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City University, London

UOA 38 - Law

RA5a: Research environment and esteem

RA5a RESEARCH ENVIRONMENT & ESTEEM

A.        THE RESEARCH ENVIRONMENT


Legal Research at City Law School takes place within the Department of Law. The School’s other department, the Inns of Court School of Law (“ICSL”), incorporated into the University in 2001, delivers vocational programmes. Staff there are not required to do academic research but instead undertake scholarly activity relating to course development and outreach to the professions. 

 

This return therefore relates to the Department of Law which, although small, is highly research active. A strong research culture prevails and the Department has been successful both in attracting and retaining established researchers with an excellent existing publication record and in nurturing talented early career researchers such as Collins, Elvin and Hatzis. 

(a)   Responsibility for research management and governance

The Director of Research, a member of the Departmental Executive, promotes and manages research and chairs the Research Committee which includes both ex-officio and elected members. The Committee debates and sets research policy and acts as the research ethics committee. Research governance, including oversight of the progress of research students, and decision-making on applications for sabbatical are dealt with by the School’s Board of Studies, chaired by the Dean.

(b) Creating a stimulating environment

One of the Department’s main aims has been to sustain a strong research culture by providing the time, collegial support and facilities necessary to enable first-class research to be undertaken. This mirrors the University's Research Strategy which sees research as being at the heart of the University‚ and aims to develop and facilitate research of excellence. Support for research at Institutional level is significant including University-wide research studentship and fellowship schemes, and a University development fund to supplement departmental research funding.

The Department is a tightly-knit unit, enabling less experienced colleagues to benefit from mentoring by senior researchers (see C(d)). A successful research environment is encouraged by measures creating a stimulating intellectual climate. Lunch-time research seminars (for staff and postgraduate students) take place on a fortnightly basis in term-time, at which staff, research students or external researchers give papers on their current research work. Recent examples include papers on “The proper basis of restitution in corporate litigation”, “Corporate social responsibility and transparency in the development of energy and mining projects in emerging markets: Is soft law the answer?”, “Energy security, free markets, antitrust and the Kremlin”, “The Compensation Culture – What Crisis?”, “Modernisation of Article 82 EC”, and “Researching the Law of Government Commerce.” During the intervening weeks the Department hosts evening forums (open to staff and students alike) at which the role of lawyers and law in particular contexts are discussed by visiting speakers. These events are in addition to an established programme of half-day research seminars organised at Institutional level which take up themes of broad interest. The School also hosts events open to external scholars, students and practitioners. Recent events hosted include, for example, the London Legal History Seminar on the notorious incident involving the slave ship The Zong (“The Zong: Legal, Social and Historical Dimension” a seminar organised in anticipation of  the bicentenary of the abolition of the slave trade);  a major conference on Housing Law; a Conference on “Homicide – Reform and Codification in England and Wales and France” (jointly organised with the Franco-British Lawyers Society), two seminars of the Competition Law Scholars’ Forum and an international conference on “Story-telling in advocacy”.

B         RESEARCH STRUCTURE

The following indicate that the Department’s research environment will continue to sustain a high level and quality of research activity.

(a) and (b) Research Support

The Department affords its staff a high quality research infrastructure including all the library and information resources that one would expect (including Westlaw, Lexis Academic, Lexis-Nexis Professional, Justis, and the British Company Law Library) as well as links to numerous authoritative and official websites. To enhance the quality of the library the Department supplements the central allocation for library resources by an additional £30,000 p.a. and subscribes for its staff and postgraduate students for access to the library at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. The facilities of the British Library are also locally available.

The Department provides staff and research students with financial support for attendance at academic conferences, nationally and internationally, and for the purchase of books and equipment and other research assistance. Although we ensure that such funding is applied for proper and effective research purposes no application has been declined during the current RAE period on the basis of lack of resources. The Department also operates a sabbatical policy to support research activity, described at C (c) below.

(c) Effectiveness of support for research students and early career researchers

The effectiveness of the mentoring and support mechanism noted above for early career researchers is evidenced by the fact that a number of colleagues who were relatively new to research at the outset of the assessment period are now established researchers in their own right and current early career researchers have produced published work included in this Return and are developing external profiles. Thus, for example, Collins has been appointed as Visiting Fellow at the Georgetown University and Case Note Editor of the Manchester Journal of International Economic Law and Hatzis has been appointed on leave of absence to be a referendaire at the European Court of Justice. Early career researchers are particularly encouraged to take up the conference funding mentioned above and two of the three have, for example, been funded to attend international conferences since taking up their posts.

A selective approach is taken to recruitment of research students in order to ensure that they receive high quality supervision and all appropriate facilities. The University makes available to research students a comprehensive research studies handbook at the point of registration. This was commended by the QAA for its clarity and comprehensiveness during the Institutional Audit in 2004-05. Research supervision within the Department operates within a University-wide scheme and the roles of supervisors and students are clearly documented.

Research students are each allocated shared office accommodation and a networked PC. In 2007 £25,000 was spent on upgrading this accommodation.

In addition to regular contact with their supervisors, research students are encouraged to attend the Department’s programme of research events and to present their own research as part of that programme. They also have access to a training programme at University level and are encouraged to participate in the University Society of Research Students in order to take advantage of cross-University opportunities and to broaden their social and academic networks.

Training for research supervisors is provided at institutional level and ranges from practically-focused one-day training sessions to a new module on research supervision developed by the University's Centre for Educational and Academic Practices as part of its MA in Academic Practice, introduced from 2006. The provision of research supervision by teams of supervisors is also encouraged in line with the revised QAA Code of Practice which means that less experienced supervisors gain experience through working with more experienced researchers in such teams.

 

An annual report on each research student's progress is undertaken by the supervisor with the outcomes monitored by the Board of Studies. The latter also undertakes an annual review of the research programmes within its remit, providing a report to the Academic Practice, Programmes and Standards Committee. Research students are surveyed annually for their feedback. Completion rates are monitored at University level. In addition to the award listed in RA3a, a further PhD viva was held in August 2007, resulting in a successful outcome. A further student is transferring to writing-up status.

(d) Arrangements to support interdisciplinary/collaborative research

The Department continues to adopt a pluralistic approach to research and does not direct members of staff to work in any specific field or tradition. The policy is to play to the strengths of the staff while also encouraging collaboration with others.

 

 

(e) Relationships with research users

 

The Department maintains strong relationships with users of its research. Leading practitioners are associated with the Department through membership of the Advisory Board, chaired by Mr Justice Etherton (Chair of the Law Commission) which includes a representative from each of the Inns of Court, together with a number of distinguished solicitors. The strength of the Department’s relations with users is indicated by the following: 

 

Citation by the Courts

 

Work published by researchers in the Department is regularly cited by the Courts. See section E for specific examples. 

 

Engagement with policy-makers

 

Our research-based expertise is regularly called upon by users in the policy field including during the current period:

 

         The House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution: Loveland, expert evidence to the Committee;

         The European Parliament: Riley, expert evidence on energy security and appointed as adviser on energy security to its Energy Committee;

         The Council of Europe: Riley, expert evidence by invitation to the Council’s Energy Security Hearings;

         The NATO Atlantic Committee: Riley, invited speaker on energy market liberalisation to the Committee’s meeting on Energy Security in Oslo;

         The German Marshall Fund: Riley, gave a paper on energy security by invitation of the Fund;

         The Baltic Energy Security Group, (an inter-governmental body set up by the Baltic states as a forum for development of energy policy): Riley, a member of the Group appointed by the President of Lithuania;

         The OECD: Kunzlik, twice an OECD consultant on “green procurement”;

         The European Commission, D-G Environment: Kunzlik, a principal researcher on a research contract concerning transposition of the Groundwater Directive;

         The Crown Prosecution Service: Kunzlik, a principal researcher on a research contract on the quality of prosecution advocacy;

         The Law Society’s Committee on Planning and Environmental Law: Purdue, a member of the Committee;

         The Council for the Protection of Rural England: Purdue, a member of a team commissioned by the CPRE to research third-party rights of appeal in planning;

         The International Law Association: Reece-Thomas, member of the Association’s research committee;

         Transparency International/Sir Hayden Philips’ Enquiry into Political Party Funding: Wilsher, the joint author of a report for Transparency International which was submitted to Sir Hayden Philips’ Enquiry;

The profession, NGOs and public comment

 

Loveland and Kunzlik are academic members of barristers’ chambers, and Collins is a consultant to a Canadian law firm. Several colleagues have contributed their research-based expertise to a range of bodies concerned with the law including in the current period: 

 

         Environmental Law Foundation: Purdue gave a paper on “Public Participation” in environmental law;

         Harcourt Chambers: Purdue gave a paper on “Enforcement of Planning law”; 

         BT: Purdue gave a paper on “Planning and Telecommunications Law”; 

         Wall Street Journal: Riley regularly contributes articles on European competition law issues and has had 10 opinion articles published since 2004;  

         ILPA/Justice: Wilsher gave a paper at the ILPA/Justice Conference on Migration (2005); 

         Medicins Sans Frontieres: Wilsher advised MSF on the legal rights of migrants to healthcare (2002);

         Bail for Immigration Detainees (an NGO): Wilsher advised Bail on the rights of detained immigrants (2004);

         Judiciary: Wilsher’s expertise as a scholar of immigration law is reflected in his appointment as a part-time immigration judge (2007);

         Achilles public procurement database (the primary on-line information resource for procurement practitioners): Kunzlik, a member of the Advisory Board;

         “White Paper” Procurement Professionals’ Conference: Kunzlik chaired and acted as discussant at a leading conference for procurement professionals on the application of EC Public Procurement Rules to Major Projects;

         BedfordRow Chambers: Kunzlik gave a paper on “The Carter and Clementi Reports”;

         Pinsents, solicitors: Kunzlik gave a paper on “Transatlantic Aspects of Cartel Investigations”.

 

 (f) Strategic management of research careers

The Department seeks to recruit appropriately at all levels of experience and research development is a key element in informal mentoring and guidance. Academic colleagues and research students are advised on both developing their research profiles and the role that their research will play in the further development of their careers within the Department and/or externally.

Explicit account is taken of research quality and productivity and of future research plans in individual annual appraisals or probationary reviews, and in salary reviews and promotions. Research is a key criterion for promotion within the Department reflecting its place in the University’s promotions criteria (see C(b)).

C         STAFFING POLICY

As indicated, the Department recruits at all levels of experience, favouring in the case of early career researchers those with PhDs or with professional qualifications and postgraduate degrees involving a substantial research element.

For the last two years, as well as maintaining the success of its established courses, the Department has been developing a new LLM programme in international commercial law which will allow staff to align their research interests in that field with new teaching opportunities. As the programme grows the Department expects to recruit further staff having research interests in aspects of commercial law. The appointment of a Reader (Riley, subsequently promoted to Professor) specialising in competition law was the first step in this regard.

(a)   Facilitating research in conjunction with other duties

The Department organises its teaching according to an annual “contract” which allocates teaching to each member of staff according to a formula which allows substantial research time to active researchers. Every effort is made to ensure that each researcher has a concentrated period each week (at least a clear day) free from teaching commitments and that, wherever possible, staff will be teaching in the field of their research expertise. Every member of staff is expected to be research active except exceptionally where family or other personal circumstances, or the weight of managerial duties, temporarily dictate otherwise. When such special circumstances cease to operate the agreement of annual research programmes allows the individual in question to be supported back into research activity.

(b) Measures to promote equality of opportunity in the context of research

Equal opportunities policies are elaborated at institutional level and are applied by the Department as regards its research activity and generally. These include policies on Equality & Diversity; Equitable Treatment for Fixed-Term Staff; Maternity, Paternity and Adoption; Race and Equality; and on Equal Opportunities aspects of the RAE itself.  The Department provides access to sabbaticals (see (c) below), financial and other support for research activities without regard to gender, race, age, or sexual orientation. The same is true of promotion, considered by means of an annual round pursuant to the institution’s equality and promotions policies on the basis of the University’s published criteria, key amongst which is research performance, but also including performance in academic administration, teaching and external activities. During this RAE period there have been eight internal academic promotions in the Department, four female and four male members of staff being promoted.   

(c) Sabbaticals

The Department operates a sabbatical term scheme within the University sabbatical policy allowing each member of academic staff to take one term of study leave in every seven terms of service. This scheme was adopted in order, in particular, to allow early career researchers to become entitled to study leave more quickly. Applications are subject to approval by the Board of Studies and must embody well-defined research goals. After sabbatical leave the member of staff concerned presents a formal report to the Board of Studies. In the period since the last RAE ten current members of staff within the Department have taken study leave, five female and five male. This included colleagues at lecturer, senior lecturer, reader and professorial level equally.

(d) Developing the research of less experienced researchers

The Department seeks to develop its less experienced researchers and to integrate them within a wider, supportive research culture through a number of means. They are the focus of support by the Director of Research and of informal mentoring by senior colleagues. They are especially encouraged to participate in internal research seminars and to attend appropriate conferences and seminars both relating to their own research fields and to generic training for different traditions of legal research. The Department’s research seminar programme has included seminars led by individuals at all stages of experience from PhD students to professors.

Furthermore, collaboration between staff, and with external scholars, has been encouraged as a means to help develop less experienced researchers. This culture is reflected in the Department’s output. During the current period, for example, the following colleagues have produced jointly authored work, their collaborators being indicated in brackets: de Than (Shorts and Elliott), Gale (Scanlan and McGee), Scanlan (Gale, Prime and McGee), Purdue (Paradissis), Small (Reece-Thomas and Grant). In addition, Kunzlik has mentored two early career researchers (Collins and Hatzis) and a third colleague (Wilsher) as regards developing their interests in public procurement law. As a result Hatzis and Wilsher presented papers at the Nottingham University/Georgetown University “Continuing Revolution” Conference in 2006. Publication by C.U.P. of a book based on the conference and including their contributions is pending. Collins is also developing an interest in this field and has a chapter pending in a further publication on government procurement under the WTO Government Procurement Agreement.

(e) The effect of departures of Category B staff

The tragic death of Prof. Martin Dockray in 2005 deprived the Department of his expertise in the fields of legal history and maritime law. These were not, however, fields in which other members of staff had generally pursued research. Margaret Halliwell (an Equity scholar) retired in 2006. The senior staff in the Department have been supplemented through the recruitment of a new Professor (Kunzlik) and Reader (Riley, subsequently promoted to Professor) and the promotion of Reece-Thomas to be Deputy Head of Department working in conjunction with the Head, Professor Ryan.

 

(f) Effect of the demographic profile of the Department

The age profile of the Department is as follows:-

Age brackets (years)

31-35             36-40              41-45              46-50              51-55              55-60              60+      

3M                   1F                   3F, 2M            2F, 4M           3M                   1M                  1M

F = female, M = male

Those in the older age brackets (51 plus) are all male; as the more senior members of that cohort move to retirement the Department will progressively develop a broadly balanced profile between the genders in all age ranges. In the age brackets between 41 and 50, male and female are represented almost equally (5 female and 6 male). The Department is currently in the process of making up to two professorial appointments and the two candidates on the final short-list are both female. At the younger end of the age profile we expect further recruitment of younger staff to produce a more gender balanced profile in the near future.

The demographic profile of the Department also affects the current and future management of research activity in two principal ways. First, it creates an opportunity to develop a number of early career and other less experienced researchers of great potential. Second, as some senior colleagues have entered or are approaching their sixties there will be a need to further strengthen academic leadership within the Department over the next few years by the promotion of current staff and/or recruitment at readership or professorial level. This is one of the features which lies behind the Department’s on-going recruitment process to appoint up to two new professors.

D         RESEARCH STRATEGY

The Department’s research strategy as stated in the 2001 RAE was “to continue its policy of encouraging individuals to pursue their own research strengths and interests, while at the same time building on its success in developing collaborative research.” This has been pursued with success over the seven years of the current period as evidenced by the quality of the works included in RA2 and the esteem factors enumerated below. In addition since 2005 the Department has embarked upon a period of growth and the opportunity has therefore arisen incrementally to increase the number of research students within the Department from one to five. We intend to maintain their numbers at approximately that level over the next few years. The upgrade of research student accommodation mentioned earlier was undertaken to accommodate this expansion.

Over the next five years our research objectives are to (i) develop the research activity of our staff at all levels of experience so that their work is sustained at or achieves the highest levels of excellence; (ii) ensure that wherever possible such research informs and is reinforced by each researcher’s teaching activity, especially as regards postgraduate courses; (iii) encourage the establishment of research working groups focusing on areas in which we already have significant strength and in which our portfolio of postgraduate courses is likely to develop, for example, corporate/commercial law, public law and, following the recent recruitment of senior staff in these fields, competition law and public procurement law; (iv) maintain the number of full-time postgraduate research students within the Department at about five; (v) host research-based events (such as conferences, roundtable discussions, seminars and/or workshops) especially in the fields of the emerging research working groups so as to inform  academic discourse, public policy and professional practice in those fields; (vi) attract external funding for research projects themselves, for research posts and bursaries and for the organisation of the events mentioned above; and (vii) establish international collaborations especially within the fields of the emerging working groups.

E.        ESTEEM

The high esteem in which our research is held is evidenced as follows:-

Invitations to contribute to national and international organisations

 

Several colleagues have contributed by invitation to the activities of important national and international organisations. During the current period Loveland  has given evidence by invitation to the House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution; Kunzlik has twice been appointed an expert consultant to the OECD as regards legal aspects of environmentally sensitive procurement; Purdue’s distinction in planning and environmental law has been recognised in his membership of the Law Society’s Committee on Planning and Environmental Law and of a team commissioned by the CPRE and allied NGOs to undertake research into “Third Party Rights of Appeal in Planning”; Reece-Thomas is a member of the research committee of the International Law Association; and Riley’s competition law expertise is recognised by the fact that he has been Chair of the Competition Law Scholars’ Forum (www.clasf.org) since 2002, has given evidence by invitation to the Council of Europe Energy Security Hearings and to the European Parliament, has given papers by invitation at Energy Security Conferences at Chatham House, the NATO Atlantic Committee Meeting on Energy Security in Oslo, the German Marshall Fund, Berlin, the Energy Security Conference (Vilnius) and the Irish Society of European Law (Dublin). He is an adviser to the Energy Committee of the European Parliament and an expert member of the Baltic Energy Security Group (appointed by the Lithuanian Government). De Than gave the annual Mansfield Law Society lecture for 2007 on ‘The inconsistency of consent in rape and other assault offences in criminal law’. 

 

Participation in leading conferences  

 

During the current period the Department’s researchers delivered papers by invitation, or chaired conference panels, at a number of major conferences. Thus Kunzlik gave papers on public procurement law at the International Conference Marking the Tenth Anniversary of the Establishment of the Hungarian Procurement Authority (Budapest), the Nordic Procurement Conference (Stockholm), the Copenhagen Symposium on the New EU Procurement Regime (Copenhagen) and the Annual Conference of the Bar European Group (Stresa). He was also invited to present a paper in the field of competition law at the International Symposium held by the University of Minnesota Law School in honour of Dean Thomas Sullivan and chaired a conference session at the “Public Procurement – Global Revolution” International Conference organised by Nottingham and Georgetown Universities. Small gave a paper on “parents and children; welfare, liberty and charter rights” at an international conference at the University of Toronto. Riley has twice been invited to participate as a panel member and to give papers (on the modernisation of the EC competition law rules and on cartels, price fixing and leniency) at the Annual Competition Law Conference held by the British Institute of International & Comparative Law and has lectured on competition law at the Shanghai International Trade Institute, China. Scanlan is regularly invited to give papers at the Cambridge Economic Law Symposium. These papers have been published in The Journal of Financial Crime and one was recently re-published (with permission of The Journal of Financial Crime) in the Israeli Journal of Criminology. Purdue gave a paper on public participation in environmental law to the Environmental Law Foundation (2004) and contributed by invitation to an international symposium on “International takings” at the University of Washington. Wilsher has given a paper by invitation on immigration law at the WG Hart Conference (IALS) (2004).

 

Journals

 

A number of colleagues have been journal editors or members of editorial boards during the current period. These include Purdue, Editor of The Journal of Planning and Environmental Law and a Member of the Editorial Board of The Journal of Environmental Law; Riley, Co-Editor of The Competition Law Review; Scanlan, a Member of the Advisory Board of The Journal of International Banking Law and a correspondent for the Civil Justice Quarterly; and Kunzlik, Assistant Editor of the Public Procurement Law Review, Member of the Editorial Board of the Environmental Law Review and of the Advisory Board of the Environmental Law Reports. Although still an early career researcher, Collins is the Case Note Editor of the Manchester Journal of International Economic Law and external faculty editor of the Osgoode Hall Law Journal and the Ottawa Law Review.

 

Visiting posts

 

Loveland’s reputation as a scholar of public law is reflected in the fact that he has held Visiting Professor appointments at universities in Hong Kong, South Africa and Australia; Wilsher is Visiting Researcher at the University of Nijmegen reflecting the excellence of his research in immigration law; in 2002 Kunzlik was a Visiting Professor at the Department of Law, Sydney University; Reece-Thomas is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Notre Dame; and Riley’s work in competition law is recognised by his appointment as an Associate Research Fellow at the Centre for European Policy Studies, Brussels. Although still an early career researcher, Collins’ growing reputation has resulted in appointment as Visiting Scholar at Georgetown University Law Centre and as a Visiting Fellow at the Georgetown Institute of International Law to pursue his research interests in international economic law whilst on sabbatical in 2008. Nick Hatzis’ emerging reputation has meant that he has been appointed to a post as referendaire to one of the Advocates General at the European Court of Justice, a role that he will fill for two years on leave of absence from City. Goulding has delivered a series of lectures on Comparative Corporate Governance to postgraduate law students at the University of Hamburg in 2005 and 2007 funded by the Thyssen Foundation.

Citation of research by the Courts and others

Scanlan’s work (with McGee), “Constructive Knowledge Within the Limitation Act”, was cited with approval by, and formed a major part of the speech of, Baroness Hale in the House of Lords in Adams v Bracknell Forest Borough Council [2004] 3 W.L.R. 89 at pp. 111-112;  and his co-authored book (with Prime) The Law of Limitations is regularly cited with approval by the courts as by the House of Lords in Cave v Jarvis & Rolfe [2002] UKHL 18 and by the Outer House of the Court of Session (Lord Glennie) in M. v O’Neill (June 2006). The first edition of this book was extensively cited by the Law Commission in its Consultation Paper on Limitation of Actions (No 151) and by the Law Commission of Western Australia in its Report on Limitation and Notices of Actions (Project No. 36). His work on partnerships was cited by the Law Commission’s Final Report on Partnership (No. 283) and its preceding Consultation Paper on Partnerships (No. 158). Small’s work has been cited by the Canadian Courts including, for example, in Re Eurig Estate 1998 2 SCR 565; in Apotex Inc v Canada (AG) (2000) 4 FC 264;  and in Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association v Ontario (AG) 2001 1 SCR 470. Wilsher’s article on “The Administrative Detention of Non-nationals Pursuant to Immigration Control: International and Constitutional Law Perspectives” was cited with approval by Lord Bingham in the House of Lords in A. v. Secretary of State for the Home Department [2004] UKHL 56 at paragraph 69. His article on “Non-state actors and the definition of a refugee in the United Kingdom” was cited with approval by McHugh J. in the High Court of Australia in Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs v. Respondents S52/2003 [2004] HCA 18 at paragraph 54. Kunzlik’s “‘Green Procurement’ Under the New Regime” (published in The New EU Procurement Directives) was selected by the European Commission for inclusion in a select body of writing on public procurement law which was translated and provided as part of its technical assistance package on public procurement for Boznia-Hertzogovina (EUPPP-Phase II).