UCL Laws Research Degree Programmes

Recently Completed PhD theses in the Law Department

Dr Catrina Denvir What is the Net Worth? Young People, Civil Justice and the Internet
Dr Despoina Mantzari Appeals from Utilities Regulators in the US and the UK - What are the Limits of Judicial Review of Economic Evidence?
Dr Joseph Spooner Personal insolvency law in the modern consumer credit societ: English and comparative perspectives
Dr Carrie Bradshaw Corporations, responsibility and the environment
Dr Georges Kratsas Sovereign wealth funds: their operation and the economic, political and legal responses
Dr Paolo Siciliani Confusopoly: a special case of the 'Oligopoly Problem' - implications for consumer and competition policy
Dr Zampia Vernadaki EU civil procedure and access to justice after the Lisbon Treaty: perspectives for a coherent approach
Dr Danai Azaria Treaties on transit of energy via pipelines and countermeasures
Dr Matthew Nicholson The 'idea' of international law: a critical theory
Dr Abdul Gofur Rethinking Corruption
Dr Noam Peleg
The Child's Right to Development
Dr Bolanle Adebola
Corporate Rescue and the Nigerian Insolvency Law
Dr Katherine Leivesley
The reform of the prohibition against the giving of financial assistance for the acquisition of shares by a third party in a transaction involving a public limited liability company
Dr Abenaa Owusu-Bempah
Penalising defendant non-cooperation in the criminal process and the implications for English criminal procedure

Tamryn Torricke-Barton M.phil

An anthropological analysis of interpersonal violence.

Dr Shaun Larcom

A law and economic analysis of legal pluralism in Papua New Guinea

Dr Arman Sarvarian


Professional Ethics at the International Bar

Dr Grietje Baars

Law(yers) congealing capitalism: On the (im)possibility of restraining business in conflict through international criminal law
Grietje has shared her experience as a part-time research student and gives some useful advice to prospective students.

Dr Jaruprapa Rakpong

Regulatory aspects of EU-Thai trade relations in the area of food safety

Dr Nicholas Stamatakis

Restorative Justice Behind Bars: Exploring the Applicability of Restorative Justice in Custodial Settings
Dr Javier Tapia
Analysing economic regulation through institutions, finance and public law.

Dr Olivia Woolley

Developing a system of ecological governance: a legal framework for determining offshore wind energy's role in the formation and implementation of an ecologically coherent energy policy.

Karla Pérez Portilla

Redressing discrimination through expressive means: weaknesses and potential of anti-discrimination law



Stuart Lakin has been awarded his PhD for his thesis, The Moral Reading of the British Constitution, which offers a Dworkinian account of British constitutional theory and practice. He was supervised by Professor Jeffrey Jowell and Professor Dawn Oliver. His examiners were Professors Trevor Allan and Professor Richard Rawlings. Stuart is now a lecturer at the University of Reading, and he continues to offer tutorials and seminars in public law and jurisprudence at UCL. The first chapter of his thesis was published in the Oxford Journal of Legal Studies in Dec 09.

Meena Bhamra has been awarded her PhD for her thesis, The Challenges of Justice: Constitutionalism, Pluralism and British Diversity, which offers new ways of thinking about diversity in Britain. It constructs a global normative framework which impacts upon justice, law and constitutionalism. She was supervised by Professor Alison Diduck with Professor Dawn Oliver, Professor Stephen Guest and Mr Colm O'Cinneide.


Chris Chen has been awarded his PhD for his thesis, The Contractual Nature of Derivative Transactions and Certain Regulatory Issues. which examined the character of certain derivative instruments and the exchanges on which they were traded and also examined the gaming background of the transactions. He was supervised by Professor Michael Bridge and the examiners were Professors Robert Merkin (Southampton) and Alastair Hudson (QMUL). In August 2008 this was already a topical subject; recent disruption in the derivative markets have made it more so.

Aurel Sari has been awarded his PhD for his thesis ‘The Jurisdictional Immunities of Visiting Forces under Public International law: A Case Study of the European Security and Defence Policy’. His Examiners, Professor Christopher Greenwood, QC, (now UK candidate for election to the International Court of Justice) and Professor Craig Barker, described the thesis as outstanding. The following day, Aurel started work as a Lecturer on the Cornwall Campus of Exeter University. He was supervised by Professors Eileen Denza and Catherine Redgwell. For Eileen Denza, Aurel was the seventh and last PhD to complete over the last six years – all are in posts ranging from the Diplomatic Service of Thailand, IBM Vienna and the European Court of Justice to academia, and almost all the theses are already published in whole or in part.

Shin Wei Ng has passed her examination for the award of the degree of Ph.D. in Laws.  She faced two eminent professors in the field of Chinese Law – Prof. Michael Palmer of SOAS and Geoffrey MacCormack of University of Aberdeen – and they have passed her dissertation without revisions. Shin's research topic considered Community Forest Management Regime: A Case Study of China. She was supervised by Professors Tim Swanson and Richard Macrory.

Tomas Vial successfully defended his PhD thesis entitled 'A Moral and Constitutional Argument for a Right to Information in Chile's Constitution'.  He argued that Chilean lawyers should take a Dworkinian interpretive approach to the construction of legal questions of public importance to understand how a moral and legal right to certain types of public information might persuasively be extrapolated from fundamental democratic concepts of equality and liberty.  What is particularly interesting is that while Tomas wrote his thesis, Chilean constitutional legal practice moved in the direction that he initially argued it should.  It was extremely interesting to  hear his account in his viva of the difficulties in Chile of overcoming initial resistance to the idea that a general right to equality was connected to a rigidly understood conception of rights as rights to property.  Tomas is Professor Stephen Guest's fifth successful doctoral candidate in four years, and all five PhDs are now in full-time academic positions

Maria Farrajota has been recommended for the award of her PhD. Her thesis is entitled 'The Principle of Cooperation in the Law of International Watercourses'. In the context of the law of international watercourses the general obligation of States to cooperate and the procedural rules it comprises have a crucial role in implementing the principles of equitable and reasonable cooperation and of diligent prevention of transboundary harm. Maria studied for a year in UCL's Department of Geography and adopted an interdisciplinary approach in her thesis in order to assist the understanding of technical questions presented to international lawyers dealing with shared water resources. She has already published papers on the topics covered by her thesis - including a chapter in 'Water Resources and International Law' published by the Hague Academy of International Law.

Paul Kim (now Behrens) has been awarded his PhD for his thesis, Diplomatic Interference under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. Paul is now a lecturer at Leicester University and he has co-published along with Ralph Henham a book called 'The Criminal Law of Genocide'.

Elizabeth De Santo successfully defended her PhD thesis, Offshore marine conservation in the NE Atlantic: opportunities and challenges for the developing regime. Examiners Tim O'Riordan (School of Environmental Sciences, UEA) and Catherine Redgwell (Faculty of Laws, UCL) were particularly impressed with how she thoroughly undertook and combined legal, implementation and stakeholder perception analyses. She has only a few minor revisons to make. Elizabeth is now working as International Marine Protected Area Projects Coordinator with the IUCN in Washington DC. She was co-supervised by Philippe Sands QC (Faculty of Laws, UCL) and Pete Jones (Department of Geography, UCL).

Ivana Radacic has been awarded her PhD for her thesis entitled Feminist Analysis of the ECHR: A Proposal for a More Inclusive Jurisprudence. This analyses the ECHR system of protection of human rights from a feminist perspective, to assess whether, and to what extent, the main feminist critiques of international human rights jurisprudence apply to the ECHR system. Her reserch examines in particular the concpetualisation of the docrine of state responsibility (as interpreted through jurisprudence on Articles 3 and 8) and principle of non-discrimination. She has proposed how ECHR should be interpreted to ensure the effective protection of human rights of women and other margainlised groups. Ivana held an Overseas Reasearch Award and Frederick Bonnart-Brauthal Scholarship. She was supervised by Ms Alison Diduck and Dr Basal Cali.


Dr Charlie Garnjana-Goonchorn has been awarded his PhD. This thesis concerned a comparative study of evidential procedures of international courts and tribunals. He was supervised by Professor Philippe Sands QC & Richard Gardiner.

Dr Irit Ronen-Mevorach successfully completed her PhD, under the supervision of Professor Ian Fletcher. A paper derived from her Doctoral  research into global models for cross-border insolvency was awarded the 2005 gold medal prize for research in international insolvency by the International Insolvency Institute, and Oxford University Press has accepted for publication a book based on her doctoral work. She is currently in her second year in post as a Lecturer in Law at the Nottingham University Law School.

Dr Emma Witbooi has been awarded her PhD for her thesis on fisheries and sustainable development, with particular reference to fisheries agreements between the EU and West African states.

Dr Theodore Konstadinides has been awarded his PhD for his thesis, 'Towards a Clearer Delimitation of Internal European Community Competences'. His supervisors were Professors David O'Keeffe and Dawn Oliver, whilst he worked closely with Professor Michael Dougan and Dr Diamond Ashiagbor. Theodore is a lecturer in EU law at the University of Surrey. His monograph Division of Powers in EU Law: The Delimitation of Internal Competences between the EU & the Member States, has been published by Kluwer (May 2009).

Dr Yasuhiro Shigeta has been awarded his PhD. His research was on standard setting, compliance control and law development by international arbitral, judicial and quasi-judicial procedures in the field of international environmental law. His supervisor was Professor Philippe Sands QC. Yasuhiro is an associate Professor at the Osaka Gakuin University, Japan.

Dr Jyrki Knuutinen has been awarded the Degree of PhD for his thesis, ‘The Equal Value of Shares in Company Law’. The focus of his thesis is on analysing the norms of company law governing shares, shareholders’ rights, and share value. He argues that the equality of shares is one of the general principles of English company law, and he proposes the law must support the equal value of shares as they rank equally, ie shareholders have the same rights in a company. Jyrki was supervised by Professor John Lowry and Doctor Philip Rawlings. He currently works as a Legal Adviser at the Ministry of Finance in Finland.

Dr Octavio Ferraz has been awarded his PhD for his thesis, "An insurance model to the justiciability of economic and social rights." The thesis discusses the usual legitimacy and institutional capacityobjections to the justiciability of economic and social rights and propose a model of justiciability based on Ronald Dworkin's distributive justice theory and his "prudent insurer ideal". Octavio was supervised by Professor Stephen Guest and Professor Dawn Oliver. He is now an assistant Professor in the Law School at Warwick University. His research interests are in the field of law and development, especially the impact of law in social justice, and comparative and international human rights, particularly in the area of economic and social rights and the role of courts in the enforcement of those rights.

Dr Dario Milo has been awarded a PhD for his thesis, "The Constitutionalisation of the Law of Defamation''. The thesis deals with balancing the right to reputation against the rights to freedom of speech and the press under the laws of England, South Africa, and the United States. Supervised by Eric Barendt, it was regarded as an outstanding contribution to commentary on this area of law by the two examiners, Professors David Feldman, Cambridge University, and Conor Gearty (LSE). Its high quality has now been recognised by Oxford University Press, which intends to publish a revised version of it, perhaps next year. Dario Milo has returned to South Africa, where he plans to work as a lawyer in the areas of media and libel law, and to teach at Wits University in Johannesburg.

Dr. Emmanuel Voyiakis has been awarded a PhD for this thesis. His thesis was on the right to reasonable expectations at international law. His supervisors were Professor Maurice Mendelson, QC and Professor Stephen Guest. He is currently a lecturer at the Department of Law Brunel University where his research interest encompass Public International Law, Contract & Tort, Jurisprudence, Moral & Political Philosophy.

Dr Platima Atthakor was awarded a PhD for thesis on the liberalisation of trade in telecoms services. The thesis analyzed the liberalization of trade in telecommunications services in the context of the interplay between the multilateral rules of the World Trade Organization and the domestic law and policies of the USA and India. It concluded that full liberalization of telecommunications services provides a better technological backbone to all economies which in turn will provide an engine for growth and a channel for greater development in other economic areas. Platima is working in the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Bangkok.

Dr George Letsas (now teaching at UCL Laws)
George wrote his thesis on the philosophical foundations of Dworkins' theory of truth and objectivity and the developing Dworkonian approach to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) case-law. In 2004 he was jointly awarded the Georg Schwarzenberger Prize in International Law by the Institute for Advanced Legal Studies, in recognition of his outstanding scholarship in the field.

Dr Annalisa Meloni:
Annalisa wrote her thesis on EU Visa Policy: Competence, Convergence and Consistency. An updated version, Visa Policy within the European Union Structure, was published as a book by Kluwer (2005), ISBN: 3-540-28970-4. Annalisa is a lecturer at the University of East London where here teaching and research interests focus on the European Union's laws and policies on immigration, asylum and external border controls and EU Constitutional Law.

Dr Urfan Khaliq:
Urfan wrote his thesis on Ethical Foreign Policies of the EU: A legal Appraisal. Urfan is a lecturer at Cardiff University since 1996. An updated version of his thesis is being published by Cambridge University Press. He is an Advocate of the Punjab High Court and a member of the Research Consultants Panel at Matrix Chambers, Gray's Inn, London. His research and teaching interests encompass: EU Law, Public International Law, International Human Rights Law and apsects of Islamic Law.

Dr Eva Pils:
Eva Pils wrote her thesis on the relationship of mediation and adjudication with justice: the example of dispute resolution in China. She was supervised by Professor Stephen Guest and Professor Michael Palmer (at SOAS). After her year as a Hauser Fellow, she became assistant professor at Cornell Law School before becoming assistant professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK). Eva's teaching and research interests remain in Chinese Law, Legal and Political Philosophy, Human Rights, and Comparative Law.

Dr Joseph Chun:
'A Critical Analysis of the Contribution to Sustainable Development of the Law and Practice on Public Participation in the Authorisation of Radioactive Waste Disposal'. Joseph is currently working in the law firm Shook Lin & Bok LLP and is based in Singapore. His practice includes advising on subdivision of land, sales and purchases, sub-sales and financing/refinancing of various types of properties. He previously provided in-house legal advice and support to a major Singapore corporate in the areas of corporate secretarial work; drafting and vetting of commercial and corporate contracts, advising on joint ventures, tenders, aircraft financing and software development and licensing. Joseph has taught and researched on various aspects of real estate law and environmental law.

Dr Subathira Amarasingham:
'Principles, Policies and Practices in the Determination of Fair Terms in Exclusive Multi-option Recording and Music Publishing Agreements : An Anglo-American Study' .

Dr Riz Mokal: (now teaching at UCL Laws)
'Consistency of Principle in Corporate Liquidation'

Dr Jill Wakefield :
'The Conditions for Establishing the Non-contractual Liability of the Community under Article 288(2) EC'

Dr Claudia Wendrich:
'The World Bank Guidelines as a Foundation for a Global Investment Treaty - a Problem-Oriented Approach'. Claudia is an adjunct professor of law at Webster University Vienna where she teaches international law and labour law.

Dr Stephen Lucas:
'Foundations in the Law on Industrial Organisations in Russia and the Former Regimes of the USSR: 1985-90'. Stephen is a Partner in the London Office of Linklaters LLP where his practice is in banking and equity law.

Dr David Brooke:
'Confessions, Illegally / Improperly Obtained Evidence and Entrapment under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984: Changing Judicial and Public Attitudes to the Police Investigation'. David is a lecturer in the Business School of Leeds Metropolitan University where his interests are in Jurisprudence and the philosophy of law. Political theory. The law of Evidence. The Individual and the State. The Law of the Constitution.

Dr Jiang Du :
'The Reform-through-labour System in the People's Republic of China'

Dr Peter Jepson:
'Tackling Militant Racism'. Peter is Head of the Law Department of Strodes College, Egham, Surrey.

Dr Elaine Moran:
'Justifying Direct Discrimination: An Analysis of the Scope for a General Justification Defence in Case of Direct Sex Discrimination'

Dr Jonathan Rogers: (now teaching at UCL Laws)
'Theories of Exculapatory Defences in Criminal Law: Proposals for a New Theory of "Perfect" and "Imperfect" Defences'

Dr Sans-Zhu Zhu:
'Securities Regulation in China during an Era of Change'

Dr Antonio Bavasso: (now teaching at UCL Laws)
'Communications in EU Law: nti-Trust, Market Power and Public Interest'. Antonio is a parter in the law firm Allen & Overy LLP, a Visiting Professor at UCL Laws and also co-Director of the Jevons Institute for Competition Law and Economics.

Dr Ingrid Boccardi: (now teaching at UCL Laws)
'Towards an EU Asylum Policy: "Protection" for whom?'.