Name: Mariza Avgeri
Funding: John and Pat Hume Full Doctoral Award
Thesis Title: ‘A Transgender Studies Approach on gender identity and expression in the context of European Asylum Law’
Supervisor: Dr. Fergus Ryan
Abstract: This research project seeks to delve into current jurisprudence on gender-identity based asylum claims and doctrinally analyze the related case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union and the European Court of Human Rights. In order for current challenges to be identified in the context of the theory and practice of Refugee Status Determination (RSD), a theoretical approach will be laid down, followed by an analysis of the legal framework that is in place for refugee status determination of trans-related asylum claims. Given that gender identity and expression are complex concepts often articulated in heteronormative or medical terms, the refugee determination process will be analyzed in relation to the challenges but also the potential it provides for encompassing the experience of transgender and gender non-conforming asylum seekers. Contemporary developments in theories of gender identity will inform the analysis, as well as good practices in the evolving field of gender identity and Human Rights Law.
Biography:Mariza Avgeri is an associate Lecturer at the Open University in the UK on Law, Society and Culture and an EU law tutor at Maynooth University. She is a qualified lawyer in Athens, Greece. She has graduated with a Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Political Science from VU Amsterdam. She is currently completing her PhD in Maynooth University at the Law Department working on transgender asylum claims and jurisprudence in the context of the European Union. She is a John and Pat Hume scholar for her doctoral studies. She has worked as a legal researcher, a case worker at the Greek Asylum Service and a member of the Appels’ Committees. She has participated in many civil rights initiatives regarding migrant rights and LGBT rights, both as a lawyer and as a member of the queer community.
Avgeri, Mariza. ‘Trans*it: Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Asylum Claimants’ Narratives in Greece.’ Sexualities, (April 2021). https://doi.org/10.1177/13634607211013278.
Avgeri, Mariza. ‘Assessing transgender and gender nonconforming asylum claims: Towards a Transgender Studies Framework on Particular Social Group and Persecution.’ Frontiers in Human Dynamics (May 2021). https://10.3389/fhumd.2021.653583.
: Siobhán Buckley
Current Funding: Irish Research Council (Government of Ireland Postgraduate) Scholarship Scheme (2020-2021)
Maynooth University John and Pat Hume Scholarship (2017-2020)
Siobhán graduated with a First-Class Honours Bachelor of Laws Degree (LL.B.) from Maynooth University in 2014. Siobhán attended the Honorable Society of Kings Inns and obtained the Barrister at Law Degree (B.L) in 2015 and she was called to the Bar of Ireland as a qualified Barrister. Siobhán proceeded to work in Dublin law firms for two years obtaining practical experience and exposure in multiple areas of law including family law, litigation and regulatory law. Siobhán returned to Maynooth University in September 2017 to conduct a PhD in the area of comparative criminology and youth justice. Siobhán was awarded the Maynooth University Postgraduate Community Impact Award in 2019. In 2020, Siobhan was awarded the IRC GOI Postgraduate Scholarship.
Thesis Title: “Contrasts in Tolerance?”: A cross -sectoral analysis of punitiveness in the adult and youth criminal justice systems of Ireland, Scotland and the Netherlands 1990 – 2015.
Supervisor: Professor Claire Hamilton
There has been much discussion on the increase of punitiveness or harshness in the criminal justice systems over recent years as demonstrated by the eightfold increase in imprisonment rates in the United States since the 1970s and significant increases in many western jurisdictions. This tendency towards a harsher approach appears to have been mirrored in the juvenile justice system, for example, the doubling of the population of children detained in the UK since 1993. One aspect of the debate which has arguably been under-explored in this regard is cross-sectoral variation within countries, namely, divergence in some countries between the adult and youth justice systems and a more consistent approach across the two sectors in other jurisdictions. This raises important questions about cross-sectoral ‘contrasts in tolerance’ and the determinants of these policies, including intriguing questions about the historical, cultural, economic, social factors preserving (or not) a distinct approach to youth justice in certain jurisdictions. This research will seek to answer such questions by conducting a case-within-a-case comparative case study on cross-sectoral punitiveness within the criminal justice systems of Ireland, Scotland and The Netherlands.
(2021) ‘Does Ireland have a Divergent Criminal Justice System? A Preliminary Cross-Sectoral Analysis of Punitiveness in the Adult and Youth Criminal Justice Sectors in Ireland, 1990-2015’ Irish Criminal Law Journal, 31(4), 99-107.
(2021) ‘Deconstructing diversion? The role of the power to punish in explaining distinct approaches to youth justice’, Irish Criminology Research Network (April 2021).
(2021) ‘Preliminary findings of a cross-sectoral analysis of punitiveness in the adult, young adult, and youth justice systems in Ireland, Scotland and the Netherlands.’ British Society of Criminology Conference 2021 [online].
(2019) ‘Measuring punitiveness in the adult, young adult and youth criminal justice systems.’ Transitions: Juvenile Justice and Young Adult Justice Panel. 19th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology in Ghent, Belgium.
(2019) ‘Measuring punitiveness in the adult, young adult and youth criminal justice systems.’ Youth Justice Panel. 12th North-South Irish Criminology Conference in UCC, Cork.
(2018) ‘Contrasts in Tolerance?’ Cross sectoral punitiveness in the adult and youth criminal justice systems.’ 18th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
(2018) ‘Contrasts in Tolerance?’ Cross sectoral punitiveness in the adult and youth criminal justice systems. ’ Youth Justice Panel. 11th North-South Irish Criminology Conference in UCD.
Biography: Danielle graduated from Griffith College Dublin in 2014 with a Bachelor of Law degree, followed by a Masters in International Law in 2016. Her LL.M. thesis explored the transition from the Safe-Harbour Principles to the E.U.-U.S. Privacy Shield. In 2017, Danielle was invited as a guest lecturer to speak to the LL.M. class in Griffith College Dublin. Danielle was accepted into Maynooth University’s PhD in 2018 under the supervision of Dr. Noelle Higgins.
Supervisor: Dr. Noelle Higgins
Danielle’s doctoral research examines how the right to culture is protected in transition from war to peace.
Danielle has published material in the Human Rights Consortium Blog hosted by the School of Advanced Study in the University of London.
Danielle has presented research in Maynooth University’s 2018 conference on
“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at Seventy; A Review of Successes and Challenges, 21st and 22nd June 2018”;
and in University of London’s 2019 Human Rights Research Students' Conference.
: Emily Dunne
Current Funding: John and Pat Hume Scholarship 2020-2024
Emily completed her undergraduate study in Sociology and qualified with a first-class honour at the Dublin Business School 2018, whilst also receiving the award for the Graduate of the Year Award. The study for this BA dissertation, researched Charity Boards of Management and focused on the motivation of the trustees. Emily had been involved in the setup of the Irish Charity Look Good Feel Better and was also responsible for the managing and project development of this charity in hospitals throughout Ireland. This undergraduate study was completed part-time over four years whilst working as the charity’s project manager. In 2018-2019 Emily continued her studies, full-time, at The Edward Kennedy Institute, Maynooth University achieving a first-class honour in Masters of Mediation and Conflict Intervention. The subject of Mediation in Cross-border child abduction was the dissertation topic for this MA and thus the need for further study in this field was identified. Having successfully received funding from the John and Pat Hume Scholarship, Emily is now undertaking a Law PhD continue this study. Emily is also a volunteer mediator at the Community Law and Mediation (CLM) support.
Family mediation in international child abduction cases in Ireland: One size will not fit all. http://mural.maynoothuniversity.ie/12926/
Book Review Cross-Border Family Mediation International Parental Child Abduction -Custody and Access Cases (Second and updated edition) In co-operation with MiKK, http://mural.maynoothuniversity.ie/12999/
Supervisors: Dr Fergus Ryan and Dr Treasa Kenny
Thesis Title: A Difficult Time to Talk: Mediation in International Parental Child Abduction.
The 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, is the treaty to protect children, who may be victims of cross-border child abduction and the legal process is in place for a swift return to their place of habitual residence. All such cases are heard in The High Court and are customarily referred to as, Hague cases. The Guide to Good Practice of 2012, under the Hague Convention of 1980 has ensured that the return process for the child to the place of habitual residence is swift and with the full support of the law. This sensitive subject is devoid of critical informed research. In Ireland, over the past three years, the Legal Aid Board have introduced mediation to a selection of Hague cases, through the Family Mediation Service. These specific Hague cases were deemed suitable by the legal professionals and the value that mediation has added to this process has been acknowledged by the both the legal and mediation professionals. The minimum previous research available, recognised the positive approach to the conflicts involved in International child abduction and the desire of all the professionals to support the parents at this very emotive and difficult time. The Legal Aid Board’s Family Mediation Services are proceeding cautiously and the opinion of where and when mediation fits into the legal arena and is now being considered more openly and in line with The Hague Convention recommendations.
Name: Ciara Finnegan
Funding: Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship 2021
Thesis Title: A critical analysis of the use of weapons in Outer Space with a view to forming recommendations for regulation from the perspective of the Principle of Humanity in International Humanitarian Law.
Supervisor: Dr Noelle Higgins
International humanitarian law (hereinafter IHL) is the law that regulates the conduct of armed conflicts. However, IHL constantly struggles to keep pace with advancements in science regarding the regulation of newly developed weapons. This results in a lacuna in the law of weapons regulation which persists as weapons technologies continue to emerge. With respect to the emergence of weapons technologies which can be used in Outer Space, the 1967 Outer Space Treaty does not prohibit the use of all forms of weapons in Outer Space, which could pose potential risk to space-faring States as well as the Earth-based population.In the midst of these gaps in the regulation of weapons in Outer Space, the Martens Clause (initially enshrined in the 1899 Hague Convention II and re-iterated in numerous instruments thereafter) stipulates that the central principle of humanity (which forms the foundations of IHL alongside the principles of distinction, proportionality, and military necessity), should apply in the absence of express legislation. While the Martens Clause partially fills the lacunae in weapons regulation, it only provides a minimum standard of protection.
Therefore, this thesis argues that express legislation is the only way IHL can effectively address these lacunae and sufficiently regulate the use of weapons in Outer Space. As activity in Outer Space intensifies, I will investigate the increasingly pressing threat of the operation of weapons systems in Outer Space, an area which remains predominantly unregulated in both the IHL and Space Law frameworks. By examining the gaps at the intersection of these frameworks through the lens of the principle of humanity, I aim to achieve a comprehensive analysis from which recommendations for legislation regulating the use of weapons in Outer Space can be drawn.
Ciara Finnegan received an Entrance Scholarship to Maynooth University in 2013. In 2017, she graduated with a first-class honours BCL International in Law and French. Ciara received a Maynooth University Taught Masters Scholarship in 2018-19 while completing an LLM in International Justice. During this time, Ciara undertook a research placement with Scholars at Risk, investigating denials of academic freedom globally. Ciara also contributed to the work of Scholars at Risk through the submission of incident reports. Ciara was awarded the John and Pat Hume Scholarship in 2019 to undertake her PhD research in the areas of International Humanitarian Law and Space Law under the supervision of Dr Noelle Higgins. Ciara was awarded the Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship in 2021 to continue this research.
Napier, Finnegan, Munnelly and Bangura, 'Space in Support of Sustainable Development: Supporting the UN's Space4SDGs Initiative' (2021) 3(29) Room: Space Journal of Asgardia 62.
Finnegan, Ciara, ‘The Principle of Humanity: A Beacon of Hope in the Modern ‘Fog of War’ (10 August 2020) Socio-Legal Studies Association Blog <http://slsablog.co.uk/blog/blog-posts/virtualslsa2020-the-principle-of-humanity-a-beacon-of-hope-in-the-modern-fog-of-war/>.
Finnegan, Ciara, ‘The Uyghur Minority in China: A Case Study of Cultural Genocide, Minority Rights and the Insufficiency of the International Legal Framework in Preventing State-Imposed Extinction’ (2020) 9(1) Laws.
Finnegan, Ciara, ‘Investigating the Varying Interpretations of the Common Heritage of Mankind in International Law’, Australia and New Zealand Society of International Law 2021 Postgraduate Online Workshop, July 2021.
Finnegan, Ciara and Maguire, Gerard, ‘A Harmonious Dichotomy of Survival: Addressing the Fluctuation of the Anthropocene through Small Island Developing States and Outer Space’, Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference 2021, March 2021.
Finnegan, Ciara, ‘Outer Space Solutions to the Climate Crisis: Analysing How the Space Law Framework Can Provide for the Responsible Implementation of Lunar Resource Extraction’, Development Studies Association of Ireland Annual Conference, October 2020.
Name:Warsame Ali Garare
Before coming to Maynooth University, Warsame earned Bachelor of Law (LLB) from Dublin Institute of Technology (2011) and Master of Law (LLM) from University College of Dublin (2013). His master’s thesis examined ‘The Use of Detention in the Context of Asylum in the EuropeanUnion’. In it he explored the right to seek asylum versus territorial sovereignty of the state. Warsame is also a researcher and participant in the production of many socially engaged art projects as a co-founder and a member of the Global Migration Collective Research Group.
Thesis Title:Asylum Seekers: Pawns on a Global Chessboard
European Union Extra-territorialisation of Migration Control, State Responsibility and Refugee Protection under International Law
Supervisor: Dr. John Reynolds
The policy debate in the European Union has intensified amidst the rising number of irregular border crossings fuelled by crises in the Middle East and Northern Africa and the increase of nationalist electoral victories. Often that debate avoids adequately addressing state responsibility regarding migration and the legally binding right to seek asylum.
This thesis is concerned with the obstacles faced by those entitled to seek asylum under international refugee law but prevented from doing so because of European Union extra-territorialisation policies that are designed to limit human migration into Europe in ways that impact on all migrants, whether they potentially meet the criteria for refugee status or not. Migrants writ large are characterised as “economic migrants” and excluded from the right to enter as such; migrants seeking to claim asylum are caught by the same net - physically excluded from entry by extra-territorial policies and in practice denied the right to claim asylum on the basis of state practice requiring physical presence on the territory of the host state to do so. Public international law, human rights law and international refugee law have interacted in such a way that, in practice, the prerogative of the state to exclude non-citizens often trumps the asylum rights of refugees.
The main aims of this research project are to examine: (i) the implications of European extra-territorial migration control for those seeking protection; (ii) how international refugee law and human rights law have responded to new EU measures; and (iii) the types of cooperation that EU and certain member states have sought with different external actors in the context of migration control, and to extent to which that has been shaped by international law's rules and gaps.
Funding: Graduate Teaching Studentship
Thesis Title: Tutelam Corporum: A Critical Analysis of Witness Protection in Ireland
Supervisor: Professor Claire Hamilton
Since the somewhat improvised inception of ‘witness protection’ in the 1980s, emanating from the states’ desire for a “strategy to secure convictions against major organised crime figures”; The procedures afforded (or lack thereof) towards such witnesses have been continually highlighted and scrutinised by politicians, institutional bodies, members of the judiciary and legal academics alike. The issue garnered particular attention in the late 1990s in the aftermath of the murder of crime reporter Veronica Guerin.
The concept of a ‘protected witness’ presents a myriad of complex legal issues which mandate careful consideration for any prospective legislator or judge. Despite it being somewhat ubiquitous nowadays, Ireland remains one of only a handful of countries, either developed or developing, which does not possess any specific governing legislation on this potentially pernicious issue, which encompasses a broad range of interwoven rights, interests, principles and philosophies of law.
The aim of this research project is to examine the measures currently employed by the state concerning witness protection, as well as their associated implications, from the context of three key perspectives: The State, the protected witness and the accused. The study employs a comparative methodology in order to gain insight into the approaches of other relevant jurisdictions. Ultimately, the project aims to determine whether the states’ current legal understanding of witness protection ‘lawfully and prudently’ balances all vested parties’ interests, and to make recommendations as appropriate.
Aaron graduated from Maynooth University in 2020 with a First-Class Bachelor of Law (International) degree. In 2020, Aaron was elected by the President of ELSA (European Law Students’ Association) Ireland to the position of National Director for Alumni, as well as being a representative member on the Board of Management for the Association.
Aaron commenced his PhD in January 2021, as a successful recipient of the Department sponsored Studentship, tutoring in undergraduate areas of Law including Introduction to Criminal Justice, Tort Law and Evidence Law.
2021: Most Read on RTE Brainstorm – The Secret World of the Irish Witness Protection Programme
2021: Presentation of THE GREATEST LEGAL ENGINE VERSUS WITNESS PROTECTION: EXAMINATION OF A PROTECTED WITNESS at the Maynooth-Modena Colloquia.
Name: Firdavs Kabilov
Funding: Maynooth University Department of Law Scholarship
Thesis Title: Mainstreaming Climate Change into Project Finance: A Path to Sustainability through Public-Private Partnerships
Supervisor: Dr. Edana Richardson
The research investigates the role of finance as the engine of change in responding to the challenge of climate change. In the face of ongoing global warming and habitat loss, the financial industry has a two-fold responsibility. On the one hand, it needs to take measures to mitigate the negative effects of climate change on its business and clients. On the other hand, it should help to build a sustainable future by redirecting funds to ‘green’ and ‘sustainable’ projects. Yet within the financial industry, there remains a prioritisation of commercial value over broader public interests. From a legal perspective, a question that arises is how such prioritisation is sustained in the face of significant environmental implications, and the role existing legal and voluntary frameworks play in facilitating this.
With that said, a change in perception, and a shift in practice, may now be starting to happen. One example is the emergence of environmental, social and governance indicators applied by investors and fund managers. Through doctrinal and qualitative investigation, Firdavs’ research, explores the legal, regulatory, and structural implications of incorporating climate change considerations into financing activities in the European Union (EU). The choice of jurisdiction is inspired by the EU’s global leadership in supporting the transition to a low-carbon, more resource-efficient and sustainable economy. In particular, the research will focus on financing with respect to large infrastructure projects under public-private partnerships mechanisms (PPP), and their suitability for environmentally-friendly infrastructure financing and development. The legal interaction between PPP financing and climate change goals remains underexplored in an academic context. This doctoral research aims to address this gap, and to make recommendations that have policy and practical implications for ongoing efforts to build a climate friendly future.
Firdavs started his doctoral studies at the Maynooth University Department of Law in October 2021. He holds a law degree from the University of Edinburgh (LLM). Prior to joining Maynooth, Firdavs has worked as a legal practitioner focusing on infrastructure, renewable energy and other regulated sectors in Uzbekistan. He has also advised international organizations and governments across Central Asia on environment, water and climate change related issues. In addition to legal practice and international consultancy work, Firdavs held the position of a Senior Lecturer in Commercial Law at Westminster International University in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, an accredited institution of Westminster University in London.
Jakhongir-Salim Abdurazzakov & Firdavs Kabilov (Aug 2021), “The Renewable Energy Law Review: Uzbekistan” in The Law Reviews by Law Business Research Ltd, UK (4th edition)
Firdavs Kabilov (Jan 2018) “Local Water Management in Tajikistan: Legal Framework”, (2017) 3(2) Central Asian Journal of Water Research, 73-88
Alexander Platonov, Kai Wegerich, Jusipbek Kazbekov, Firdavs Kabilov “Beyond the state order? Second crop production in the Ferghana Valley, Uzbekistan”, (2014) 2 International Journal of Water Governance, 83–104
Oliver Olsson, Kai Wegerich & Firdavs Kabilov “Water Quantity and Quality in the Zerafshan River Basin: Only an Upstream Riparian Problem?”, (2012) 28(3) International Journal of Water Resources Development, 493-505
Kai Wegerich, Jusipbek Kazbekov, Firdavs Kabilov & Nozilakhon Mukhamedova “Meso-level Cooperation on Transboundary Tributaries and Infrastructure in the Ferghana Valley”, (2012) 28(3) International Journal of Water Resources Development, 525- 543
Name:Victoria Oluwatobi Isa Daniel
Current Funding: Maynooth Law Department Doctoral Scholar
Thesis Title: Access to Legal Advice and Assistance for International Protection Applicants
International and EU law obligations require States to develop an asylum system that properly identifies and supports people in need of international protection. A critical component of a functional and human rights-compliant asylum system is providing international protection applicants (‘asylum seekers’) with high-quality legal assistance. Although the EU’s Asylum Procedures Directive provides that ‘every applicant should have the opportunity to consult a legal adviser’, European studies on the provision of legal assistance in asylum proceedings express concerns about the effectiveness of the legal assistance afforded to asylum seekers. This is apprehension is reflected in the current state of access to and quality of legal assistance for asylum seekers in Ireland as the system is more concentrated on providing legal advice rather than guaranteeing legal representation at the initial interview, therefore proving insufficient. Community advocates have consistently emphasised that ’the difficulty people have in accessing legal advice and assistance from qualified solicitors means that people seeking asylum in Ireland have great difficulty in getting a positive decision’.
While the Irish direct provision and international protection determination systems have been the subject of sustained critique due to serious human rights deficiencies, the specific issue of access to legal assistance has been neglected in both the domestic and the international literature. This socio-legal study offers the first comprehensive and scholarly review of the existing law, policy, and practice in this area in Ireland. It critically analyses whether Irish law, policy and practice comply with regional and international legal obligations (including the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights). The study will adopt doctrinal, comparative, and qualitative methodologies. Crucially, this thesis will draw on in-depth interviews with legal practitioners and relevant stakeholders to understand how Irish law and policies relating to legal assistance for asylum seekers and refugees work in practice.
Victoria graduated top of her class from Maynooth University’s first cohort of BCL Law and Criminology student in 2020. During her undergraduate degree, Victoria received a research award from the law department for her contributions in 2020. Victoria then went on to study an LL.M. in International Human Rights and Public Policy in University College Cork. Her LL.M. thesis explored the right to legal advice and assistance for international applicants in Ireland. Victoria has worked in the field of Immigration law and research on several projects with various non-governmental organisations. Her interests are around advocacy, human rights, and refugee law. Victoria has hosted events on the Refugee determination process with a panel of legal professionals on Refugee week in 2021. Victoria was offered a John and Pat Hume Scholarship and awarded the Maynooth Law Department Doctoral Scholarship in 2021 to undertake her PhD research in the area of Refugee Law under the supervision of Dr. Cliodhna Murphy.
Name: Claire McGovern
Current Funding: John and Pat Hume Scholarship 2017
Claire McGovern graduated from Maynooth University with a first-class honours LLB Degree in 2016. During her time at Maynooth Claire interned with the Legal Aid Board which first sparked her interest in family law and property matters. In her final year Claire was awarded the Walls & Toomey Family law prize for coming first in the Family Law Module and after graduation she worked as a legal intern with Walls & Toomey Solicitors for one year. In 2017 Claire was awarded a John and Pat Hume Scholarship to return to Maynooth and conduct her PhD studies in the area of property law and bioethics under the supervision of Dr Neil Maddox. Claire is actively involved within the Department of Law and has conducted undergraduate tutorials in Land Law.
Thesis Title: The extent to which gametes and embryos may be treated as property and the legal consequences of this
Supervisor: Dr Neil Maddox
The rapid advancements in biotechnology have inevitably led to legal conflicts. Nowhere is this more manifest than with the development of artificial reproductive technologies. For instance, the practice of cryopreservation enables medical practitioners to remove, freeze and store both reproductive cells and embryos ex vivo. However, this increased handling and subsequent preservation of human tissue poses a myriad of issues for judicial concern. Recent years have seen an increase in litigation, whereby the concerned parties dispute the status of both gametes and embryos for the purposes of either possession, control, use, disposal, or profit. At issue in these cases is whom shall have dominion over the relevant tissue. Moreover, the courts language of ‘possession’, ‘use’ and ‘disposal’ etc. is terminology which is commonly affiliated with the law of property. Animosity centred on the ownership of human tissue is only going to escalate within the coming years and as it stands, the precise legal status of both gametes and embryos remains unclear. In order to effectively resolve these conflicts the court must have an appropriate framework in which to work. Thus, the objective of this research is to examine the extent to which gametes and embryos may be treated as items of property and to explore the varying legal consequences of this.
Name: Muiread Murphy
Funding: Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship (2019-2023)
Thesis Title: The Investigation and Identification of Human Trafficking for the Purpose of Labour Exploitation: A Frontline Actor Perspective
Supervisor: Dr. David Doyle and Dr. Clíodhna Murphy
Muiread’s research will focus on State obligations relating to the investigation and identification of victims of severe labour exploitation, drawing on international, European and domestic law. For the purpose of this research, the concept of “severe labour exploitation” encompasses trafficking for labour exploitation, slavery, servitude and forced labour (EUFRA 2014). Through a combination of doctrinal and qualitative research, the proposed research will be novel in examining the difficulties associated with identification and investigation both in law and in practice, considering how criminal law and labour law approaches may be integrated more effectively to ensure comprehensive investigation and identification regimes.
Muiread graduated from Maynooth University with a first class honours Bachelor of Laws Degree in 2017. On the basis of her undergraduate performance, she was nominated by the Maynooth University Law Department to participate in the Chief Justice’s Superior Court Summer Internship Programme in the Summer of 2017. In 2018, she completed a Masters in Arts Degree (Comparative Criminology and Criminal Justice), with first class honours. Muiread was awarded the Maynooth Alumni Scholarship to complete this Masters Degree. Her MA thesis explored the difficulties encountered in the identification of victims of labour trafficking.
David M. Doyle, Clíodhna Murphy, Muiread Murphy, Pablo Rojas Coppari and Rachel J. Wechsler, ‘“I Felt Like She Owns Me”: Exploitation and Uncertainty in the Lives of Labour Trafficking Victims in Ireland’ (2019) 59(1) The British Journal of Criminology 231-251.
Clíodhna Murphy, David M. Doyle and Muiread Murphy, ‘“Still Waiting” for Justice: Migrant Workers’ Perspectives on Labour Exploitation in Ireland’ (2020) 49(3) Industrial Law Journal 318-351.
Muiread Murphy, David M. Doyle and Clíodhna Murphy, ‘Labour trafficking and the challenges of victim identification in Ireland: exploring the legacy of Article 4 UDHR’ in N. Higgins, A. Adanan, D.M. Doyle and M. Doherty (eds), The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70: A Review of Successes and Challenges (Clarus Press 2020).
Name: Catherine O’Connell
Catherine is a practicing mediator, restorative dialogue facilitator, conflict management coach and delivers training in all three areas. From 2014 to 2020 Catherine has been a lecturer in restorative practice, mediation and conflict management coaching at the Edward Kennedy Institute for Conflict Intervention at Maynooth University. She also has been engaged in various peace building projects run by the Edward Kennedy Institute.
Catherine provides restorative facilitation, conflict management coaching and mediation in workplace, community and family settings under the banner of her company Blossom Development. She develops bespoke training in Conflict Management and Communications skills for leaders, groups and organisations and uses the Enneagram Personality System as a tool for personal and professional development.
Supervisor: Dr Ian Marder, Dr Treasa Kenny
This research will explore how using restorative approaches in an organisation can impact aspects of its culture, particularly it’s conflict management and relationship practices.
In October 2018 the Council of Europe made a recommendation that quality restorative justice services be promoted and used widely across the member states (CM/Rec (2018)8).
Restorative approaches, stemming from restorative justice, proactively and responsively focuses on building positive relationships, good communications and healthy conflict management in organisations.
The Council of Europe recommendation suggests that organisations working within and along-side the Criminal Justice System use restorative approaches (RA) to build relationships, trust, and social capital amongst staff with a view to promoting a restorative culture within these organisations (Rule 61, CM/Rec (2018)8).
This project wishes to explore the feasibility of using such an approach within the Legal Aid Board, a public sector organisation within the jurisdiction of the Department of Justice.
A core hypothesis is that adoption of restorative approaches will assist in legitimising and supporting participatory change management, relationship building within and across teams, healthy conflict management, accountability and staff buy in to organisational values (Watchel, 2013).
A further hypothesis is that organisations ‘give away’ conflicts to experts (formal procedures) due to an inability to deal with them resulting in a conflict avoidant culture.
Restorative approaches have their roots in social constructionism which will be the theoretical framework underpinning the research. Restorative approaches work with stories so that untold and unknown stories unfold, and new discourses emerge. Therefore, narrative theory and participatory action research (PAR) which are aligned to this focus will be used in the research.
While there has been some research conducted on using restorative approaches in a 'whole-school-approach' in education there has not previously been research on using restorative approaches to drive cultural change and support organisational development within a public service organisation.
Publications and Conferences
She was a researcher in the seminal collaborative research project between Facing Forward and Dr Marie Keenan entitled “Sexual Trauma and Abuse: Restorative and Transformative Possibilities”. Catherine has written “Building Bridges”, an article about a Restorative Justice Initiative in Green Bay Maximum Security Prison Wisconsin for the ‘Journal of Mediation and Applied Conflict Analysis’ published online by Maynooth University. In 2018, she undertook with Barbara Walshe a consultation and a report was written on the ‘Options and Appropriate Courses of action available to Government in relation to the site of the former Mother and Baby Home, Tuam County Galway’ (April 2018). In July 2019 with Barbara Walshe, she engaged and consulted with survivors of residential institutional abuse which resulted in a report on Consultations with Survivors of Institutional Abuse on Themes and Issues to be addressed by a Survivor Led Consultation Group.
Name: Anil Ozturk
Current Funding: Graduate Teaching Scholarship (Maynooth University; 2017-2022)
Anil Ozturk is a PhD candidate and academic tutor at Maynooth University Department of Law. He has completed his undergraduate education in law at Bilkent University (Turkey), graduating with a B.A. in 2016. During his undergraduate education, Anil participated in the Erasmus exchange program and spent a semester in University of Dundee (Scotland, UK) in 2014, where his interests stemmed on the evolving nature of the legal theory.
Then, Anil has received an LL.M. degree in International and Comparative Law from Trinity College Dublin in 2017. His master’s thesis explored how pre-contractual liability is conceptualized in different legal systems and how it is addressed under European Private International Law. His current research focuses on intersection of law and robotics, including autonomous driving, robotics and privacy, and liability for personal robots.
Supervisor: Dr Brian Flanagan
Thesis Title (Provisional): Anthropomorphic Machines: Implications for Law and Society
Interactions between humans and robots are different from human interactions with other technological artefacts, as robots have higher degrees of autonomy and the ability of self-directed learning. In recent years, owing to advances in technology, robots are becoming able to perform tasks in similar ways to humans, and they are undertaking roles formerly reserved for humans, especially as interaction partners ('the robotic moment').
Furthermore, due to their growing autonomy, robots are increasingly moving beyond the oversight of their makers. In other words, they are no longer tools of human interaction but instead parties to these interactions. This situation reveals new questions on the matters of responsibility in criminal law, contractual obligations, and torts concerning the behaviors of robots; for instance on the accountability of robots in contracts and torts or punishability of robots in criminal law.
Accordingly, this research will address the legal dimensions of human-robot social interactions. It will begin by examining the features (e.g. autonomy, self-directed learning) that distinguish robots from other artefacts, and the structure of human-robot social interactions. This examination will reveal that the existing legal framework cannot respond to these interactions in ways that fair, just, and reasonable. To resolve the challenges that may emerge from the social interactions between robots and humans, this research will consider the introduction of a new form of legal entity with limited liability, and explore the potential for providing legal protection for anthropomorphic or zoomorphic robots in pari passu with that provided for animals.
'Lessons Learned from Robotics and Artificial Intelligence in a Liability Context: A Sustainability Perspective' in Angela Carpenter, Tafsir M Johansson, and Jon Skinner (eds), Sustainability in the Maritime Domain: Towards Ocean Governance and Beyond (Springer, forthcoming)
'Jurisprudence in Ancient Egypt' (Turkish, in 'Sine Qua Non -Periodical of Bilkent University Law Society' vol 1 no 2 - 2013)
'Development of LGBT Rights in Spain' (Turkish, in 'Lubunya - Periodical of Pink Life LGBTT Solidarity Association' no 11 - 2012)
‘In Good Company? The Moral Implications of Violence and Sexual Behaviours towards Sociable Robots’ (Sexualities and Gender in Postgraduate Research: A Graduate Student Round-Table Symposium, Maynooth University, Kildare, IE, 23 November 2020)
'Lessons Learned from Robotics and Artificial Intelligence in a Marine Liability Context' (SLS 111th Annual Conference - Graduate Stream, The University of Exeter, The Society of Legal Scholars, Exeter, UK, 2 September 2020) [held virtually]
'Anthropomorphic Machines: Implications of Human-Robot Social Interactions for Law and Society' (International Conference - Transformative Technologies: Legal and Ethical
Challenges of the 21st Century, The Law Faculty of the University of Banja Luka, The Center for the Study of Bioethics, The European Division of the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics, Banja Luka, BiH, 7 February 2020)
'Beware of the Friendly Stranger: Legal Implications of Human-Robot Social Interactions' (Selected Presentations, Summer School on the Regulation of Robotics & AI in Europe: Legal, Ethical and Economic Implications, Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies of Pisa, Pisa, IT, 6 July 2019)
'Legal Personhood for Social Robots?' (Department of Law Research Seminar Series, Maynooth University, Kildare, IE, 12 March 2018)
: Ethan Shattock
Current funding details: Department of Law studentship
Thesis supervisors: Dr. Maria Murphy and Dr. Aisling McMahon
Electoral disinformation online presents an urgent threat to contemporary electoral democracy. New digital platforms allow anti-democratic actors to manipulate public opinion by spreading false and harmful content. In influencing the outcome of elections, the dissemination of contemporary disinformation must be viewed by legislators as a form of digital electoral interference. While the spread of false information is not new in democracy, social media platforms allow information to be targeted at a rapid speed and with alarming efficiency. This urgent problem is exacerbated by the lack of clear, consistent, and recursive legal rules in the European Union's legal framework for how social media companies should tackle harmful but legal content on their platforms.
While legislators acknowledge disinformation as a problem for democracy, there has been little focus on how human rights are affected. The right to free elections is protected under Article 3 of Protocol 1 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). The spread of disinformation threatens this right, as voters who are systematically targeted with disinformation can vote in elections on the basis of deliberately distorted and falsified digital content. While legal protections are needed to prevent this problem from growing, these protections must also factor in freedom of expression under Article 10 of the ECHR, a right that allows citizens to freely receive information and ideas in the run up to elections.
Informed by relevant case law of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), this thesis outlines how legislation can combat electoral disinformation while balancing these interrelated fundamental rights. In doing so, existing legal frameworks are critically evaluated, and carefully considered solutions are proposed in light of the tests, patterns of reasoning, and decisions of the Strasbourg Court when mediating the right to free elections with the right to freedom of expression. Factoring in the important role that Ireland plays as a European hub for social media giants, this research contributes novel legal insights that can inform legislators in responding to this pressing threat whilst ensuring that legislative proposals remain congruent with Ireland's relevant commitments under the ECHR.
E Shattock, ‘The Electoral Commission, Disinformation, and Freedom of Expression’, Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly (19 Jan 2021).
E Shattock, "How does the Digital Services Act (DSA) address disinformation & fake news? RTE Brainstorm (Jan 2021).
E Shattock, ‘An electoral commission is vital to tackle fake news’, Business Post (10 June 2020).
E Shattock, ‘Is it time for Europe to reassess internet intermediary liability in light of coronavirus misinformation?' European Law Blog (20 April 2020).
E Shattock, ‘COVID-19 Highlights Why Disinformation is a Rights-Based Issue’, Irish Council for Civil Liberties (20 March 2020).
E Shattock, 'Why Disinformation and Fake News Are Electoral Issues', RTE Brainstorm (30 Jan 2020).
E Shattock, ‘Fake News, Free Elections, and Free Expression: Irish Policy Responses to Disinformation Online’, Revista Publicum, v. 5, n. 2, p. 201-231, 2019.
E Shattock, ‘Protecting Free Elections and Free Expression in Irish Responses to Fake News Online’, Dublin Law and Politics Review, September 24th 2019.
'Reform of the EU liability regime for online intermediaries: The forthcoming digital services act’, (European Parliamentary Research Service), 25 May 2020- Cited at (n 71).
‘Inquiry of the Select Joint Committee on Foreign Interference through Social Media’ (Law Council of Australia) 25 March 2020- Cited at (n 153).
Winner, Highly Commendably Paper Prize, Leicester Law School Conference, June 2020.
Winner, Jury Prize, Dublin Law and Politics Review Writing Competition, May 2020.
Current Funding: John and Pat Hume Doctoral Award 2020
Stephanie graduated from Carlow Institute of Technology with an Honours Bachelor of Law (LL.B) in 2018. Stephanie then went on to complete a Masters in Arts Degree (Comparative Criminology and Criminal Justice) at Maynooth University’s Department of Law and graduated with first class honours. Her MA thesis explored the link between addiction and drug-related crime in her local community of Athy Co. Kildare. Upon completion of her master’s degree Stephanie began working in the University as a research assistant and a criminal law tutor. In 2020, Stephanie was awarded the John and Pat Hume Doctoral Award by the Department of Law. Stephanie has a keen interest and passion for further and higher education with a specific focus on quality assurance and equal access opportunities. This year, she was invited to become a member of Kildare and Wicklow Education and Training Board’s (KWETB) Quality Control Council which oversees the planning, coordination, quality, development and improvement of all aspects of further education and training offerings of the ETB. She is also a current member of a Kilkenny Carlow Education and Training Board (KCETB) steering committee which was formed to oversee their inaugural review in partnership with Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI). Stephanie regularly speaks publicly about her own experiences of further and higher education and training. In 2020, She made a speech at the launch of SOLAS new five-year strategy alongside Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Mr Simon Harris at Richmond Barracks in Dublin. In September 2020, she was on the front page of the Irish Times newspaper and the main feature of their ‘Smart Choices’ magazine. Stephanie has also spoken on local and national radio stations such as, 2FM, FM104 and Spirt Radio. In addition, she was invited to be panellist at the College Connections webinar as part of College Awareness Week 2020.
Thesis Title: Understanding the needs and perspectives of domestic violence victims in Ireland
Supervisor: Dr David Doyle
Stephanie’s research investigates victims’ perspectives of domestic abuse in Ireland. It is a qualitative study focusing specifically on female victims of domestic abuse. The findings of the research will be used to ascertain victims’ perspectives on domestic violence law and policy in Ireland, with a view to informing victim-centred policy development. The research also seeks to establish whether the existing legal mechanisms are successful in their aims to deter and provide redress for domestic abuse victims, and to explore how victims experience those mechanisms in practice. From a disciplinary perspective, the research comprises an innovative socio-legal study of victims’ experiences of domestic violence law and policy in Ireland and will be of international interest.
: Léa Urzel
Current Funding: ERC Project DANCING (ERC Grant n° 864182)
Léa Urzel is a PhD student with the DANCING research project. She holds an LL.B. from the University of Nantes (France) and studied European and International Law at the University of Helsinki (Finland). In 2018, she completed an LL.M. in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy at the National University of Ireland, Galway. She carried out traineeships at the Office of the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, contributing to a chapter of "The UN Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty" and at the NGO Humanity & Inclusion. Prior to starting her PhD studies, Léa also joined the European Commission's Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion in Brussels as a trainee.
Thesis Title: Investigating the Disability Dimension of Cultural Production in the European Union
Supervisor: Prof. Delia Ferri
Her PhD research focuses on the disability dimension of cultural production in the European Union. It intends to investigate the dynamics involving cultural producers and consumers, which influence the participation of persons with disabilities in cultural life. In doing so, the research will address how disability features in the production of cultural goods and services, and the extent to which persons with disabilities are included in the production process. By considering both cultural producers in general and cultural producers with disabilities, it is intended to provide insights into the dynamics of cultural production at European and national level.
Funding: Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship (2019-2022)
Thesis Title: A feasibility study on the introduction of a community court in Ireland
Supervisor: Dr Louise Kennefick and Dr David Doyle
Community courts have been promoted as a best practice example in how to blend therapeutic jurisprudence, accountability, and rehabilitation in a community setting. This court model is said to achieve these aims by responding to a charge with immediacy, using prison as a last resort, linking clients with relevant services, and following completion, striking the offence from the offender’s criminal record. However, there are also numerous criticisms associated with community courts. It can be considered coercive to require an offender to plead guilty in order to be granted access to the court and to place an offender in treatment when the only alternative is a criminal conviction. It is possible for an offender to receive a sanction through this court model for a crime that a traditional court may have struck out. It is also argued that access to the services should be readily available without any court involvement.
With consideration to the above, this project will examine the existing community court in Melbourne, Australia and the closed community court in the United Kingdom with a view to discovering whether such a court model would work in Ireland.
Niamh Wade graduated from Maynooth University with a first-class honours LLB Law Degree in 2017. During her undergraduate, Niamh was very involved with the Free Legal Advice Centre in the university. Niamh graduated with a first-class honours from the MA in Comparative Criminology and Criminal Justice in 2018 having received the Taught Masters Scholarship. Her thesis was titled: ‘A Critical Analysis of the Proposed Measures to Deal with White-Collar Crime and Corporate Manslaughter in Ireland: Plus Ça Change?’ During the MA, she completed an internship with the Irish Penal Reform Trust. In 2018, Niamh was awarded the John and Pat Hume Scholarship to conduct her PhD research project under the supervision of Dr Louise Kennefick. The research project is titled ‘A feasibility study on the introduction of a community court in Ireland.’ In 2019, Niamh was awarded the Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship to continue this research. Niamh has lectured on the Advanced Criminal Law and Law of Evidence modules and tutored on the Policing and Sentencing modules.
RTÉ Brainstorm article: ‘Are community courts the answer to local low-level crime?’, published in December 2019.
Irish Criminology Research Network blog post: ‘The Revolving Door of Problem-Solving Court Popularity’, published in February 2021.
Probation Quarterly article: ‘Understanding Probation Supervision in Ireland: What Can We Learn From An Historical Approach?’, Louise Kennefick, Deirdre Healy and Niamh Wade, forthcoming in December 2021.
Irish Probation Journal article: ‘Helping, Hurting, Holding and Hands Off’: Preliminary Findings from an Oral History of Probation Client Experiences of Supervision in Ireland’, Louise Kennefick, Deirdre Healy and Niamh Wade, currently under review.
North South Irish Criminology Conference Contribution: ‘Early Histories of Probation Practice in Ireland: ‘Plus Ça Change, Plus C'est la Même Chose’, presented in Dublin, Ireland with Dr Louise Kennefick in 2018.
European Society of Criminology Conference Contribution: ‘A feasibility study on the introduction of a community court in Ireland’, presented in Ghent, Belgium in 2019.
North South Irish Criminology Conference Contribution: ‘A feasibility study on the introduction of a community court in Ireland’, presented in Cork, Ireland in 2019.
European Society of Criminology Conference Contribution: ‘A feasibility study on the introduction of a community court in Ireland: Methodology’, presented online in 2020.
European Society of Criminology Conference Contribution: ‘Lessons from the Neighbourhood Justice Centre in Australia’, presented online in 2021.
European Society of Criminology Conference Contribution: ‘An oral history of probation in Ireland: preliminary findings on client perspectives’, presented online with Dr Louise Kennefick and Dr Deirdre Healy in 2021.
Funding: Science Foundation Ireland Centre for Research Training (ADVANCE CRT)
Thesis Title: `The Regulation of Artificial Intelligence in the European Union: Assessing Whether the Proposed Legal Framework can Foster the Development of Compliant AI Systems that Respond to Societal Challenges and Respect Fundamental Rights`
Supervisor: Dr. Maria Helen Murphy & Professor Aphra Kerr
Biography: Gizem is a PhD student with the ADVANCE CRT research project. She holds an LL.B. from Marmara University (Turkey). Then she carried out internship and she has been a member of the Ankara Bar Association (Turkey) since 2014. In 2020, she completed Master of Human Rights at the Ankara University Human Rights Centre (Turkey). Her master’s thesis explored the right to free elections in the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. During the master program, in 2017, she participated in `Ethnicity, Conflict, and Inequality in Global Perspective Program by Brown International Advanced Research Institutes (BIARI)` at Brown University. She also carried out consultation for ` Anti-discrimination and Equal Treatment Right Project` at Public Administration Institute for Turkey and the Middle East (TODAIE).
Besides academic studies, she worked for the Directorate General of Civil Aviation Authority (DGCA) under the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure of the Republic of Turkey as an aviation expert for six years. Her expertise thesis is about ` Liability for damages caused by Civil Unmanned Aircraft. ` In addition, she served as Deputy National Continuous Monitoring Coordinator (NCMC) of Turkey in the field of civil aviation safety oversight systems, and National Coordinator of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on Continuous Monitoring Approach (CMA) activities of the Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP). During this period, she represented Turkey in many international events and meetings, such as International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and D-8 Organization for Economic Cooperation.
Her current research focuses on artificial intelligence, human rights, drone law, and data protection.
Thesis Title: Restorative Justice in the Nigerian Correctional Service: Exploring the Implementation of the Nigerian Correctional Service Act, 2019.
Supervisor: Dr Ian Marder, Dr Joe Garrihy.
The Nigerian Corrections Act, 2019 mandated prisons to provide a range of restorative processes involving victims, both sentenced and remanded offenders, and where applicable, community representatives. In addition, this Act mandated the correctional service to liaise with the courts and other relevant agencies in the provision of these measures. This development is critical to criminal justice reform in Nigeria with specific regards to the institutionalization of offenders, with prisons overcrowded and an absence of treatment programs for both adult and juvenile offenders as well as victims. As importantly, there is a pressing need for a juvenile justice system to form diversion programs providing restorative processes with treatment outcomes that focus on preventing reoffending.
The aim of this research is to explore the implementation of the restorative justice provisions in the Nigerian Correctional Services Act, 2019. This will be achieved by exploring the attitudes and experiences of victims, offenders, and community members who participated in restorative processes, and professionals involved in the implementation of the Act. The study will contribute to the criminological knowledge on victim and offender experiences of restorative justice as well as informing policy and legislation in the implementation of restorative justice programs in Nigeria and similar jurisdictions.
The study will also develop the burgeoning literature that contributes an African perspective to the wider debates in support of and against restorative justice and criminal justice reform globally.
Adedamola Adeniran is a PhD candidate and was a visiting lecturer in criminology at the National Institute of Police Studies in Abuja, Nigeria where he trained law enforcement officers on crime analysis, and restorative justice in law enforcement. He has completed a Bachelors degree in criminology at Colorado State University in Pueblo, USA and a Masters of Science in Criminal Justice and law enforcement at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona USA . Damola is a restorative justice practioner and social justice philosopher. In 2020, he was appointed the National coordinator of a Coalition of Ride sharing Associations in Nigeria called the National Coalition of Ride Sharing Partners( NACORP). He developed a social justice for drivers theoretical framework as the core principle of the organization to help achieve the organizational mission, goals and objectives. As the National coordinator of NACORP, He is responsible for the development of programs and activities that are to be implemented by the 12 committees which make up the structure of the coalition. Damola continues to fight for the social justice of ride sharing drivers in Nigeria through organizing deliberative forums with stakeholders, litigation and lobbying for the drivers bill of rights, and unionization. The coalition has recently expanded to 15 states in Nigeria with the aim of establishing its presence in more than 25 states by 2023. Damola and his team are working collaboratively to ensure that the Coalition unionize by 2024 through the repeal of both the Labour and Transport Acts.
Damola’s inspiration and passion for restorative justice practices in criminal justice stems from his lived experience as a youth offender. He is of the firm belief that desistance is possible in youth criminology through restorative justice outcomes that are focused on preventing reoffending and repairing the harm caused to the victim and the community through apology, restitution, and forgiveness. Damola’s research focus is targeted at decongesting the prison system in Nigeria through restorative justice processes as a form of diversion programs for awaiting trial inmates on remand. He believes that the rehabilitation of offenders is an on going process of which healing is the end result. Damola has argued that criminal justice systems must ensure the availability of structures in prisons that will foster the rehabilitation of offenders through educational programs, drugs treatment, and mental health programs. In addition, he notes that reintegration programs must be tailored on a case by case basis in efforts to understanding the root causes of crime, and to help offenders return back into the community post release to prevent reoffending, and to help them become responsible people in the society.
Thesis Title: Domestic homicide in Ireland: an in-depth study showing how previous acts of abuse are a contributing factor to homicide. Can further fatalities be prevented with reformed legal responses?
Supervisor: Dr Sinéad Ring
In recent years, legislation has been enacted to criminalise domestic violence in Ireland and the UK. However, not all reports of domestic violence lead to criminal convictions. Rates of attrition are high and the potential of domestic homicide by a family member or a former or current intimate partner is consistently there. As the most common risk of domestic homicide is previous incidents of domestic violence, this socio-legal research will explore the many facets of domestic violence, what is it and why it occurs and the effect it has on society. A comparative analysis between Ireland and the UK will show how policy and legislation respond to criminalise domestic violence offences, also showing where each country can improve by reviewing their current strategies. Case studies of domestic homicides will also be discussed and analysed in great depth to see how each was dealt with, showing room for improvement. This project intends to investigate if the use of risk assessments after a disclosure of abuse will increase the safety and protection of a victim from their abuser; along with the use of domestic homicide reviews which are yet to be established in Ireland.
I returned to education in 2015. I began by completing a higher diploma in Drugs, Counselling Theory and Intervention. I progressed via a pathway to then complete my undergraduate bachelor’s degree in social science (Hons), both were in UCD. After this, I then proceeded to complete my MA in Comparative Criminology and Criminal Justice earning a First-Class Honours. My dissertation was titled ‘The repositioning of domestic violence as a criminal offence in Ireland from a historical to present day context. Is the Irish Criminal Justice System failing victims of domestic violence?’
Chloë Cass BL
Thesis Title: Left out in the cold: the vulnerable plaintiff in the Irish Civil System
Supervisor: Dr Sinéad Ring
Victimhood in Ireland has a particular legal meaning. A victim is 'a natural person who has suffered harm including physical, mental or emotional harm or economic loss, which was directly caused by an offence’.1 With this title comes a package of legal rights which recognise victimhood, allow for active participation and confer protections such as a right to avoid contact with the offender. If you have suffered a harm and it is not recognised as a crime, you will not attract victim status. Given that the same harm can give rise to both a tort and a crime, it begs the question “Should a plaintiff be recognised as having victim status?”.
This project will consider what justifies a distinction between criminal law and tort law, which in turn legitimates victims of crime gaining legal protection but not victims of torts. It will propose an alternative framework using theories of vulnerability 2, harm 3 and embodiment 4.
Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Act 2017, S 2(1).
Stiina Loytomaki, 'Law and Memory: The Politics Of Victimhood' (2012) 12 Griffith Law Review,1.
Joanne Conaghan, 'Law, Harm And Redress: A Feminist Perspective' (2002) 22 Legal Studies, 322
Lauren Freeman, 'Embodied Harm: A Phenomenological Engagement With Stereotype Threat' (2017) 40 Human Studies.
Chloë is a practising barrister, lecturer and tutor. She has a mixed practice on the Eastern Circuit, with a special focus towards personal injuries law, family law and language rights. Chloë graduated with a BCL in Law and Irish from Maynooth University and a Barrister at Law Degree from King’s Inns. She lectures the Legal Diploma in City Colleges as well as the Diploma in Corporate Fraud Investigation. Chloë has also delivered guest lectures in the Law Society and TU Dublin, as well as giving CPD’s for CMG (2021, 2022) and the Bar of Ireland(2021). She tutors in King’s Inns in a variety of subjects including Human Rights, Jurisprudence and Constitutional Law. Chloë has previously tutored in Maynooth and UCD as well as acting as a moot judge for Maynooth and Foras na Gaeilge.
Name: Shauna Philomena Armstrong
Funding: TUSLA Child and Family Agency Further Education and Training Award
Thesis Title: Children in Care and Their Overrepresentation in the Criminal Justice System: An Exploration of the Intersection Between the Risk Factor Prevention Paradigm, the Care System and Involvement with the Criminal Justice System
Supervisor: Dr. Etain Quigley
To fate, there has been no specific research in Ireland which focuses on the link between the care system, the Risk Factor Prevention Paradigm, specific risk and protective factors for young people in care. This is important as identifying these risk and protective factors that are specific to young people in care will ultimately contribute to evidenced based policy developments which will subsequently assist with reducing the overrepresentation of young people in care within the criminal justice system. The Risk Factor Prevention Paradigm ultimately is a tool used to identify the key risk factors for offending to implement prevention methods used to counteract them. With such an approach being used, not only to identify variables to be targeted, but also to identify persons to be targeted by an intervention programme. Typically, things such as low intelligence, low empathy, impulsiveness, family problems, abuse and neglect are identified as factors likely to put a person at greater risk of getting into trouble. As such, it is fair to say that children in care are automatically placed into this category of at risk individuals by the sheer nature of being in the care environment. Therefore, it can be argued that the Risk Factor Prevention Paradigm is a blunt instrument to use in relation to children in care. As such, I intend to use the Risk Factor Prevention Paradigm as inspiration to develop a more applicable risk and protective model that is more sensitive to the particular circumstances of children in the care system.
Having spent 12 years in the care system herself, Shauna offers a unique perspective to her research. Shauna has spent the last few years being a strong advocate for young people in the care system by telling her story so that others do not feel alone in their struggle. Shauna set out on her journey to incite change in the care system by firstly obtaining a PLC in Legal Studies from Drogheda Institute of Further Education. She then obtained a BCL Law and Criminology Undergraduate Degree from Maynooth University and most recently, she obtained a MA in Comparative Criminology and Criminal Justice Postgraduate Degree from Maynooth University. Shauna actively participates in both policy and practical areas of the care system. She sits on an Advisory Committee to the Board of Management at TUSLA HQ, she is a member of the National Children in the Care of the State and the Education System Working Group at DCU, and sits on the North County Dublin Foster Carer Review Board. Shauna also holds a position in the Department of Justice where she deals with Tribunals and Commissions of Inquiry.
Name: Mick O' Keeffe
Thesis Title: Young People and the Crime – Terror continuum in Ireland: A critical Analysis of the recruitment of children to Armed Groups in Ireland.
Supervisor: Professor Claire Hamilton
Terrorist groups and organised criminals have a long history of exploiting young people. Global trends highlight that youth radicalisation, recruitment and utilisation are major issues and there is little doubt that these are becoming real concerns here in Ireland. In recent years Irish society has witnessed first-hand the terrifying results of the exploitation of children at the hands of Irish armed groups. This research will examine the crime terror continuum as it exists in Ireland and critically analyse the myriad of complex reasons why children are recruited by armed groups.
Mick is a PHD candidate and a member of An Garda Síochána with 19 years service. In 2000 he graduated from Mary Immaculate College with a BA (Hons) and in 2001 he attended NUI Galway graduating with a HDip in Education. He left life as a teacher to study policing in Templemore Garda college graduating in 2003. In 2004 he received a BA in Public Management from the IPA. In 2006 to 2007 he studied in New York receiving an MA from the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. In 2011 he received an LLB in Irish Law before studying at the Kings Inns receiving a BL in 2013. In 2018 he graduated from the University of St Andrews receiving an M.Litt in Terrorism Studies. His current research focuses on the crime terror continuum here in Ireland and the recruitment of children to armed groups.