Professor Fiona de Londras

Professor Fiona de Londras

Birmingham Law School
Chair of Global Legal Studies

Contact details

Birmingham Law School
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Fiona de Londas is Professor of Global Legal Studies at Birmingham Law School. her research concerns constitutionalism, human rights, and transnationalism. She is particularly interested in the role and function of rights in contentious policy fields, inquiring into how (if at all) rights shape the making of law and policy in complex contexts of, for example, counter-terrorism, reproductive rights, government and parliamentary responses to COVID-19, and the implementation of international legal standards. Professor de Londras undertakes this through her academic scholarship, public engagement, and advisory work. Her most recent book is The Practice and Problems of Transnational Counter-Terrorism, published by Cambridge University Press in 2022.

Professor de Londras is an editor of the Human Rights Law Review and former editor of the Irish Yearbook of International Law and Legal Studies. She is an Honorary Professor at the Australian National University, a member of the Executive Committee of the Society of Legal Scholars, an affiliate of the Oxford Human Rights Hub, and a Senior Associate of the Global Justice Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy in the University of Toronto. In 2017 she was awarded the Philip Leverhulme Prize in Law. This is supporting her research agenda until the end of 2023. 


  • BCL (NUI)
  • LLM (NUI)
  • PhD (NUI)


I joined Birmingham Law School in 2015 as the inaugural Professor of Global Legal Studies. Since joining Birmingham, I have been Deputy Head of School (2016-2018) and Deputy Director of Research for the College of Arts and Law (2022-), as well as undertaking research funded by the British Academy, the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, the Arts and Humanities Research Council, and the Leverhulme Trust. I am an Honorary Professor at the Australian National University College of Law (2019-2025), and hold visiting positions at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy (University of Toronto) and Oxford Human Rights Hub (University of Oxford). In 2020 I was appointed an as a member of the law sub-panel for REF 2021 (outputs assessor). In 2017 I won the Philip Leverhulme Prize in Law.

My work is broadly concerned with whether, and if so how, rights shape law- and policymaking in contentious (or ‘hard’) policy areas. I usually adopt a socio-legal approach in my research, often combined with comparative and/or transnational approaches. While my earlier work was predominantly concerned with counterterrorism, I now focus mostly on researching abortion with a particular concentration on the integration of rights and rights-discourses in law and policy debates on the regulation of abortion. Complementing my scholarly work, I undertake commissioned research and policy work for politicians, government departments, and international organisations, and regularly appear in national and international media.

I am now editor of the Human Rights Law Review (OUP) and previously edited Legal Studies and the Irish Yearbook of International Law. I am a member of the Executive Committee and EDI Committee of the Society of Legal Scholars, and of the AHRC peer review college.

Before joining Birmingham, I was a professor of law in Durham, and prior to that I held posts as a lecturer in University College Dublin and University College Cork. At that time, my research was funded by the European Commission and National University of Ireland.


Due to her Philip Leverhulme Prize Professor de Londras is not currently engaged in undergraduate or postgraduate teaching in the School. However, students who wish to discuss her or their research are invited to visit her (Room 146) and/or to contact her by email.

Postgraduate supervision

Professor de Londras currently supervises students working on (national, comparative, and international) public law and on topics as diverse as the conceptualisation of security in law, the future of the ECtHR, postcoloniality and nationality law, migrants' rights, and the regulation of abortion information. Her former doctoral students now hold academic posts at leading law schools around the world, in practice, and in regulatory and policy bodies. She has a strong track record of supporting doctoral students in securing funding from the AHRC, Irish Research Council, and the NUI Travelling Studentship fund as well as their own national governments and the University of Birmingham.

At this time a substantial number of Professor de Londras' students are completing their doctoral work and she has some capacity to welcome new doctoral candidates in the 2023-24 academic year. She would be pleased to hear from exceptional students with outline research proposals who are interested in undertaking work on:

The European Court of Human Rights
Counter-terrorism/security, transnationalism, and human rights
Comparative constitutional law
Abortion law reform

Find out more - our PhD Law  page has information about doctoral research at the University of Birmingham.


Professor de Londras’ work is fundamentally concerned with the role, impact and operation of constitutionalism and rights in 'complex' policy areas (i.e. areas in respect of which there are no 'right answers'). In exploring these matters, her work concentrates broadly on terrorism/security and the law, (comparative) constitutional law, human rights law, and gender and the law. Inevitably these themes sometimes overlap; much of her work on human rights law for example has taken place in, or develops further the work that Professor de Londras has done in the security/counter-terrorism context. Prof. de Londras’ work strives to consider law in context, sometimes incorporating empirical work including interviews, focus groups, and thematic analysis of large corpora (e.g. parliamentary debates).



Highlight publications

De Londras, F 2022, The practice and problems of transnational counter-terrorism. Cambridge Studies in Law and Society, Cambridge University Press.

Grez Hidalgo, P, de Londras, F & Lock, D 2022, 'Parliament, the pandemic, and constitutional principle in the United Kingdom: a study of the Coronavirus Act 2020', Modern Law Review. <>

De Londras, F, Blackbourn, J & Morgan, L 2019, Accountability and Review in the Counter-Terrorist State. Bristol University Press.

De Londras, F & Enright, M 2018, Repealing the 8th: Reforming Abortion Law in Ireland. Policy Press Shorts, Policy Press. <>

Recent publications


Lock, D, de Londras, F & Grez, P 2023, 'Delegated Legislation in the Pandemic: Further Limits of a Constitutional Bargain Revealed', Legal Studies. <>

de Londras, F, Cleeve, A, Furgalska , M, Farrell, A, Rodriguez, M & Lavelanet, A 2023, 'The Impact of Third-Party Authorization Requirements on Abortion-Related Outcomes: A Synthesis of Legal and Health Evidence', BMC Public Health. <>

De Londras, F, Cleeve, A, Rodriguez, M, Farrell, A, Furgalska , M & Lavelanet, A 2023, 'The impact of ‘conscientious objection’ on abortion-related outcomes: a synthesis of legal and health evidence', Health Policy, vol. 129, 104716.

de Londras, F, Grez Hidalgo, P & Lock, D 2022, 'Rights and parliamentary oversight in the pandemic: reflections from the Scottish Parliament', Public Law, pp. 582.

Furgalska, M & De Londras, F 2022, 'Rights, Lawfare and Reproduction: Reflections on the Polish Constitutional Tribunal's Abortion Decision', Israel Law Review, pp. 1-17.

de Londras, F, Cleeve, A, Rodriguez, M, Farrell, A, Furgalska, M & Lavelanet, A 2022, 'The impact of criminalisation on abortion-related outcomes: a synthesis of legal and health evidence: a synthesis of legal and health evidence', BMJ Global Health, vol. 7, no. 12, e010409.

de Londras, F, Cleeve, A, Rodriguez, M, Farrell, A, Furgalska , M & Lavelanet, A 2022, 'The impact of mandatory waiting periods on abortion-related outcomes: a synthesis of legal and health evidence', BMC Public Health, vol. 22, no. 1, 1232 .

De Londras, F, Cleeve, A, Rodriguez, M, Farrell, A, Furgalska, M & Lavelanet, A 2022, 'The impact of provider restrictions on abortion-related outcomes: a synthesis of legal and health evidence', Reproductive Health, vol. 19, no. 95, 95.

de Londras, F, Cleeve, A, Rodriguez, M & Lavelanet, A 2022, 'The impact of ‘grounds’ on abortion-related outcomes: a synthesis of legal and health evidence', BMC Public Health, vol. 22, no. 1, 936. <>

Floyd, R, Loader, I, Wolfendale , J, De Londras, F & Roe , P 2022, 'The morality of security: A theory of just securitisation', European Journal of International Security , vol. 7, no. 2, pp. 248-282.

De Londras, F, Cleeve, A, Rodriguez, M & Lavelanet, A 2021, 'Integrating rights and evidence: a technical advance in abortion guideline development', BMJ Global Health, vol. 6, no. 2, e004141.

De Londras, F 2021, 'Nation-making and re-making: a response to Brice Dickson, ‘The protection of human rights in a United Ireland’', Irish Studies in International Affairs, vol. 32, no. 2, pp. 620-622 .


de Londras, F 2023, Abortion, reform, and rights: tales from a small island. in M Ziegler (ed.), Research Handbook on International Abortion Law. Research Handbooks in Law and Society, Edward Elgar Publishing Ltd.


de Londras, F, Grez, P & Lock, D 2022, 'Use of the made affirmative procedure in Scotland: reflections from the pandemic', Edinburgh Law Review, vol. 26, no. 2, pp. 219-227.

Other contribution

De Londras, F, Fredman, S, Rubio Marin, R, Sheldon, S, Cali, B, Scott, R & Jackson, E 2021, No. 19-1392 Dobbs v Jackson Women's Health Organization: brief of European Law Professors as amici curiae in support of respondents. Wilson-Epes Printing Co., Inc. . <>

View all publications in research portal


counter-terrorism, security, European law, human rights, abortion and reproductive justice

Media experience

Extensive media experience including television (incl. BBC, RTE, ITV, Channel 4), radio (BBC (national and regional), RTE, Newstalk, ABC), expert contributions to news stories (incl. New York Times, Sidney Morning Herald, Straits Times) and opinion editorials (incl. Guardian, Independent, Irish Times).


  • Reforming abortion law in Ireland
  • Counter-terrorism/anti-terror law
  • Constitutionalism
  • Human rights (including international)
  • Brexit

Policy experience

Experienced in consultation for NGOs, civil society, international institutions, and individual politicians.