UCL Laws Staff

UCL Laws People

Pascoe Pleasence   PASCOE PLEASENCE
Professor of Empirical Legal Studies
BA (Hons) 1987 (Lond.), MPhil 1989 (Cantab), DipLaw 1990 (City), Barrister 1991 (Middle Temple)

Contact details
e-mail: p.pleasence@ucl.ac.uk

Professor Pascoe Pleasence is Professor of Empirical Legal Studies and co-director of the Centre for Empirical Legal Studies in the UCL Faculty of Laws. Until recently he was Academic and Scientific Advisor at the Legal Services Commission, and continues to advise a range of governmental bodies in the United Kingdom and overseas. He is a fellow of the Royal Statistical Society, a member of the International Group of Experts on the Measurement of Access to Justice, a member of the International Working Group on Civil Justice and Dispute Resolution, a member of the International Working Group on the Legal Profession, a member of the International Legal Aid Group, a former Head of the Legal Services Research Centre, London, and a former Government Social Research Head of Profession. His work has an international profile. He is in regular demand to speak about his research methods and findings in the United Kingdom and overseas.

Professor Pleasence is a leading expert in empirical legal research methodologies. His substantive areas of research interest span the civil and criminal justice fields, but he has a particular interest in the public's understanding and experience of law, access to justice and decision making. He was responsible for the design and implementation of the English and Welsh Civil and Social Justice Survey (and its successor, the English and Welsh Civil and Social Justice Panel Survey), a large scale nationally representative survey of the public's experience of civil justice issues. All of his projects adopt an inter-disciplinary approach, and involve collaboration with researchers in fields such as criminology, economics, epidemiology, political science and psychology. He has published widely in the field of empirical legal studies, both in English and Japanese, and his work has been cited by the House of Lords in Callery v. Gray [2002] UKHL 28. His most influential work, a second edition of Causes of Action: Civil Law and Social Justice (2006: TSO), has been central to access to justice policy development in England and Wales, and is widely cited in relation to legal aid policy around the world.


Professor Pleasence's recent publications include:


Book Chapters / Journal Articles



Professor Pleasence is Convenor of 'Law in the Real World: An Introduction to Empirical Legal Studies', an LLM course that introduces empirical social science research methods and the product of empirical enquiry to graduate students.

Professor Pleasence leads empirical social science research methods training for research students in the Faculty of Laws.

PhD Supervision
Professor Pleasence welcomes approaches for supervision from prospective PhD students. His current students are Yu-Shan Chang (integrated legal services), Catrina Denvir (online legal services) and Ronan Kennedy (information feedback in environmental regulation).

Professor Pleasence is currently leading the ‘Paths to Justice: A Past, Present and Future Roadmap’ project, funded by the Nuffield Foundation. This project will bring together the substantive and methodological lessons of ‘legal needs’ studies conducted around the world over the past two decades.

This page last modified 23 January, 2014 by Laws Webmaster