Established in 2021, the Constitutions, Rights and Justice special interest research group seeks to foster a collaborative approach regarding how to talk about and conduct research on the nature of constitutions, different categories of rights (i.e., social, political, legal and employment) and the importance of justice in its many forms. 

Constitutions, Rights and Justice is based within the School of Humanities at the University of Worcester. This innovative group brings together academics at the University of Worcester, external academics, legal practitioners and active and retired judges to work together on a myriad of issues and seek scope for collaboration within the wider academy and legal practice. The group builds upon five years of research and scholarly activity within the School of Law at the University of Worcester that has focused on issues such as the application of the Fraud Act 2006, the Miller litigation, the rule of law and access to justice.   

Aims

The aims of the group are to:

  1. Engage with the public, the academy and legal practice through the dissemination of research and scholarship, the hosting of Public Lectures, workshops and research seminars.
  2. Foster collaboration between ordinary members, associate members and the wider academy and legal practice.
  3. Produce innovative research and other scholarly work that advance the work of the group.

The group’s director is Dr Chris Monaghan. If you have any questions, please contact Chris at c.monaghan@worc.ac.uk.

Membership

The group consists of both ordinary members and associate members and prospective members are welcome to get in contact to enquire about joining. 

Ordinary members

Stephen Hurley

Stephen Hurley is a solicitor and a Principal Lecturer in Employment and Equality Law. He has published in the areas of disability harassment and misconduct in the workplace and teaches Contract Law, Disability Law and Employment Law.  He is currently researching the issue of the protection of non-religious philosophical belief in the workplace in support of his ongoing PhD studies with Oxford Brookes University. Before entering the ivory towers of academia, Stephen worked for over a decade in private practice as an Employment Solicitor, becoming a partner in a large commercial law firm. 

Dr Chris Monaghan

Dr Chris Monaghan is the Director of the Constitutions, Rights and Justice special interest research group. He is a Principal Lecturer in Law and specialises in Constitutional Law and accountability, with a particular emphasis on the accountability of the executive and the use of impeachment. Chris holds a PhD in law from King’s College London and has published on constitutional law, human rights and discrimination law. He is the co-editor of the Routledge Frontiers in Accountability Studies book series and is the author of Public Law (Routledge 2021). His book, Accountability, Impeachment and Constitution: The Case for a Modernised Process for the United Kingdom will be published by Routledge in 2022.

Nicola Monaghan

Nicola Monaghan is a Principal Lecturer in Law specialising in Criminal Law and the Law of Evidence. She is the author of Criminal Law Directions, now in its 7th edition (OUP). She has published on criminal procedure and evidence, including issues relating to jury misconduct. Her research has been cited by the Law Commission.

Dr Aisha Shah

Dr Aisha Shah is a Lecturer in Law. Her research interests lie in the field of English Private Law, and in particular claims for restitution in equity, property, trusts and unjust enrichment. 

 During her undergraduate studies, Aisha was awarded the Dean’s Law Scholarship to pursue her doctoral studies. She completed her PhD in 2020. Her doctoral research is titled ‘Proprietary Claims and Unjust Enrichment’. It focuses on the availability of proprietary responses in the law of unjust enrichment. Her research uses the classic example of the mistaken payment as the basis for developing her approach and builds upon the work of the late Professor Peter Birks.  Aisha published a paper in the Trust Law International journal in 2017 titled ‘Proprietary Restitution and Receipt by Insolvent Agents: Angove’s Pty Ltd v Bailey’. She has presented papers in the Restitution Section of the Society of Legal Scholars Conference at the University of Oxford in 2016 and the University of Exeter in 2020. Aisha also presented her research at the Modern Studies in Property Law Conference (postgraduate stream) at UCL in 2018.

Josie Welsh

Josie Welsh is a Lecturer in Law and her research interests cover constitutional law and theory, political jurisprudence, political science and judicial studies. Josie is a PhD candidate at the University of Sheffield and is currently undertaking research into the changing patterns of judicial power in the United Kingdom.

Doug Wotherspoon

Doug Wotherspoon after practising as a solicitor for 20 years specialising in company and commercial law (with a particular niche in insolvency law) has now been lecturing for 12 years. He was initially assigned to teach on various law modules at Worcester Business School at University of Worcester and, after teaching on other modules in the Business School such as Business Skills and Business Ethics and a couple of years as Course Leader of the BA (Hons) Business portfolio, he moved to the Law School at University of Worcester shortly after its inception. He now teaches on various modules including Professional Legal Skills and Ethics, Law of Torts, Commercial Law and Company Law. He also oversees the Work-based Placement module for final year students. He has presented at conferences at home and abroad and in May 2020 he secured for University of Worcester the ASET Summer Project Bursary Award which involved supervision of a student research project on the gap between academic qualifications and the skills demanded of graduates by employers and making an online presentation on that subject to the annual ASET conference.

 

Associate Members

 

HH Toby Hooper QC

HH Toby Hooper QC graduated in Law from Durham University in 1972. From 1973 he practised as a Barrister in London (latterly as a QC) in civil liability claims and employment and discrimination claims until he was appointed a Circuit Judge for the Cities of Hereford and Worcester in 2007. He retired in 2016. He was a member of the Parole Board 2010–13.  He is a Bencher (Governor) of his Inn of Court (Inner Temple), Vice-Chair of Heart of Mercia Multi-Academy Trust (the Sixth Form Colleges at Hereford, Stourbridge and Worcester), an Honorary Fellow of the University of Worcester, and an Honorary Freeman of the City of Hereford. 

David Mason QC, Deputy Head of Chambers, No 5 Chambers

David Mason QC, Deputy Head of Chambers, No 5 Chambers

HHJ Jim Tindal

HHJ Jim Tindal was appointed the Designated Civil Judge for Worcestershire and Herefordshire in January 2020 having been appointed a Circuit Judge in 2016. He is a former barrister at St Philips Chambers in Birmingham and at that time used to sit as a part-time employment and immigration judge.

 

 

Research and Scholarly Activity

  • The Constitutions, Rights and Justice special interest research group will be hosting a session at the Questions of Accountability: Prerogatives, Power and Politics conference on 5 November 2021. This session will see several members of the group and academics from other universities explore pertinent issues relating to the constitution and accountability. For more information please visit the conference webpages.
  • Doug Wotherspoon will be delivering a research paper at the School of Law’s Winter Research Workshop in December 2021.

 

 Humanities at Worcester