Research Seminars, Public Lectures and Conferences

Annual Programme 2017-18

Week starting

Wednesdays 1.10 - 2pm

Elystan Morgan Building 1.20

(unless stated otherwise)

Thursdays 1.10 -2pm

Elystan Morgan Building 1.21

(unless stated otherwise)

25 Sept

Ann Sherlock "The Older People’s Commissioners in Wales and Northern Ireland: a comparative study"

My research project involves a comparative study of the Older People’s Commissioners in Wales and in Northern Ireland. While there has been a good deal of academic consideration of Children’s Commissioners in the UK and beyond, the more novel office of Older People’s Commissioner has received much less attention. The overall project being conducted examines a number of aspects concerning these Commissioners, including their role in dealing with individual requests for assistance and their place within the administrative justice system, and their impact on policy development. However, this seminar will focus on the establishment and governance aspects of the offices. In particular, it will raise the question of how the independence of the Commissioners may be secured while still ensuring an appropriate level of accountability. Examining the Commissioners in two jurisdictions within the UK provides an excellent opportunity to demonstrate the relevance of the political contexts in which they operate.

2 Oct

Wednesday 4 October

Ffion Llewelyn   ‘There’s no Place like Home’: Location and Self-defence

The law of self-defence in England and Wales has evolved to provide enhanced protection in householder cases. The implementation of section 43 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013 permits the possible interpretation of ‘disproportionate force’ as ‘reasonable force’. This legislative reform presents interpretative challenges. While the case of R (on the application of Collins) v Secretary of State for Justice [2016] EWHC 33 (Admin) provides clarification regarding the intention behind the householder provision, it leaves much to be desired with regard to assessing the gradient of proportionality which operates within the ‘reasonable force’ test. This paper explores the interpretation of these terms by the court, and the subsequent affirmation of the approach taken in the case of R v Ray (Steven Jason) [2017] EWCA Crim 1391. It is argued that this was a missed opportunity to remove the layers of uncertainty surrounding the householder provision, and that greater consideration is necessary with regard to the role of ‘proportionality’ as a key indicator of reasonableness.


9 Oct

Wednesday 11 October

Uta Kohl  "Territory in the Information Age"

Territories do not exist. Terrain does. Mountains, woods, meadows, lakes, rivers and even towns and villages are real, but a ‘territory’ is a fiction, albeit a powerful one. ‘Territory’ is a social construct that fulfills political and economic purposes at a given time and place. From a historical perspective, it is only relatively recently that the rise of the territorial nation state has normalized and naturalized the notion of territory as a key ‘fact’ in the international and national legal orders. Against the background of the ‘territorial age’ in the 19th and 20th century where the notion of ‘state territory’ was useful for legitimizing control over physical resources, particularly in the context of colonial (territorial) expansion, this paper explores the role and usefulness of the concept in the 21st century information age, when it is information or data that has become the most valuable resource. Data is not dug up in mines, sourced from wells or grown on fields, and yet, the imaginary lines that are drawn around and indeed ‘create’ territories appear to be as powerful as ever. But are they?


16 Oct


Wednesday 18 October

Chris Harding  "A British Legend Cast as a War Criminal: Atrocity and the erasure of memory as imagined in Kazuo Ishiguro’s Buried Giant"

This discussion bases itself on a suggested framework for the investigation and explanation of atrocity offending,  emphasising the primacy of biological and psychological factors in explaining and understanding such offending, and then considering the significance of memory, and the erasure of memory, in relation to the commission of atrocity and its aftermath. It is argued that atrocity springs from natural human tendencies towards violence, aggression, hostility and suspicion towards others, and that such tendencies are moderated by ethical, social and political calculation. External circumstances, involving economic, environmental and cultural factors may act as the triggers of violence, hostility and aggression. Bearing in mind this frame of reference and discussion, it is instructive then to examine the role of memory and its erasure in both the commission and the resolution of atrocity, as both a stimulus of extreme and systematic violence and as a subsequent route to resolution, so testing the strategy of ‘forgive and forget’. The main part of the discussion will take as an example the fictional imagining of atrocity in post-Roman Britain presented in Kazuo Ishiguro’s recent work, The Buried Giant (2015).

Reimagining a legendary war hero as a war criminal (and Merlin as well), a good dose of magic realism, and the virtues of both remembering and forgetting. Or: inventing ‘magic realist criminology’.

23 Oct



30 Oct

Wednesday 1 November EM 2.50

Richard Ireland "A History of the Law (and Criminology!) in One Hundred Objects”

This seminar will address the process of the presentation of research. Drawing on an extensive personal archive of manuscripts, pictures and artefacts, the various contrasting ways of constructing a narrative to expound research findings will be examined. Members of the seminar will be able to handle the materials whilst learning how, for example, a coin can explain Land Law, or a painting can document the “penal revolution” of the 18th and 19th centuries.


6 Nov

Thursday 9 November

Sarah Wydall  "Homicide begins at fifty – an introduction to domestic homicide in England and Wales"

The prevalence of domestic homicide rates are increasing for those aged fifty and over. Recent Safe Lives data in England and Wales suggests 33% of recorded domestic homicides occur in the 50 years and over age-groups. This paper provides an introduction to the literature on this phenomena; risk factors, both individual and societal, trajectory and aftermath. The paper will also provide some reflections on the value of current domestic homicide reviews, detailing the strengths and limitations of current policy.

13 Nov

Wednesday 15 November EM2.50

Rsyzard Piotrowicz   “Law in Action in Azerbaijan: Ministers, Lawyers, Political Prisoners and Weird Gifts. Just Don’t Mention Armenia”

My seminar was an account of my recent visit for the Council of Europe to Azerbaijan to assess the situation in the country with regard to human trafficking. I gave as context a short explanation  of the type of work GRETA does to promote the rights of trafficked people, then I explained what we actually do on country visits, using Azerbaijan as an example. The idea was to try to show what it means when one is engaged in seeking to ensure the implementation of human rights in practice, including through visits to shelters and detention centres.

 20 Nov

Thursday 23 November 1.10pm EM1.21

Kerry Lewis "A Critique of the Centralisation of Welsh Inshore Fisheries Management"

... with some recommendations for change, presenting my contributions to a report (not yet published) led by Alan Terry from UWE, with input from Blaise Bullimore (Marine Ecologist).


27 Nov

Wednesday, 29 November, 1.10pm EM2.50

Marco Odello “Foreign Fighters and the Riga Protocol: The Human Rights Perspective” 

The Additional Protocol (Riga Protocol) to the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism (Adopted by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on 19 May 2015) is an instrument that deals with the emerging phenomenon of terrorist foreign fighters. It follows the United Nations Security Council resolution 2178 addressing the same issue. These two documents are the only legal instruments adopted at international level that address foreign fighters. The questions raised in the seminar concern several issues regarding the scope and application of the Protocol in the Council of Europe member states, which are bound also by the European Convention on Human Rights. The Riga Protocol reminds States that human rights and the rule of law should be guiding the adoption and implementation of national measures. However, it seems that the wording of the Protocol and the suggested measures do not take into account the possible human rights implications.

4 Dec


Wednesday 6 December 1.10pm EM1.21

Lowri Cunnington Wynn 'A year in the life of an early career researcher, a Welsh context...'

‘What do I care about Wales?’ a Study of Migration and Aspirations of Young People from the Welsh Heartlands. (Written in Welsh for the Welsh Language Journal Gwerddon)

The research focuses on a sample of 15-18 year olds and 19-25 year olds, who have either been born outside of Wales or are born here but to non-native parents. It attempts to establish the main factors that affect their rates of out-migration, and to try and ascertain whether or not these young people are to migrate as a result of economic factors only (Jones 2010). The family and extended family, culture and nationality, linguistic considerations and social networks appear to be factors that contribute to the choices of young people to stay or not. Focusing on two areas in particular, it is considered how the characteristics of the areas themselves influence the choices of the young people for the future.

11 Dec

Wednesday 13 December 1.10pm

Ola Olusanya  'One Self or Many Selves? Paradoxes of Collective Violence and Transitional Justice'


18 Dec  Christmas  
25 Dec  Christmas  
1 Jan  Christmas  
8 Jan


15 Jan

Friday, 19 January 2018, 10.00 -17.00, Aberystwyth Arts Centre Cinema

Festival of Law and Criminology

22 Jan

Brendan Coyle 'Brass Roots? Desistance, identity and music-making'

In 1985, Antony Burgess was asked to imagine what would become of Alex, the ultra-violence-and-Beethoven-obsessed protagonist of ‘A Clockwork Orange’. Burgess said, ‘he has a great energy. He'll be able to use it to create. He will become a great musician…’ Drawing on Burgess’ contentious 1962 masterpiece to illustrate some of the key foundational ideas about desistance from crime, this seminar explores the significance of language and the phenomenon of ‘retrospective self-infantilisation' in the desisting narratives of young adults. It also examines the potential for arts-based projects to inspire and support fragile processes of desistance from crime, and addresses the potential for traditional brass band music to contribute to wider social movements of desistance and youth participation in music making.

29 Jan Visting Day!

5 Feb

Wednesday  7 February 1.10pm EM1.21

Naomi Salmon “Nutrition Information, (Dodgy) Food ‘Marketing’ and Childhood Obesity"

Approaching the topic from a human rights perspective, and focusing on the UK context, this paper considers the effectiveness of nutrition information measures as tools to promote consumer empowerment and improved dietary health. With specific reference to both the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights 1966 and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child 1990, this paper considers the extent to which such interventions can be viewed as an adequate and human rights-compliant response to the childhood obesity crisis.

12 Feb

Thursday 15 Feb, 1.10pm, EM2.50

Catrin Huws "The tenth equality, and explorations into the other nine"

This paper considers the possibility of using linguistic equality as a lens within which to evaluate the Equality Act equalities. The rhetoric of equality places an emphasis on diversity. However, the reality of linguistic equality is predicated upon the notion of consumer choice, and the necessity of choosing that which is most familiar. The paper therefore explores the extent to which this is replicated in the perpetuation of inequality in other measures of discrimination.


9 Feb

Wednesday  21 February 1.10pm EM1.21

Glenys Williams "Culture and assisted dying"


26 Feb Strike  
5 March

Wednesday 7 March

REF Briefing Meeting 1.30-3.00pm Rheidol 0.55 - book a place at

12 March

Alan Clarke

19 March

Thursday, 22 March, Main Hall of International Politics Building

4 pm  Professor Leighton Andrews, Cardiff University

Public Lecture: "Facebook, the Media and Democracy"  - organised jointly by Aberystwyth Law School and the Global Communication Research Centre

6pm   Lord Thomas of Cwmgïedd, the new Chancellor of Aberystwyth University.

Public Lecture: "Justice in Wales - the task of the Commission"
The former Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales will talk about his work as the Chair of the Commission for Justice, set up by the Welsh Government to look at opportunities to improve the justice system and policing in Wales.


26 March  Easter


2 April  Easter  
9 April


16 April

PG Study School, 18- 21 April 2018

'Making Progress - What Progress? Law and Regulation making the World a Better Place? '

 23 April Anel Marais  PhD students
 30 April

Ruth Atkins

 PhD students
7 May

David Poyton “The Trials and Tribulations of Uber: the ECJ Judgment in Case C434/15 and Possible Implications for the Sharing Economy”.

 PhD students
14 May John Williams  PhD students
21 May Distance Learning Info Session... with Kate Wright, Lloyd Roderick & Carrie Fox PhD students
28 May  PhD students  
 4 June


11 June


18 June    
25 June    

Archive of Law School Research Seminars

Law School Research Expertise and Interests

Human Rights Protection


Anel Boshoff – human rights theory

Catrin Fflur Huws  - language rights and minority rights

Sarah Wydall – human rights and domestic violence policy development

Marco Odello – humanitarian law – International Commissions of inquiry - international human rights organisations - international law

Ryszard Piotrowicz – humanitarian law - people trafficking – refugees - migration law - international law

Law and Society

Anel Boshoff – family and gender issues - law and language - semiotics -  law and politics

Glenys Williams – euthanasia

Rebecca Zerk - Gender-based harms, particularly domestic violence and abuse

Catrin Fflur Huws – law and theatre - law and literature - law and linguistics

Sarah Wydall  - gender-based harms

Ryszard Piotrowicz – law and gender

Criminal Justice




Sarah Wydall - justice mechanisms

Glenys Williams – emotions in criminal law

Ffion Llewelyn – self-defence and knife crime

Jen Phipps –  criminological perspectives on the military and veterans - gender in the military - early intervention / crime prevention - reintegration of offenders - victim offender mediation - police training & education

Ola Olusanya– international crimes – war and veterans –criminological theory – theoretical integration in criminology – punishment - race and crime

Ryszard Piotrowicz – human trafficking and human smuggling

Rebecca Zerk - Crimes against older people and justice seeking remedies -  victims experiences in the adversial process

Brendan Coyle - young adults in contact with the criminal justice system - desistance from crime - arts interventions

Welsh Affairs

Catrin Fflur Huws – Welsh language rights - bilingual law making and statutory interpretation

Kerry Lewis – nature conservation in Wales - planning and devolution

Ann Sherlock – devolution – Commissioners and Ombudsmen in Wales – implementation of children’s rights in Wales

Glenys Williams – health care in rural Wales

John Williams – social care and devolution

Technology and Society


Rebecca Zerk - the use and misue of technology in young people’s intimate relationships (developing and maintaining relationships, sexting, coercive control, monitoring and survelliance)


Governance and Constitutional Studies

Anel Boshoff – governance and gender equality

Sarah Wydall – research ethics and qualitative methodologies

Nathan Gibbs – constitutional theory - history of legal theory - comparative law

If you are interested in completing research in an area not mentioned here, please also get in touch as this list is indicative only.

Research Centres and Projects

The Law School Research Student Activities

Aberystwyth Law School Postgraduate Conference

Aberystwyth Law School Postgraduate Conference is a student led endeavour which aims to enhance research, learning and discussion as well as to provide networking opportunities in a friendly and supportive environment. We aim to be an informal/relaxing environment for student researchers to begin their conference journey and to develop their research.

Undergraduates are also encouraged to attend the conference so that they can experience a postgraduate environment and enhance any research interests they may have.

The conference is held annually and to find out more and keep up to date about the next conference, visit our website, social media sites or email us.

Website or Facebook

Twitter: @AberLawConf Email:

Past conference titles:

2017: ‘The Interwoven Relationship of Law and Media’

2016: ‘Changing Law…Changing Society?’


Law PhD Students Podcast on Legal Topics

Two of our PhD students, Megan and Linda are podcasting to relate legal topics for lay people. It is their aim to demonstrate how the Law is relevant and interesting outside of University walls while making it accessible to the general public.

Please scrawl through the below soundcloud options for available interviews.


Aberystywth Law School PG Blogging Website

The website gives students at Aberystwyth’s Law School a space to share their work and their experiences, not only to support their own development, but also to encourage public and academic engagement, and even to bring other PG students (from other institutions) together in our experiences.

Equally, the website also plays host to the “LawStories” podcast where you will hear relevant and/or interesting law related stories, facts and discussions from experts in an accessible manner.

Please see out About Us section for future information on the purpose of this website, and see our current blog posts to get you started.

Teaching and Research Areas of Interest

Crime and Popular Culture. 

Human Rights and Social Justice 

Cyber Crime