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The Who's Who Legal 100: Methodology

Established readers of our guides will be familiar with the Who's Who Legal 70, previously included as part of the prefatory material in The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers. These listings offered some further information on the 70 highest performing firms in our research, briefly sketching the firm's awards and achievements during the research period.

The Who's Who Legal 100 does more: we select a further 30 firms and provide a more in-depth report on the world's 100 leading law firms based on:

  • the total number of lawyers listed from a firm. Our research invites clients and private practitioners, as well as related professionals such as economists, expert witnesses, accountants and government officials, to make recommendations of private practitioners with the aim of producing a list of those lawyers that, by peer consensus, are the foremost names in their areas of practice.
  • the total number of practice areas in which the firm earns listings. By fielding highly nominated lawyers across a range of 31 legal disciplines firms prove the breadth and depth of their expertise.
  • the total number of jurisdictions in which the firm has a presence. Recent mergers and tie-ups among prominent firms – including several in the edition – bear witness to the increasing importance firms are placing on having a physical presence in key markets in order to best serve clients.
  • the number of recommended lawyers per jurisdiction. We took into account not only the geographical spread of each firm but also, so as not to work to the exclusion of smaller firms with strength-in-depth in fewer offices, the volume of listings firms achieved in each representative office.

Selection Methodology

Selection for the Who's Who Legal 100 is based on law firms' overall performance in the research. While our focus throughout the Who's Who Legal series is on individual lawyers, we have used these results to assess each firm’s performance across all areas of work and across all offices. Of over 2,000 firms listed in the Who's Who Legal series, only 100 have the required depth and breadth of talent to be featured in the Who's Who Legal 100.

Selection Distribution

Hard copies of the publication have been sent free of charge to local and international in-house counsel and corporate officers. Copies have also been sent to those who assisted with research and all those recognised within Who's Who Legal 100. Copies of the edition can be purchased in our online bookshop.

As the official research partner of the International Bar Association and the strategic research partner of the American Bar Association Section of International Law, Who's Who Legal will circulate complimentary copies of the publication amongst delegates at key conferences worldwide.

Online Coverage

The full content of the Who's Who Legal 100 is now available on this website with keyword coverage ensuring listings appear at the forefront of results on search engines.

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Who's Who Legal 100

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It is not possible to buy entry into any Who's Who Legal publication

Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

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W11 1QQ, UK