Leicester Law School

Law news

Browse news stories published by the Leicester Law School.

23 May 2024

Law school academics discuss feminist methodology with European judges

Loveday Hodson and Troy Lavers explore how to make international judgments more just and inclusive.

Following from a successful workshop with Judges from the Hague in 2023, Dr Loveday Hodson and Dr Troy Lavers as well as other authors from their book Feminist Judgments in International Law organised a successful meeting on 17 May with and judges from the European Court of Human Rights to discuss how feminist ideas can shape judgment writing. 

Judges from the European Court of Human Rights and academics from Leicester and beyond came together to explore how feminist methodology can be used by judges when deciding the outcome of cases. Using examples taken from a book edited by Drs Hodson and Lavers, participants explored how adopting different approaches to judgment writing can lead to very different outcomes in international cases. Topics of discussion included abortion rights, domestic violence, gender identity, freedom of expression and bans on wearing headscarves. The discussion had wide-reaching implications for thinking about how to make international judgments more just and inclusive. Further discussions and events with feminist academics and judges to follow.

The organisers wish to thank the funders, the Rapid Response Scheme from the Economic and Social Research Council Impact Acceleration Account. Also we were grateful to be partnered with Institut Carré Malberg at Strasbourg University; the seeds of this partnership were sown at a CELI-organised meeting between the Institut and Leicester Law School. 

16 May 2024

CELI Director appointed to Advisory Board of Leading Journal in European Law, May 2024

Industrial Law Journal coverProfessor Katja Ziegler was invited to join the Advisory Board of European Public Law

European Public Law is a leading journal in the area of European and comparative public law, including the implementation of EU law in the Member States, published by Kluwer. It is a longstanding journal founded in 1995 by doyen of the discipline, Professor Patrick Birkinshaw, now emeritus professor at Hull University. Professor Ziegler commented: “I am honoured and thrilled to be joining the distinguished advisory board and to be given the opportunity support the journal into the future under the capable leadership of its editors-in-chief, Professor Carlo Panara and Dr Mike Varney. It is a crucial time for scholarship in European law in the UK and the journal must play its part to maintain and develop it into the future.” 

15 May 2024

Staff Distinctions May 2024

Congratulations to the following staff:

  • Teresa Rowe and Steve Evans who received the Leicester University Law Society (LULS) Staff Appreciation Accolade for their outstanding contributions to the society.
  • Legal Advice Clinic who received a pledge from Sir Nick Green for £30,000 (£15,000 this year and £15,000 next year). 
  • Joycelin Eze-Okubuiro who was invited as a guest speaker by the University of Birmingham Business in its Decolonisation Project on 27 March 2024, and delivered a paper on 'Reflection on decolonial pedagogy in the higher education: Are the benefits one-sided?' 
  • Rufat Babayev who published his book Private Autonomy in EU Internal Market Law: Parameters of its Protection and Limitation by Hart in April.

7 May 2024

Global South Network: Fostering Research and Engagement  

The Global South Network (GSN), led by Dr Nauman Reayat, is dedicated to promoting research and knowledge exchange on issues related to the Global South.  

Their recent activities include:

  • International Conferences on ‘Law, Society, and Academia in the Global South’ and ‘Rethinking Research and Teaching on International Law’.  
  • ‘PhD in Progress’ Series with over 40 presentations from PhD researchers across 22 universities. These seminars provided a platform for interdisciplinary discussions on socio-legal matters impacting the Global South.  
  • Blog initiative with nine peer-reviewed blogs published to date.  
  • UK-wide PGR Community to connect PhD students across diverse fields.  
  • A coaching/mentoring program that has already helped one applicant secure a full international fee waiver for PhD studies.

18 March 2024

Leicester University Law Society Celebrates Achievements at Awards Night 2024

The Leicester University Law Society (LULS) hosted its annual awards evening on March 18th, 2024, marking a successful year and recognizing outstanding contributions.

This year's event saw a special collaboration with fellow law societies, including Pro Bono, Pan African Law, Women in Law, Sports and Entertainment, and Canadian Law. The ceremony acknowledged both staff and courses, with nominations coming directly from students. Erica Naylor and Reena Kaur were commended for their exceptional efforts in organizing the event, ensuring a memorable celebration for all.

Award Highlights

Education Excellence Awards:
Best Course for First Year: Tort Law
Best Course for Second Year: Criminal Law
Best Course for Third Year: Employment Law

Education Excellence Awards - Lecturers:
Best Lecturer for First Year: Nicky Jackson & Arwen Joyce (joint award)
Best Lecturer for Second Year: Dan Bansal
Best Lecturer for Third Year: Oxana Golynker

LULS Staff Appreciation Accolades:
Outstanding Contributions to the Society: Steve Evans & Teresa Rowe (joint award)
Outstanding Dedication to Aspiring City Lawyers: Masood Ahmed

The collaborative effort with fellow societies and the recognition of both staff and students solidified the awards evening as a celebration of the entire Leicester Law School community.

15 March 2024

Special issue of Industrial Law Journal explores migration and exploitation in employment

Industrial Law Journal coverArwen Joyce and Bernard Ryan edited a special issue of the Industrial Law Journal published in March 2024.

Professor Bernard Ryan and Dr Arwen Joyce edited a special issue of the Industrial Law Journal (Volume 53, Issue 1, March 2024) addressing exploitation in the employment sphere involving migrant workers. The aim of the issue was to contribute to policy debates related to regular migration under restrictive regimes, forced labour, labour trafficking, and the vulnerability of migrants.

The papers in the issue were first presented at a workshop hosted at the University of Leicester in September 2022 and sponsored by the Modern Law Review called ‘Migration and Exploitation in Employment: Concepts, Designs and Responses’.

In this special issue, papers by Dr Maayan Niezna (University of Liverpool), Dr Arwen Joyce, and Dr Natalie Sedacca (Durham University) explore concepts and patterns of labour exploitation, empirical research on the experiences of migrant workers, and civil society responses to exploitation.

The special issue editors are grateful to all the academic and civil society participants who contributed to the workshop discussions and to Professor Simon Deakin, Editor in Chief of the Industrial Law Journal, for his editorial support. All the papers in the issue have been published open access on the journal’s website.

14 March 2024

Staff distinctions March 2024

Congratulations to the following staff:

  • Dr Eki Omorogbe who has been nominated for the Justitia Awards 2024. The Justitia Awards honor outstanding women in all legal professions. This international recognition has been awarded by The Women in Law Initiative since 2019.
  • Abbie Hampton and Valentina Dimitriou (former staff member) for passing their vivas and PhD.
  • Rossana Deplano who featured as one of the eight external experts who have influenced the latest White Paper on Space Data Ethics by the US Space Council’s Advisory Group and she was mentioned in The Times article on asteroid mining.

11 March 2024

Migrant workers in the UK at risk of severe exploitation

Research led by Dr Inga Thiemann highlights structural risks in the UK’s agriculture and care visa regimes.

A new report, ‘UK agriculture and care visas: worker exploitation and obstacles to redress’ out today is the latest in a string of damning evidence showing migrant workers are being made vulnerable to exploitation and in some cases, modern slavery, due to hostile immigration policies and the risks inherent in sector-specific work visas. Since the end of free movement and skills shortages that followed, there has been an increase in the use of restrictive, sector-specific visas which effectively tie workers to their employers and make it virtually impossible to change jobs without risking their right to live in the UK. 
The full report and research summary can be found here.

Led by principal investigator Dr Inga Thiemann (Leicester University), a team consisting of Dr Manoj Dias-Abey (Bristol University), Dr Natalie Sedacca (Durham University), Dr Joyce Jiang (York University) and Prof Konstantinos Alexandris-Polomarkakis (Royal Holloway), the NGOs Focus on Labour Exploitation (FLEX), The Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI), Southeast and East Asian Centre (SEEAC) and Kanlungan Filipino Consortium (Kanlungan) conducted the research for the report. The research has been funded by the Modern Slavery and Human Rights Policy and Evidence Centre.

2 February 2024

Staff distinctions January 2024

Congratulations to the following staff:

8 December 2023

Staff distinctions November 2023

Congratulations was given to:

  • Eki Omorogbe who received an award from a Rotary group in Nigeria. Eki was nominated by a member of Security for Development in Nigeria, a civil society group with which ILPAN has collaborated.
  • Bernard Ryan co-edited book, Migrant Labour and the Reshaping of Employment Law had been published by Hart Publishing.
  • Navajyoti Samanta had been awarded funding from the University’s ESRC IAA Rapid Response Fund for a colloquium in New Delhi in December 2023 that would involve policymakers, civil servants and industry stakeholders. The colloquium aimed to influence the Indian Finance Ministry’s adoption of a regulatory framework for AI-mediated decision making in the financial sector, and the banking federation’s establishment of a dispute resolution mechanism for individuals who were unhappy with the AI-mediated decisions.
  • Mandy Burton who had a Research contract (£74, 948) to be the academic lead for the Family Court Reporting and Review Mechanism for the Office of the Domestic Abuse Commissioner (October 23- October 24). The pilot would scope existing data sets and involve an intensive three court study in selected courts in England and Wales. The project was awarded following competitive tendering under the Crown Commercial Services Research and Insights Framework.’
  • Nauman Reayat had launched the GSN WordPress website: www.globalsouthnetwork.com. The website was the first ever website led by an early career academic based in a UK-based law school that received contributions from individuals and groups from different backgrounds and nationalities: PGRs, Scholars, Judges, and Civil Society Organisations.
  • Joycelin Eze-Okubuiro had been awarded £500 grant from the Relationship Builders Scheme and would be organising a workshop ‘Rethinking Research and Teaching on International Law: Challenges and prospects for the funding which would take place on 22 November 2023. This was a collaborative event with the International Law Association, Nigerian Branch (Teaching of International Law and the SDGs Committee) and the Global South Network. Joycelin has also been appointed Vice-Chair of the SDGs Committee.
  • Rossana Deplano had been awarded a ESRC IAA award (£1,510) to deliver a 5-day Seminar Series on Space Law at Rey Juan Carlos University, Madrid in May 2024.
  • Laura Bee who was a finalist in the Next Hundred Years Inspirational Women Awards, celebrating women who champion equality in law. This was on top of her being shortlisted for the University Citizen Award that would be announced on 30 November 2023.

8 November 2023

Major new documentary, Everything Must Change

Reel Law, Law School film club

You are invited to a free screening of the major new documentary Everything Must Change. After the 90-minute screening, viewers are welcome to stay for a short discussion / Q&A with the filmmaker Shaun Dey. Shaun is the founder of Reel News, a media activist collective that works closely with progressive working-class movements. The film shows how the multiple crises we face in 2023 are deeply interlinked and offers solutions for a just transition.


Open to: Staff and students
Date and time: Wednesday 8 November 2023, 4:00pm
Venue: Attenborough Film Theatre
More information: alan.desmond@le.ac.uk

1 November 2023

‘What is a Relational Contract? Does Coherence Lurk Amongst Shapeshifting Incidents and Grandiloquent Language?’

Dr Haward Soper (Honorary research fellow, Leicester Law School) is giving a talk to the private law research cluster based on his paper recently published in the Singapore Journal of Legal Studies.

In recent years the term ‘relational’ to describe a ‘specie’, as Sir Peter Fraser described it in The Post Office Litigation (Post Office),  or class of contract, has gained currency in English Courts. Classes of contract are usually identifiable by reference to the parties, ‘such as that between landlord and tenant or between employer and employee’. In contrast relational contracts, a concept neither ‘stable nor definite’ according to Paul Davies, are a somewhat variable agminate of indeterminate and apparently breeding incidents, combined with confusing and grandiloquent epi-fiduciary language. I review the incidents, showing that they are incoherent and I propose a stable definition for the class of contracts – relational.


Open to: Staff and postgraduate research students
Date and time: 1 November 2023, 4.00pm – 5.00pm
Venue: Jan Grodecki Room
More information: Professor Peter Jaffey
Private Law Research Cluster event

1 November 2023

'Nietzsche and Exclusive Legal Positivism'

Dr Robert Craig (University of Bristol)

In an article published in the Notre Dame Law Review (‘On the incoherence of legal positivism’) in 2000, John Finnis explicitly connected exclusive legal positivism to the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche.

Today the promoters of this radical kind of "exclusive positivism" are the followers, conscious or unconscious, of Nietzsche or of others who like him reduce ethics and normative political or legal theory to a search for the "genealogy," the historical (perhaps partly or wholly physiological) sources of ethical, political, or legal standards.

This may seem a very surprising claim given that Nietzsche famously claimed “there are no facts, only interpretations”, which is perhaps more reminiscent of Legal Positivism’s most implacable enemy, Ronald Dworkin. It is perhaps even more puzzling given that famous postmodernists from Foucault to Derrida arguably have their roots in Nietzschean thinking and have spawned an entire “critical” literature which would appear to many to be diametrically opposed to classical legal positivism.

This paper seeks to explore the claim made by Finnis to assess its validity. It considers whether and to what extent HLA Hart and Raz can genuinely be classified as exclusive legal positivists and the implications for their thinking if the full extent of Nietzsche’s claims are followed through. The paper will suggest that Finnis was probably right and that exclusive legal positivism could gain much from further exploration of Nietzschean philosophy and its potential implications in legal philosophy.


Date and time: 1 November 2023, 2.00pm – 4.00pm
Venue: Online
More information: joe.wills@le.ac.uk
Law and Theory Research Cluster event

25 October 2023

‘Who’s Afraid of Dynamic Consent?’

Professor Jose Miola (Co-Director of CREHL, Leicester Law School) 


Open to: Staff and postgraduate research students
Date and time: 25 October 2023, 3:00–4:00pm
Venue: Jan Grodecki Room
More information: Professor Liz Wicks
Centre for Rights and Equality in Health Law

24 October 2023

‘The International Court of Justice and the Law of the Sea Dispute Settlement System’

Dr Nicholas Ioannides, University of Cyprus

This event will discuss the contribution of the International Court of Justice to the law of the sea dispute settlement system.

Browse more information on the event

16 October 2023

Staff distinctions September 2023

  • Dr Ed Bates was interviewed for an episode of the BBC Radio 4 programme The Briefing Room on the topic of the UK and the European Convention on Human Rights.
  • Professor Jose Miola delivered the Phil Walker Memorial Lecture at the University of Queensland in August 2023.
  • Professor Katja Ziegler was invited to join the Steering Committee for the 2024 London Conference on International Law which was fast emerging as the major UK conference in international law.
  • Dr Maribel Canto-Lopez, Dr Dan Bansal and Char-Lee Lewis for organising a successful conference on Assessment in Legal Education. The event was funded by the Association of Law Teacher and the Law Teacher. Both national and international colleagues discussed the challenges of the current academic landscape such as Chat GPT, authentic assessment and innovation in assessment. You can find session papers on X (previously Twitter) @alt_law
  • Colleagues shortlisted for the Citizens Awards

5 October 2023

Lady Hale on judicial diversity and the importance of the Supreme Court

On Thursday 5 October, Leicester Law School had the pleasure of hosting Lady Hale, Baroness of Richmond, to deliver a talk entitled ‘Law and Life’. 

Lady Hale was particularly keen to address the younger members of the audience with local secondary school pupils in attendance, and to instil within them the attitude that they should feel able to pursue whatever career they wanted and not be put off by gendered reputations of certain subjects. As the first women judge in the highest court in the UK, and the only woman to ever serve as a Lord of Appeal in Ordinary, Lady Hale is known for being a passionate advocate for diversity in the judiciary. She gave an inspiring talk in favour of judicial diversity and the importance of the Supreme Court, engaging her audience in thought experiments and inserting jokes to lighten the mood in order to take her diverse audience with her on her journey through her life in law.

The event was supported by Leicestershire Law Society, and DG Legal, and was attended by members of the executive committee of Leicestershire Law Society, students from both Leicester Law School and De Montfort Law School, and local secondary school pupils.

View a recording of Lady Hale’s talk on ‘Law and Life’.

6 September 2023

Assessment in Legal Education: towards an inclusive, diverse, and authentic strategy

Call for papers

If you could change assessment methods in legal education to offer a more inclusive, diverse, and authentic experience for staff and students, what would you do?

We are hosting a one-day conference at the University of Leicester on 6 September 2023 to explore this very issue.

Assessment in legal education is a perennial topic of discussion amongst law teachers and is commonly featured in the academic literature. However, despite assessment being a relatively well-trodden subject, there have been several recent catalysts causing assessments in legal education to change significantly:

  1. the Solicitors Regulatory Authority no longer regulates assessment methods in law schools in England and Wales, meaning that a more diverse strategy is now possible
  2. the global COVID-19 pandemic forced assessments to become solely online
  3. environmental considerations drive a more sustainable assessment strategy within Higher Education Institutions
  4. the impact of artificial intelligence (e.g., ChatGPT) on assessments
  5. the implementation of SQE

Additionally, in the wake of the global pandemic, law schools must now decide how to assess their students. Whether that is returning to the status quo and relying on traditional in-person closed book assessments and coursework as the predominant assessment method, moving wholly online following the changes brought about by the pandemic, or a middle-ground somewhere between these two positions.

Given these deliberations, we will bring legal academics and other key stakeholders to discuss how assessments in legal education within England and Wales may be reformed to offer students a more inclusive, diverse, and authentic assessment experience. The proposals/papers discussed at the conference will, individually and as a whole, make a significant and theoretical contribution to the field of legal education research. We will invite contributions around the above-mentioned contemporary themes.

Publication opportunities 

  • Following the conference, we are planning for each proposal/paper to feature in a special issue of The Law Teacher.
  • Contributors will develop their proposal into an article (word limit of 6,000–8,000 including footnotes).
  • Respondents will formally reply to each submission (word limit of 2,000–3,000 including footnotes).
  • Further details will be provided following the conference.

Organising committee

12 July 2023

Compulsory Mediation and the Civil Justice – How to go forward? Zora Kizilyurek

With the recent proposals and move towards implementation of mandatory mediation, it is time to go beyond discussing merits of compulsion.

The civil justice has been transitioning from the traditional substantive justice goals towards its contemporary goals such as proportionality, settlement-focus, and court as a last resort system. Thus, this paper will consider the role of court-ordered mediation from the lenses of current civil justice goals. Next, this paper will address some of the inherent risks compulsory mediation will bring. Finally, ways to minimise those risks will be discussed such as coherent understanding, informed acceptance and better collaboration between role players.  

Dispute Resolution Research Cluster event

11 July 2023

Welcome Lunch: Human Library at Law

The final Welcome Lunch of the year, where we will be hosting Dr Tracy Dix and the Human Library project.

"The Human Library creates a safe space for dialogue where topics are discussed openly between our human books and their readers. All of our human books are volunteers with personal experience with their topic. The Human Library is a place where difficult questions are expected, appreciated and answered. The Human Library is, in the true sense of the word, a library of people. We host events where readers can borrow human beings serving as open books and have conversations they would not normally have access to. Every human book from our bookshelf, represent a group in our society that is often subjected to prejudice, stigmatization or discrimination because of their lifestyle, diagnosis, belief, disability, social status, ethnic origin etc."

Open to: Staff
Date and time: 11 July 2023, 2:30–4:00pm
Online: link removed
Leicester Law School EDI committee event

5 July 2023

‘States and non-state actors in hegemonic and counter-hegemonic narratives in international law: the Nigerian experience’

Dr Joycelin Eze-Okubuiro (Leicester Law School)


Date and time: 5 July 2023, 1:00–2:00pm
Venue: Online
More information: eyo1@le.ac.uk
International Law Cluster

30 June 2023

New Perspectives on Trial by Media: A Free One-Day Online Workshop

This workshop will consider ‘trial by media’ to encourage new perspectives on the multifaceted interfaces between courts, media and justice.
Further information

5 June 2023

Research news May 2023 

  • Loveday Hodson and Kim Brayson were awarded prestigious Leverhulme Research Fellowships in April, for their respective projects on ‘Memory, Mourning, and the ECtHR’, and ‘Law and Islamic Dress: Rights and Fascism in Europe’
  • University Research Chairs for the 2023-24 academic year have been awarded to Katja Ziegler, and jointly Jose Miola and Tracey Elliott to focus on building research capacity in CELI and CREHL, research leadership and mentoring, and to focus on a large grant applications. 
  • Liz Wicks recently published the book, Suicide and the Law (2023, Bloomsbury), which provides a fascinating, wide-ranging and sophisticated analysis of the law’s relationship to issues of voluntary death.  
  • Ed Bates and Stephen Riley organised and successfully hosted a major event, with sponsorship from the Modern Law Review, on The Universal Declaration Of Human Rights: 75th Anniversary on Friday 28 April 2023 highlighting the research culture within Leicester Law School.

25-26 May 2023

Efforts to establish laws for space boosted by Ukraine partnerships

Pioneering work into establishing international co-operation in space activity is taking place at the University of Leicester, thanks to links established with academics in Ukraine in the wake of war.

25 May 2023

What Law Means to Me

Professor Kimberley Brayson, Inaugural Lecture

Using the first year law student assessment ‘What law means to me’ as a starting point, this lecture enacts critical, feminist, decolonial, theoretical perspectives in law to traverse the everyday effects of law and to introduce Critical Jurisprudence as a way of living law. 


Open to: All
Registration: Eventbrite 
Date and time: Thursday 25 May 2023, 5:30–6:30pm
Venue: Lecture Theatre 1, Bennett Building, University of Leicester, University Road Leicester, LE1 7RH
Contact: Professor Kimberley Brayson

19 May 2023

Former student and tutor Oliver Nunn has been awarded Barrister of the Year by the Leicestershire Law Society

Honorary professor Oliver Nunn, was awarded Barrister of the Year by the Leicestershire Law Society at an event on 19 May 2023.

The theme for the Awards this year was the future of law, reflecting Oliver’s passion for supporting students and improving equality, diversity and inclusion at the Bar. Along with Jamal Jeffers, Oliver established and finances the Jeffers Nunn Award for students from demographic groups under-represented at the Bar.

16 May 2023

‘The concept of Europe: Progress, colonial continuities, and the European Convention on Human Rights’, Dr Jens T Theilen

An analysis on the ‘concept of Europe’ in the "European" Convention on Human Rights, especially with regard to narratives of progress and colonial continuities.
Further information

4 May 2023

‘Migration & Race: Human Rights or Nation-Centred Justice?’ A public talk by Hiroshi Motomura

Public Talk by leading US immigration scholar Prof. Hiroshi Motomura entitled 'Migration and Race: Human Rights or Nation-Centred Justice?'
Further information

4 May 2023

Workshop with Prof. Hiroshi Motomura on his book project ‘Ethical Borders’

This is an opportunity to discuss the working draft of the current book project of leading US immigration law scholar Prof. Hiroshi Motomura
Further information

28 April 2023

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights’ 75th Anniversary Conference

A discussion of the progress made, and one still to be made, by the UK in the area of Human Rights. Further information

27 April 2023

CELI Annual Lecture 2023: Shamima Begum and the Future of British Citizenship

Prof. Matthew Gibney (University of Oxford) will be looking at the case of Shamina Begum and the prospects for security of British citizenship over the coming decade. Further information

8 March 2023

International Women’s Day screening of Prima Facie

Leicester Law School EDI committee

On International Women’s Day, students and staff are warmly invited by Reel Law to a screening of the National Theatre’s production of Prima Facie, a one-woman show starring Jodie Comer.

Tessa is a thoroughbred. A young, brilliant barrister who loves to win. She has worked her way up from working class origins to be at the top of her game; defending; cross examining and lighting up the shadows of doubt in any case. An unexpected event forces her to confront the lines where the patriarchal power of the law, burden of proof and morals diverge.
This is an excellent and challenging production that you don’t want to miss.

After the screening, staff and students will be invited to return to the Law School for a discussion of the film led by Loveday and a drink reception.


Open to: All
Date and time: 8 March 2023, 4:00pm, running time is approximately two hours
Venue: Attenborough Film Theatre

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