Gillian Douglas

Gillian Douglas


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Personal profile

Research interests

Family Law, Law relating to Children, Legal Consequences of Relationship Breakdown, Legal Pluralism

Biographical details

Following my undergraduate education in Law at Manchester University, I gained an LLM at the London School of Economics. In 2011 I was awarded the degree of LLD (Doctor of Laws) by Cardiff University. I have taught at the University of Bristol and been a Visiting Teaching Fellow at the National University of Singapore.

Prior to taking up leadership of The Dickson Poon School of Law at King’s, I was Professor of Law in the School of Law and Politics at Cardiff University and served as Head of the School between 2005 – 2010.

My main research interest is family law, on which I have written extensively. I am a past Secretary-General of the International Society of Family Law and am currently a co-editor of the Child and Family Law Quarterly and joint case reports editor of the journal, Family Law. I have conducted several empirical research studies into aspects of the family justice system, funded by, amongst others, the AHRC, ESRC, the Nuffield Foundation and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and an Athena SWAN award assessment panellist. Between 2010-2014, I was Chair of the Law Sub-Panel for REF 2014 -  the UK's research assessment exercise - and I have served as a member of the AHRC's Peer Review College. I am a former member of the Leverhulme Trust Research Awards Advisory Committee. In 2012, I was elected a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales and I served as a Member of the Law Commission's Welsh Advisory Committee from 2013 to 2016. I was made a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in 2016 and elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2017. I was elected an Honorary Bencher of Gray's Inn in 2018.

In 2015, I took up a two-year Major Research Fellowship funded by the Leverhulme Trust to pursue a study of obligation and commitment in Family Law, and was awarded the Society of Legal Scholars (SLS) Annual Conference Best Paper Prize for my presentation on this topic at the SLS conference in September 2015. My book, Obligation and Commitment in Family Law was published by Hart publishing in 2018. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Law, Doctor of Laws, The Relationship between Family Law and Social Change, Cardiff University

Award Date: 14 Jul 2011

Law, Master of Laws, University of London

Award Date: 22 Oct 1978

Law, Bachelor of Laws, University of Manchester

Award Date: 7 Jul 1977


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