Law

This section brings together Fellows who specialise in law.

What is law?

Professor Conor Gearty FBA

Professor, barrister and Fellow of the British Academy Conor Gearty explains the study of law – and why we need it.

Focus of this section

Law is the system of rules that govern society. The rules may range from those prohibiting certain forms of conduct (e.g. criminal law) through those which enable the achievement of social goals in particular ways (e.g. contracts) to those which give political authority to our institutions (e.g. constitutional law) or allow us to call government to account (e.g. judicial review). The rules may be studied in order to determine what they actually are, analyse their underlying justifications, criticise their operation, and propose their reform. The methods of study include the doctrinal, the philosophical and political, the sociological and the historical.

Section chair

Professor Dame Sarah Worthington FBA

Downing Professor of the Laws of England, University of Cambridge; Fellow, Trinity College, Cambridge

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