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‘We can’t live our lives in fear of uncertainty’ – Mitchell

16 May 2019 / business Print

‘We can’t live our lives in fear of uncertainty’

Lawyers are not very good at listening, DLA Piper Ireland managing partner David Carthy said last night at an event to celebrate the firm’s new Dublin office which opened a year ago.

He said the new business will engage in “design thinking” in acknowledgment of the work lawyers need to do in improving their listening skills.

“When the goldfish bowl is shaken in business, we like to be the ones advising on that,” he said.

The firm is comfortable with radical change and diversity of thought, he said.

Troubled history

“Ireland has had a troubled history at times, of people from the same background, speaking the same way and walking us into blind alleys,” he said.

Global business law firm DLA Piper set up in Dublin to serve firms with a global reach who need an advisor in Dublin, its managing partner David Carthy said last night.


“We can reach out and solve problems for people who need an advisor in Dublin and we can do it under one engagement,” he said.

He said DLA Piper has a global mind-set  in having an understanding and curiosity about other cultures, and their services are also globally benchmarked.

Formerly of William Fry, Carthy thanked those lawyers who had come across from other firms to work in the new Dublin office, which  has a presence in over 40 countries and 99 offices globally.

Client mandates

“We are growing client mandates,” he said and the Dublin team is constantly integrating itself into the DLA Piper global family.

The Dublin branch has plans to grow to over one hundred lawyers.

“For the Irish legal market, this is clearly a time of change,” Carthy said.

“It won’t be track record and history that gets you through the next while, it will be attitude and approach,” he said.

Many of those international lawyers flew into to Dublin last night for the official launch of the Dublin office at the Gravity Bar in Dublin 8.

US Senator George Mitchell said the international presence at the launch last night – with lawyers from the US, South Africa and London offices – was a demonstration of the firm’s belief in Ireland.


“As a business we are engaged in doing good things, for profit, and we look for important markets around the world.

“We believe in Ireland as a place of growth, prosperity, not just for the people who live here but for the people who benefit from what is done here.

“Increasingly Ireland is engaged in international business, both on the receiving and the sending end.

Inter-connected world

“When we conceived this firm, nearly two decades ago, we thought that as international businesses became larger in an increasingly inter-connected world, that those who provided services to international business should join them in expanding around the world, so as better to meet their needs,” he said.

“The same thing has happened here in Ireland in parallel with what we’ve done for the past twenty years.

“Ireland is increasingly the recipient of investment from around the world. Although its economy comprises only 1% of the European economy, it receives about 12% of inward investment from the US,” he said


Ireland increasingly recognises the importance of adapting harnessing technological change with an emphasis on skills and knowledge and providing services, as needed and on time.

This marks one of the reasons for Ireland’s success, he said.

On Brexit, Senator Mitchell said that every society faces challenges and difficult problems.

“There are uncertainties everywhere, and we can’t live our lives in fear of uncertainty.

Make progress

“We have to live our lives in an effort to make progress, for ourselves, for those with whom we deal, and for those whom we represent,” Senator Mitchell said.

“We believe in Ireland, we love Ireland.

"For me, this is a tremendous personal pleasure,” he said.

“I’ve spent much of the last 25 years of my life in Ireland and working on Irish issues.


“I’m an American and proud of it…but a large part of my heart and of my emotions, and now, fortuitously, of my work will be here in Ireland,” he said.

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