Since the late 1960s the Institute of Judicial Administration has been dedicated to researching the realities of our justice system. The concept "judicial administration" has a broad reach covering more theoretical and highly practical matters which impact upon decision making in our justice systems. Our work is also informed by the knowledge that judicial work and that impacting upon it, is carried out at many levels of the justice system and not only by judges.

The Institute serves as an incubator and host for collaborative research projects, hosts visiting scholars and runs conferences and workshops as well as the Criminal Law, Evidence and Justice Discussion Group.

Our Primary Areas of Interest:

Criminal Law, Evidence and Justice Discussion Group

Convened by Dr Samantha Fairclough, this group provides a forum for the many criminal justice researchers of the School to exchange ideas and receive feedback on their papers.

We are a diverse group including members with an interest in particular groups or processes:

  • Samantha Fairclough has undertaken socio-legal research into the vulnerable in Crown Courts, Laura Ford is researching death-penalty related issues, Theresa Lynch specialises in anti-social behaviour orders and Emma Oakley’s interest pertains to practitioner decision-making.
  • Whilst others criminal justice work centres more strongly around the substantive law: Adrian Hunt (counter-terrorism).

And other work within the Group focuses more upon the interaction of criminal justice and other factors:

  • Carol Jones has a particular interest on post-colonial structures and globalisation, Milena Tripkovic’s work centres on citizenship and Ben Warwick focuses upon social and economic rights.
  • Richard Young has written on a large number of features of the criminal process, with policing, victimisation and legal aid particular foci. John Baldwin similarly has an extensive body of work with prosecution processes, plea negotiation and police interrogation forming major parts.

The members whose work is described under the multi-level criminal justice group  also belong to this group.

The Group meets three times a semester.

The discussion group also welcomes proposals for papers from external academics and practitioners working broadly in these areas. For more information contact Dr Samantha Fairclough (s.fairclough@bham.ac.uk)

Publications

  • S. Fairclough, ‘“It doesn’t happen ... and I’ve never thought it was necessary for it to happen”: Barriers to vulnerable defendants giving evidence by live link in Crown Court trials’ (2017) 21(3) International Journal of Evidence and Proof 209
  • S. Fairclough and I. Jones, ‘The Victim in Court’ in S. Walklate (ed.) Victims and Victimology (2nd edn., Routledge 2017) 211-228
  • S. Fairclough, ‘The Vulnerable in Court: The Use of Live Link and Screens’ (2017) Birmingham Law School Research Spotlight, University of Birmingham
  • S. Fairclough, ‘Speaking up for Injustice: Reconsidering the provision of special measures through the lens of equality’ (2018) Criminal Law Review (forthcoming)

Multi-Level Criminal Justice Systems

Although classically bound to the sovereign territory of nation states, criminal justice is increasingly being delivered (or assisted in its delivery) at a supra-national level, where overriding interests of humanity are concerned or sufficiently serious offences are involved.

A number of our researchers engage with the issues surrounding these phenomena:

  • Janine Natalya Clark focuses particularly on transitional justice and sexual violence in conflict. She is exploring resilience in survivors of sexual violence in a major new comparative study.  
  • Robert Cryer writes on many aspects of international criminal justice.
  • Seb Eskauriatza is exploring the practical usefulness of the jus post bellum concept. The jus post bellum has been proposed as 'emerging' international law that governs the termination of armed conflicts. He is interested in whether it helps post-conflict actors to implement peace agreements in relation to transitional criminal justice.
  • Maureen Mapp researches contextual sentencing looking at the translation of localised traditional norms and practices into national formal sentencing procedures using an expanded notion of the right to be heard on sentence.
  • Marianne Wade researches EU criminal law and justice with a particular interest in ensuring the transportability of rights alongside that of punitive measures.

Members of this group recently contributed to the Criminal Justice Reform in Comparative Perspective Workshop hosted by the IJA. 

Publications

  • Janine Natalya Clark, Rape, Sexual Violence and Transitional Justice Challenges: Lessons from Bosnia-Herzegovina (Abingdon: Routledge, 2017). 
  • Janine Natalya Clark, ‘The Vulnerability of the Penis: Sexual Violence against Men in Conflict and Security Frames’, Men and Masculinities (published online at http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1097184X17724487).
  • Janine Natalya Clark, ‘Masculinity and Male Survivors of Wartime Sexual Violence: A Bosnian Case Study’, Conflict, Security and Development 17 (2017): 287–311.
  •  Janine Natalya Clark, ‘Working with Survivors of War Rape and Sexual Violence: Fieldwork Reflections from Bosnia-Hercegovina’, Qualitative Research 17 (2017): 424–439. 
  • Janine Natalya Clark,  ‘Untangling Rape Causation and the Importance of the Micro Level: Elucidating the Use of Mass Rape during the Bosnian War, Ethnopolitics 16 (2017): 388–410. 
  • Robert Cryer (2016) International Criminal Law and Daesh, https://blog.oup.com/2016/04/international-criminal-law-and-daesh/
  • Robert Cryer, Elizabeth Wilmshurst, Håkan Friman and Darryl Robinson An Introduction to International Criminal Law and Procedure (Cambridge: CUP, 3rd ed., 2014)(2nd ed., 2010, 1st ed.. 2007) 616pp +lxxxvii ISBN 978-1-107-06590-1(hb) ISBN 978-1-107-69883-3 (pb). 
  • Robert Cryer ‘The Future of Global Transational Criminality and International Criminal Justice’ in M. Cherif Bassiouni (ed.) The Future of International Criminal Justice (forthcoming, 2015).
  • Marianne Wade "Developing a Criminal Justice System for the European Union” European Parliament, 2014

Holding Power to Account

A number of our members work on the judiciary (to be completed after discussion with relevant colleagues)

Anthony Arnull has broad expertise relating to the CJEU

As part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the IJA, a conference on “Judges under Fire” is planned to examine the animosity currently directed at the judiciary such as after the Miller case and towards particularly the Court of Justice of the European Union and the European Court of Human Rights.

Counter-Terrorism

Counter-terrorist law and policy has been the subject of controversy for decades in the UK also sparking a strong judicial stand in more recent years. Several of our members engage deeply in research in this area. 

BLS features a wealth of human rights expertise in this area with Adrian Hunt’s research pertaining to the expansion of criminal liability perpetuated by counter terrorist law as well as special procedures justified by it. Natasa Mavronicola is currently working on torture, human dignity, and othering in the intersection between counter-terrorism and human rights. From a criminal justice based perspective, Marianne Wade’s work focuses pertains to the role of the EU as a counter-terrorism actor. 

Members of this group recently contributed to the Criminal Justice Reform in Comparative Perspective Workshop hosted by the IJA.

In 2017 we hosted a Distinguished Visiting Fulbright Chair.

Projects currently being developed pertain to:

  • Schedule 7 Powers
  • The effect of police culture on the delivery of counter-terrorist policy. Within the framework of the 50th anniversary celebrations, an event will be held on this topic.

Publications

  • N. Mavronicola, ‘Torture and Othering’ in Goold and Lazarus, Security and Human Rights  (second edition) in press.
  • N. Mavronicola, ‘Taking Life and Liberty Seriously: Reconsidering Criminal Liability under Article 2 of the ECHR’ (2017) Modern Law Review (forthcoming)

Power and the People

We are concerned that legal research can often orient itself to fundamentals we take for granted, ought, however, not to. Law and institutions enforcing them can become so ingrained in our minds, that we forget they are a product of specific decision-making. In this discussion group, we aim to ensure we assume fresh perspectives on our work recognising that law itself is an expression of power, written by the powerful, representing their perspective, to serve their ends.

  • Robert Cryer’s work for example questions whether the norms regarded as fundamentals of international criminal justice are in fact such or just those distilled from the Nuremberg (and not other) tribunals.
  • Mohammad Shahabuddin takes a post-colonial approach to international law cautioning against the validity of its western dominated assumptions. Like Hakeem Yusuf’s examination of transitional justice and post-colonial settings, his work raises concerns that international and other legal systems can be established in a way which dooms differently structured societies and systems to failure or casts their traditional mechanisms out due to their differences.
  • Marianne Wade is particularly interested in the uneven application of labels such as terrorist but also foreign fighter and its legal consequences. The differing treatment of girls recruited as “jihadi brides” and those groomed for domestic sexual exploitation is a further point of interest. 
  • However, whilst we are acutely aware that law and those enforcing them – like judges – can be decisive actors in the exercise of power (legitimate or not), we are horrified at attempts to place individuals outside the protection of the law in so-called black sites and Guantanamo Bay.
  • Emma Marchant’s work examines another aspect of this worrying trend examining the extraterritorial use of drones in targeting and the decision making behind such.

Publications

Modern Slavery

  • Maria Anna Corvaglia focuses upon the protection of social-environmental concerns in international economic law with a particular interest in decent working conditions.
  • Marianne Wade has published on trafficking human beings and is particularly interested in ways of making regulation effective and workable.

We are currently preparing a funding bid with colleagues across campus (within the Centre for Crime, Justice and Policing) to examine possibilities to regulate supply chains better to protect workers globally. 

PhDs supervised on the topic include “Identifying victims of trafficking human beings in the UK”

Corruption and Compliance

The prevalence of corruption undermining justice systems, facilitating and indeed sometimes driving crime is a concern which informs a number of our members’ work.

  • Maria Anna Corvaglia focuses upon the protection of social-environmental concerns in international economic law.
  • Carol Jones’ expertise covers anti-corruption mechanisms in Hong Kong and China.
  • Hakeem Yusuf’s work explores corruption as a factor in transitional and transnational settings.

Members of this group recently contributed to the Criminal Justice Reform in Comparative Perspective Workshop hosted by the IJA.

Other regular group activities:

Criminal Law, Evidence and Justice Discussion Group convenes three times a semester to discuss on-going work of members. 

The IJA hosts visiting scholars:

  • Distinguished Fulbright Chair – Professor Erik Luna - Erik completed research on counter-terrorism and suspect communities.
  • Alexander von Humboldt Scholar – Professor Anna Albrecht - Anna undertook comparative research to investigate interdependencies between European criminal procedure standards and national legal orders with the British and German systems as her points of reference.
  • Sabela Oubina Barbolla - Sabela undertook work relating to counter-terrorism and comparative criminal procedure particularly relating to judges.
  • Angello Marletta - Angelo researched specific aspects of the European Arrest Warrant as transposed and practiced in the UK. 

Major group events or activities or news:

Website: