Resource – The Electronic Discovery Reference Model (EDRM)

One of the resources that I would recommend to an individual interested in litigation support is a website related to The Electronic Discovery Reference Model (EDRM). Almost 10 years after I began working in the litigation support field, the concept of The EDRM Model was launched in response to a major concern from many in our industry regarding the lack of standards and guidelines in the handling of electronic discovery. Independent consultants, George Socha and Tom Gelbmann, formed a group to design the model in 2005.

The completed reference model provides a common, flexible and extensible framework for the development, selection, evaluation and use of electronic discovery products and services.

The EDRM articulates, in an easy to understand fashion, the life cycle of the litigation support process as we support the legal team with a matter involving electronic discovery. It involves all parties including the client, in-house counsel, outside counsel, litigation support teams, service providers, the court system and government agencies.


The EDRM Stages are referenced in the above diagram and are described in more detail on the EDRM site through individual guides for each stage. In addition, the last guide goes over the EDRM Project Management Framework as shown below.

I suggest that you spend the time to read through all of the material in the guides. It is an excellent way to learn about the process as well as learn some of the terminology we use. Another resource within the EDRM site that you could refer back to in the future is the Glossary which contains definitions of electronic discovery terms.

John Tredennick wrote an interesting article entitled “What is Wrong with the EDRM Model?” discussing what he felt was missing from the EDRM diagram. I thought you might find it a good read as well.



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