Professor Jones gained her undergraduate and Masters’ qualifications from the University of Cambridge. She began her PhD under the supervision of Anthony Giddens at the Department of Social & Political Sciences, Cambridge, but completed it under the supervision of Dr. Doreen McBarnet at the Centre of Socio-Legal Studies, Oxford.
After a spell teaching in various state comprehensive schools, Professor Jones returned to academia as a Research Fellow at the University of Edinburgh, Faculty of Law, where she taught the Masters in Criminology, and the undergraduate Legal Process course. At the same time, she undertook a number of funded research projects for the Scottish Government, the Scottish Consumer Council, and the Scottish Council for Civil Liberties. Professor Jones has since worked at a number of institutions, including the University of Hong Kong, the University of Cardiff, the City University Hong Kong, the Australian National University, and the American Bar Foundation.
At the University of Hong Kong Professor Jones developed a Masters in Public Order and taught on the Master’s course in Criminology, whilst also advising on a number of empirical research projects. These included the issue of court delay as well as a ‘paths to justice’ Hong Kong study. Her path-breaking work on the male-only ‘small houses’ policy in the New Territories formed an important part of the Hong Kong Council of Women’s submission to the UN on women’s rights in the territory, leading to heated social mobilisation around this issue.
Whilst in Hong Kong, Professor Jones also undertook research for Save the Children Fund (on female infanticide in China). She was one of the first academics to study the post-Mao development of the legal profession in China. She has continued to undertake empirical research in China on the legal profession and the Chinese criminal justice system. At the City University of Hong Kong, she chaired a Committee on the Reform of Legal Education in Hong Kong and presented evidence on the issue to the Hong Kong Legislative Council.