University Hosts Exploration of Power, Law and Politics

Lady Hale - Worcester Lecture

Academic experts from across the world and leading figures from the fields of law, politics and constitutional affairs are to feature in the week-long event exploring accountability for those in power.

The conference, titled ‘Questions of Accountability: Prerogatives, Power and Politics’, will be hosted online by the University of Worcester, and has been convened by Chris Monaghan, Principal Lecturer in Law at the University of Worcester, and Professor Matthew Flinders, Professor of Politics at the University of Sheffield.

Mr Monaghan said: “We hope that the talks will lead to a greater awareness of accountability, how it operates, its purpose and degrees of effectiveness. The exhibition is designed to be interdisciplinary and allow accountability to be debated by legal academics, judges and lawyers, political scientists, public policy experts and practitioners and politicians. Above all the event is open to all and free to attend and we very much welcome involvement from students, the public and those working or researching in the area.”

The event runs from November 1 to November 5, but registration for a place has opened. 

David Blunkett - credit University of Sheffield

Among those speaking is former Home Secretary, Professor Lord Blunkett, now a Professor of Politics in Practice at the University of Sheffield, and Lady Hale of Richmond DBE, who became the first woman Justice of the Supreme Court and went on to be President of the Supreme Court. Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury, who was appointed President of the Supreme Court in 2012, the second person to hold that office since it was established, will also be speaking. Also featuring is Baroness Manningham-Buller, an independent, crossbench peer in the House of Lords in 2008, who has been a member of the Privileges and Conduct Committee, the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy, and the Science and Technology Committee. Previously, she had a career with MI5 for more than 30 years, serving as Director General from 2002 to 2007.

There are also top experts in law and politics from universities around the world, including Yale, the University of Texas, the University of Missouri, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the University of Chicago, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Sydney and Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin, along with King’s College London and the London School of Economics in the UK.

Other notable contributors are Karen Popp, partner at legal firm Sidley, who has previously served as Associate White House Counsel to the President of the United States, where she advised President Clinton and the White House staff on congressional and grand jury investigations and domestic policy issues. Also giving a talk is Dr Hannah White, who has strategic oversight of the Institute for Government’s programme of work on government, parliament and the civil service, focusing on external relationships and impact.

Professor Flinders said: “In a post-Trump, post-Brexit, some would even say 'post-political' or 'post-democratic' world, questions of accountability seem to dominate public debate and discussion. The 'Questions of Accountability' event provides an innovative arena in which to explore questions of power, control, legitimacy and corruption. Participants will be able to interact with world-leading scholars, senior members of the judiciary and former government ministers in order to cultivate a fresh debate and possibly even novel answers to increasingly urgent questions of accountability.”

The event is free to attend and registration has now opened for those wishing to take part.

To register visit For any questions, contact the organisers at