UCL to establish new centre for ethics and law

14 October 2009

UCL has announced a collaboration with industry leaders to establish a new Centre for Ethics and Law.

The UCL Laws faculty

UCL, Norton Rose LLP, Ernst & Young and the Institute of Business Ethics have secured support from six founding corporate supporters: AstraZeneca, BAE, BP, Constellation Brand Inc, HSBC and Nestle.

The new Centre for Ethics and Law will bring together general counsel and group compliance chiefs from the six founding corporate supporters. Continued dialogue with these industry leaders and the broader business community will be a key feature of the Centre, which will be officially launched by an inaugural lecture on 21 October entitled ‘Risk and Regulation’. The lecture will be given by Professor Jonathan Wolff (UCL Philosophy) and chaired by Lord Neuberger, the Master of the Rolls.

The initiative reflects the growing need for enhanced collaboration between academics, practising lawyers and industry, given the fast changing and increasingly interdisciplinary nature of the global issues lying at the intersection between law and ethics.

Drawing expertise from a wide range of disciplines (law, economics, philosophy, as well as engineering, geophysics and medicine), the Centre will facilitate interdisciplinary research and practice-oriented collaboration in three key areas: ethics of risk, professional ethics and distributive justice.

The Centre will:

  • act as a focal point for intellectual leadership and the exchange of ideas between academics, practitioners, and industry;
  • seek to support the rebuilding of trust between society and business by developing intellectual frameworks and fora to underpin the assessment and discussion of ethical conduct.

The Centre’s programme will provide a series of high level seminars and case study-based workshops, specifically aimed at senior management, which will culminate in a CEO summit and an executive development course.

UCL Dean of the Law Faculty Dame Hazel Genn said: “UCL is very keen to engage with people outside academia and to contribute to the wider community. This is a key part of the Law Faculty’s mission and the University’s contribution to Global Challenges.”

Media contact: Dominique Fourniol

Image: Bentham House, the home of UCL Laws

UCL context

The Faculty of Laws at UCL has a world-class reputation for research. In the UK government 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), Laws is placed joint first in the UK for the proportion of its research activity in the top two star categories (75% 4*/3*).

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