Diversity and Inclusion highlights Chambers USA 2021

In the latest edition of Chambers USA, we have continued our efforts to promote and rank a diverse group of lawyers. Read the statistics on our D&I coverage within the guide and discover which state saw the highest percentage of ranked women.

Published on 20 May 2021
Written by Luke Vincett
Luke Vincett

The Diversity and Inclusion featured in Chambers USA 2021

The 2021 edition of Chambers USA is our most comprehensive guide yet. As our research process continuously evolves with the latest technology, sector developments and client needs, we are delighted to now include more in-depth coverage of ranked firms and individuals than ever before. 

While the Covid-19 pandemic has dominated the news, firms have been doubling down on commitments to diversity and inclusion across the USA, while clients continue to drive change with increasingly strong measures.  

How we champion the need for a diverse legal market in the United States

At Chambers, we have updated the submission document template to include department diversity statistics, enabling us to clearly measure the presence of diverse lawyers in each department within a law firm for the first time. This information increases our understanding of the demographics of practice areas, enabling us to better reflect the diversity of the profession.  

These changes to our research have been carried out in conjunction with all research teams receiving D&I training and addressing the impact of gendered language in editorial. This is part of an ongoing initiative to enhance our research processes and ensure they are free from unconscious bias.  

The Diversity & Inclusion statistics for the Chambers 2021 USA legal rankings

As a consequence of this positive action taken by our editorial, D&I and leadership teams, there has been a 2% increase in the total number of individual rankings given to women across the USA Guide from 2020-2021. Our findings show that in 2021 women lawyers hold 22% of all individual rankings. The number of individual women ranked in the guide is now 4,850, a 29% year-on-year increase. Over the last five years, the number of women ranked in the guide has increased by 46%.  

Oregon was the state with the highest proportion of ranked women, at 35%. In our coverage of Associates to Watch, Star Associates and Up & Coming individuals, 44% of newly ranked lawyers are women, indicating the success of our efforts to increase the number of newly ranked women. The results have been positive, but we know there remains a long way to go to ensure our rankings are reflective of the diversity of the profession. 

A data-driven platform to analyze the legal market

The above data was collected using the Chambers Business Intelligence platform, utilising data collected through our research. Chambers BI provides actionable insights and intelligence to support decision making, allowing firms to easily identify market trends, risks and new opportunities. To learn more about the platform and to request your firm's free demo, please click here.

Celebrating diversity

Beyond our practice area research, this year the Chambers Diversity and Inclusion: North America 2021 Awards, in association with Kirkland and Ellis, take place on June 17. We received more submissions than ever before and will be publishing a briefing report highlighting the most important trends alongside the awards.  

We have been delighted to see an increased focus on D&I and pro bono from many firms across the USA and we will continue to raise awareness and share best practice for D&I and pro bono through events and digital content. Similarly, collaborating to collect and track D&I data is essential to making progress in this respect, and particularly for our rankings to reflect the breadth of talent in the legal profession across the globe. By working together on this vital movement, together we can achieve this goal. 

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