Welcome to the SLSA

Where law meets the social sciences and humanities.



The Socio-Legal Studies Association

Welcome to the SLSA website where you will find comprehensive information about the SLSA's aims aims and objectives. You can also find out how to join and about the many benefits of membership. There are details on all our activities including our prestigious socio-legal prizes, our research grants scheme, our seminar competition and our popular annual and postgraduate conferences.

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SLSA Annual Prize 2018

The 2018 Prize for Contributions to the Socio-Legal Community has been awarded jointly this year to Fiona Cownie and Tony Bradney.

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SLSA Annual Conference 2019 Leeds

The call for papers is now open. Closing date: 14 January 2019.

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SLSA chair and Exec

The SLSA chair is Professor Rosie Harding (pictured) of the University of Birmingham. She took up the post in April 2017. Members are invited to contact the chair or a member of the Executive Committee with their comments, suggestions and feedback. See the Exec page for details.

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Socio-Legal Studies in Germany and the UK: Theory and methods

LSI, Faculty of Law, Humboldt University Berlin

23–24 September 2019

Call for papers

The SLSA and Humboldt University Berlin’s Law Department are hosting an international workshop to explore the different traditions of socio-legal studies in the UK and Germany. The workshop will be held from 23–24 September 2019 at the Humboldt University’s Law and Society Institute (LSI). The keynote lecture will be delivered by Professor Dr Susanne Baer (German Constitutional Court).

We invite papers that seek to understand the influence of institutional contexts and scholarly traditions upon the development of those approaches that come under the banner of socio-legal studies.
The workshop has three core aims:

  • to consider how different academic traditions and institutional contexts have influenced the development of socio-legal research in Germany and the UK;
  • to scrutinise theoretical and methodological approaches with a view to exploring similarities and differences in both contexts; and
  • to start an initial dialogue among participants, and to publish the research resulting from these interactions with a view to forging closer ties across the German and UK socio-legal communities, and to facilitating future connections and collaborations.

To achieve these aims, the workshop will reflect upon the similarities and differences between German Rechtssoziologie and socio-legal studies in the UK, with particular focus on the historical development of such ideas and approaches, as well as on identifying points of connection. It will look to generate initial conversations between scholars in these communities and to foster the continuation of such conversations subsequent to this event. Using the themes space, time, text and image to organise the contributions, participants will discuss the relevant methodologies, theories and concepts used in the shaping of contemporary socio-legal studies in Germany and the UK.

Building upon the success of the previous SLSA-sponsored one-day workshop on ‘Socio-legal studies/sociologie du droit: methods, traditions, theories in France and the UK’ (Paris 2018), this workshop will enable discussions of the key contemporary trends and approaches in both German and UK socio-legal contexts. Abstract submissions (250 words max) should be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 4 March 2019. The working language of the workshop will be English. Please note that there will be a presumption of commitment for publication of the presented work for all participating scholars.

Full details of the call for papers are also available for download

For further information, please contact one of the organisers:

  • Dr Jen Hendry (University of Leeds)
  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (University of Westminster) 
  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Humboldt University Berlin) 

Postgraduate resources list

The SLSA PGR reps Rachael Blakey and Tahir Abass have compiled a resources list for PGRs. It includes sources to help postgraduates with writing and preparing for the viva, as well as communities for support

The PGR reps' aim is to continue updating this spreadsheet and provide sources on a variety of areas. If you know of any other sources that may be of use to PGRs, please let them know! Contact them at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Sources can include databases, books on socio-legal research and apps that help you work. We hope that the list will be useful to everyone throughout their postgraduate studies and will grow in size over time.

SLSA 2019: call for papers and posters

The SLSA 2019 website is now live. It will be regularly updated over the coming months.

Call for papers

Submission and deadline

If you wish to present a paper at the conference, please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words on one of the streams or current topics. Abstracts must be submitted via the EasyChair online system here. Submissions opened on 19 October 2018 and close at 6pm on 14 January 2019.

General Information

In general, each panel session is 90 minutes long, contains three papers of 20 minutes each, leaving 30 minutes for discussion. Streams/current topics which are heavily subscribed may have four papers of 15 minutes in each session. stream and current topic convenors will provide more specific information on the structure of their sessions, which may differ from this model, nearer to the time.

In line with the SLSA's ethos, papers may be interdisciplinary in nature, and submissions from outside of law are welcome. Similarly, papers concerning socio-legal issues beyond the UK are also welcome.

If your proposal concerns something other than a paper (for example, a pre-formed session, a joint panel proposal, a 'meet the author' session, a film screening etc.), you should contact the relevant stream or theme convenor to discuss this.

Call for posters

Submission and Deadline

An abstract of your poster (up to 300 words) should be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the email subject ‘Poster Abstract’ by 6pm on 28 February 2019.

The poster display will take place in Parkinson Court. Researchers should bring their posters to registration between 10:00 and 13:30 on Wednesday 3 April 2019. They will then be assigned a board on which to display their poster. As in previous years, there is a specific Poster Competition for postgraduate researchers who are presenting, the prize of which will be presented at the conference dinner on the evening of Thursday 4 April 2019.

Poster Guidance

Posters should be designed to be A1 size (594 x 841mm) and can be landscape or portrait. Participants will be provided with a posterboard. Posters should have a title and the name of the researcher(s), affiliation(s) and email address(es) should be clearly presented.

Researchers should ensure that:

  • important information should be readable from about one metre away;
  • the title is short and draws interest;
  • the text is clear and to the point;
  • the use of bullets, numbering and headlines present the information clearly;
  • graphics, colour and fonts are used effectively; and
  • the layout is consistent and clean.

Rich Law, Poor Law

This one-day SLSA-sponsored event is being organised by Katie Bales and Dave Cowan, University of Bristol, and Ann Mumford, Dickson Poon School of Law, King's College London.

Date: 25 January 2019

Venue: Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London

Plenary speakers: Kathleen Lahey (Queens, Canada), Linda Mulcahy (Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, Oxford (from January 2019)), John Flint (Sheffield)

Registration details will be published when available.

Impact and Law Reform Conference

This one-day conference has been organised by the SLSA and the Society for Legal Scholars in collaboration with the Law Commission for England and Wales and the Scottish Law Commission.

Date: 11 June 2019

Venue: Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Charles Clore House, 17 Russell Square, London, WC1B 5DR

Keynote speaker: Brenda Hale (President of the Supreme Court, The Right Hon the Baroness Hale of Richmond DBE)

‘Impact’ has become an increasingly important aspect of academic work over the last decade. This conference – co-organised by the SLSA, the Society of Legal Scholars, the Law Commission for England and Wales and the Scottish Law Commission – aims to reflect on how academic legal research has influenced and informed law reform in the past, engage in debate and dialogue on contemporary law reform projects, and equip legal researchers with the tools they require to generate legal and policy impacts in the future.

The conference seeks to address the following questions:

  • How can legal researchers work with the Law Commissions to advance law reform agendas?
  • What approaches to impact and law reform have worked well in the past?
  • How can legal researchers develop the skills required to facilitate legal and policy impact?
  • What are the foreseeable future challenges and opportunities for legal and policy impact?

Registration will open in due course, and more information on the exciting range of speakers will follow soon. Until then, please SAVE THE DATE!

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