UCL Faculty of Laws

Prof Ian Dennis

Prof Ian Dennis

Emeritus Professor

Faculty of Laws


Joined UCL
1st Sep 2013

Research summary

Ian Dennis has research interests in criminal law and related subjects, including criminal process, human rights and the law of evidence. His extensive writings in this area include a Report to the Law Commission on Codification of the Criminal Law (with JC Smith and EJ Griew), some fifty articles and book chapters on a variety of topics, and a a leading textbook, The Law of Evidence (now in its seventh edition). Recent work includes analyses of a defendant's right to confront witnesses in criminal proceedings, a study of the impact of human rights jurisprudence on the development of the law of criminal evidence, a re-examination of the defence of necessity in criminal law, an essay on the arguments used to justify and critique the use of civil preventive orders as an adjunct to the criminal law, a review of the law relating to new evidence in double jeopardy cases, and a critique of failings of prosecution disclosure. Future projects include an eighth edition of the Evidence text and a critique of some formal rules in the law of legal privilege. He is particularly interested in the relationship between doctrine and theory in criminal law and process, and in the comparative law of common law systems of criminal justice.

Teaching summary

Ian Dennis taught on all the degree programmes at UCL Laws. In the LLB programme he taught modules in Criminal Law and the Law of Evidence, in addition to supervising dissertations. In the LLM programme he taught a course on Criminal Process and Human Rights. He also supervised  PhD students. He retired from teaching in 2018. 


University of Cambridge
Doctorate, Doctor of Philosophy | 1998
University of Cambridge
Other higher degree, Master of Arts | 1979
University of Cambridge
First Degree, Bachelor of Arts | 1970


Ian Dennis is Emeritus Professor of English Law at UCL. He took his undergraduate Law Degree at the University of Cambridge, graduating in 1970 with First Class Honours in the Law Tripos. He then qualified as a barrister and was called to the Bar at Gray's Inn in 1971. After completing pupillage he accepted an offer of a lectureship at UCL in 1974. He was promoted to Reader in English Law in 1982 and to a Chair of English Law in 1987 which he held until 2013. He took his PhD in 1998 under the Special Regulations of the University of Cambridge. He was Head of the Department of Laws at UCL from 2002-07 and has held numerous other administrative offices. He was Editor of the Criminal Law Review from 1999-2011. In 2009 he founded the Centre of Criminal Law at UCL to promote teaching, research and public engagement in criminal law and related subjects. He is an academic associate in chambers at 6 Kings Bench Walk in London. He was a Visiting Professor at the University of Sydney from 2008-13. In 2014 he was awarded the degree of LLD by the University of Cambridge.