This project brings together researchers from law, philosophy and neuroscience to explore criminal blame for conduct that leads to accidental or mistaken harms. For example, where an intoxicated defendant accidentally damages property, or harms a person in the mistaken belief that self-defence was necessary, to what extent (and how) should their choice to become intoxicated effect our judgements of blame? Prior-fault rules, creating liability in these circumstances, can be found across most criminal law jurisdictions; but have been widely criticised for their over-criminalising effects.
The project is run in collaboration with the Sentencing Council for England and Wales, Australian Law Reform Commission, New South Wales Law Reform Commission, South Australian Law Reform Institute, Tasmania Law Reform Institute, Jersey Law Commission, Law Reform Commission of Hong Kong, New Jersey Law Reform Commission, Scottish Law Commission, as well as several less formal collaborations beyond this.
This research is supported by the British Academy’s Knowledge Frontiers: International Interdisciplinary Research Projects 2019.