregate. As an interim solution, Johnson suggests “budgeting for and implementing a new data management system in order to bring the N.C. Clerk’s offices into a digital age.”

Liz McCurry Johnson’s teaching and scholarship are concentrated in the areas of the use of technology in the legal academy, outreach services provided by libraries, and teaching practice-centered legal research. She is also the author of “A Case Study: Teaching Legal Research and Writing in a Fully-Integrated Way,” a forthcoming publication of The Second Draft that was recognized on SSRN’s Top Ten download list for the LSN: Education Research (Topic) and Legal Writing eJournal.