News: research and funding

On this page, we report on the latest news about research and funding in the world of socio-legal studies. This can include information from the major UK funders, launches of research projects or research centres, calls for collaboration, in fact, any aspect of academic research that is of interest to socio-legal scholars.

Items will usually be retained for a period of about three months, or until any significant dates have passed.

If you would like a news item included on this page. Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Latest . . .

British Academy postdoctoral fellowships: new call for proposals

British Academy/Leverhulme small research grants: new call for proposals

Funding bodies and other related organisations



British Academy

British Library


Equality and Human Rights Commission

Higher Education Academy


International Research Collaboratives

Joseph Rowntree Foundation

Law and Society Association

Legal Education Research Network

Ministry of Justice

National Archives

National Centre for Research Methods

Nuffield Foundation

Research Councils UK


Research Cluster in Law, Justice and Society

Restorative Justice Council

Science and Technology Select Committee

UK Administrative Justice Institute

UK Research and Innovation

University of Leeds

Academy of Social Sciences

The Academy of Social Sciences (AcSS) is the voice of social sciences in the UK.

The Academy is composed of over 800 individual academicians and 44 learned societies. Academicians are distinguished scholars and practitioners from academia and the public and private sectors. Most of the learned societies (including the SLSA) in the social sciences in the United Kingdom are represented within the Academy.

Please visit the AcSS website for full details.

AcSS Council

Professor Robert Dingwall has been elected to the AcSS Council for a three-year term until 2016. Please see website for details of council meetings.



AHRC-ESRC-FCO Knowledge Exchange Fellowship Scheme: call

Applications are now open for this jointly run scheme. Please see website for details. Closing date: 31 October 2017.

AHRC Research in Film Awards 2017

The AHRC’s Research in Film Awards are designed to showcase, reward and recognise the best of the growing number of high-quality short films (defined as no longer than 30 minutes) that are linked to arts and humanities research. For the third year running, there is also the 'Inspiration Award' which is open to members of the public, provided their film has been inspired by research in the arts and humanities. Please see website for details. Closing date: 6 July 2017.

Research funding guide

The AHRC research funding guide version 1.2.

Researchers in residence

Researchers in Residence (RinR), funded by RCUK with support from the Wellcome Trust, brings together researchers, young people and teachers via exciting and innovative placements in secondary schools and colleges across the UK. The scheme is  open to all PhD and post-doctoral researchers funded directly or indirectly by one of the seven UK Research Councils or the Wellcome Trust.


British Academy

The British Academy's funding page is constantly updated.

British Academy postdoctoral fellowships: new call for proposals

The British Academy is currently inviting applications from early career researchers to apply for the its postdoctoral fellowship scheme. Please see announcement for details. Deadline for submission for the Outline Stage: 18 October 2017.

British Academy/Leverhulme small research grants: new call for proposals

The British Academy is currently inviting applications from scholars for the BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants scheme, which is administered by the Academy. Please see website for details. Closing date for applications: 1 November 2017.

British Academy: Response to triggering of Article 50

On 29 March, the Academy responded to the UK government triggering Article 50 as part of the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill. Foreign Secretary at the British Academy Professor Ash Amin, said: 'The Government must do everything within its power to safeguard the UK's world-leading research, innovation and higher education systems.' See website for full statement.

British Academy Conversation: What are the biggest challenges facing humanities and social science research and study?

British Academy Vice-President for the Humanities, Professor Alan Bowman, and Vice-President for Social Sciences, Professor Dominic Abram, discuss the challenges facing research and study in the humanities and social sciences in 2017. Follow link to listen to the conversation.

British Library

Mapping Oral Histories of Law: call for participation

National Life Stories at the British Library has commissioned a Scoping Study to map the existing collection of oral histories of legal professions in post-war Britain. The study, being undertaken by Chris Monaghan, a senior lecturer in law at the University of Greenwich, will inform the focus of a relaunched National Life Stories Legal Lives project. The research phase of the Scoping Study finishes in early March 2015. We would be incredibly grateful for any help in identifying  existing oral histories. Please send any suggestions or queries to Chris Monaghan. See attachment for further details.

New social welfare portal

Please visit the new social welfare portal, test the service, and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. your feedback. You can also blog post about the portal.

British newspaper archive

A British Library partnership with Brightsolid has launched a new online newspaper archive with a list of around 170 titles mainly dating from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries drawn from British Library newspaper collections. Searching with preview snippets will be free. Content will be free to access in BL reading rooms, while pay-per-view and annual subscription models will be available for remote access on an individual basis.

The emphasis of title selection is predominantly sub-national regional press, and appears to have a family history audience in mind. It appears that the following titles are likely to be included: Cobbett's Weekly Political Register (1802—1835), a few Chartist titles (1837—1852) including Northern Star and Northern Liberator, Illustrated Police News (1867—1900), Perry’s Bankrupt Gazette (1828–1867), Freeman's Journal (1820 - 1900). Neither the County Courts Chronicle nor Weekly Police News appear on the list butThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. will pass on suggestions from British Library readers in the SLSA to the project team and Brightsolid (please include subject line' britishnewspaperarchive SLSA').

New moving image service at the British Library

1 October 2012 sees the piloting of the British Library's moving image services. From 1 October two new, instant access services are available for anyone researching in one of the Reading Rooms (at St Pancras, Colindale or Boston Spa) plus special access to a huge television and radio database. In combination with the existing sound collections, the British Library can now provide instant access to nearly a million sound and moving image items onsite, supported by data for over 20 million sound and moving image recordings. Please visit website for full details.


ESRC Centres Competition 2018: Pre-call announcement

In November 2017 the ESRC will be announcing an open competition for research centres. There will be no priority areas for this call. The ESRC would welcome applications of excellent quality in any area of social science within its remit. For further details and to register your interest, please see the full pre-call announcement.

ESRC Micro Safe Settings Network: Applications invited for Micro Safe Settings (SafePods)

The ESRC’s Micro Safe Settings Network (MSSN) is a new service that will provide the facilities and support for researchers to remotely access sensitive data held by data centres across the UK. Please see website for details and application process. Closing date for initial expressions of interest: 27 October 2017.

ESRC Global Challenges Research Fund: pre-call announcement

The ESRC has pre-announced the commissioning of four new calls under the Global Challenges Research Fund. The calls will focus on the areas of mental health, education and skills, decent work and transitions towards sustainable and inclusive societies. See website for details. The formal launch will be in October/November 2017.

ESRC Transformative Research call 2017–18: now open

The ESRC has announce the fourth round of the Transformative Research Call. The aim of this call is to provide a stimulus for genuinely transformative research ideas at the frontiers of the social sciences, enabling research which challenges current thinking to be supported and developed. Please see website for details. Closing date: 7 November 2017.

ESRC New Investigator Grants: call

Applications are invited for this new scheme. Awards will be from £100,000 to £300,000. Please see website for details. This is an open call with no closing date.

Higher Education Academy

The Higher Education Academy (HEA) provides services to the higher education sector for individual learning and teaching professionals, senior managers in institutions and for subject and discipline groups. Please visit website for further information.


Equality and Human Rights Commission

The Equality and Human Rights Commission invites tenders for research into the equality and human rights impacts of recent changes to civil law justice.  It involves a literature review and delivery of two roundtables. Please see website for details. Closing date: 4 December 2014


Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is requesting proposals for assessment of the ICANN Office of Ombudsman. Please see website for details. Closing date: 31 January 2017.

International Research Collaboratives

‘Law, Reason and Emotion’ – call for expressions of interest

The Law and Society Association (LSA) has awarded the status of International Research Collaborative (IRC) to the network entitled Law, Reason and Emotion. Please see attachment for full details of this IRC and of the call.


Joseph Rowntree Foundation

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation is an endowed charity that funds a large, UK-wide research and development programme. It seeks to understand the root causes of social problems, to identify ways of overcoming then and to show how social needs can be met in practice.

Please visit the website for more information.

Law and Society Association 

The Law and Society Association was set up in the USA in 1964 to support its members in developing theoretical and empirical understandings of law. See the website for full details.

Request for proposals for International Research Collaboratives: note closing date 17 July 2015

Proposals are invited for International Research Collaboratives. See website for details.

Legal Education Research Network

For information on the Legal Education Research Network (LERN) please see website.

LERN research grants

The LERN runs a small research grants scheme to fund new projects in legal education. The grants are jointly sponsored by the Association of Law Teachers and the Society of Legal Scholars.

Full guidance notes and and application forms can be downloaded from the website. Closing date: 30 September 2014.

Ministry of Justice


Published for the first time every sentence handed down at each court in the country between July 2010 and June 2011, along with the age and ethnicity of each offender. Please see press release for full details.

Court statistics

View the latest court statistics: published quarterly.


National Archives

The National Archives has launched a consultation on the utility of archive-finding tools. Please visit the survey. Closing date: 12 December 2012.

 National Centre for Research Methods

The National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM) is a network of research groups, each conducting research and training in social science research methods. It is co-ordinated from a hub in the University of Southampton and nodes across UK universities. NCRM provides a focal point for research, training and capacity-building activities. These activities are aimed at promoting a step change in the quality and range of methodological skills and techniques used by the UK social science community, and providing support for, and dissemination of, methodological innovation and excellence within the UK.

The NCRM provides regular email bulletins. To register, please visit the subscriptions page. The centre also runs regular training events.

NCRM latest research methods training and events programme

The NCRM has published its training and events programme for March–July 2015. Please see attachment for details.

NCRM training bursaries open for applications

Applications are invtied for NCRM training bursaries. The bursaries are worth up to £1000 and are aimed at enabling staff in the UK social science community to update their research skills. There is no closing date but the scheme will close for the year when the budget has be exhausted. Please see website for details.

Nuffield Foundation

The Nuffield Foundation is a charitable trust established in 1943 by William Morris, Lord Nuffield, the founder of Morris Motors. Lord Nuffield wanted to contribute to improvements in society, including the expansion of education and the alleviation of disadvantage. He called this the ‘advancement of social well-being’, and emphasised the importance of education, training and research in achieving that goal. Today, the foundation works to improve social well-being by funding research and innovation in education and social policy. the foundation is also increasing the proliferation and quality of research and professional skills – both in science and social sciences – through its capacity-building programmes.

Towards a Family Justice Observatory to Improve the Generation and Application of Research: call for Expressions of Interest

The Nuffield Foundation invites expressions of interest for a scoping study on the family justice system. Please see attachment for details. Closing date: 9 November 2015.


Research Cluster in Law, Justice and Society, Oxford

A new Research Cluster in Law, Justice and Society has been launched at Wolfson College, in collaboration with the Foundation for Law, Justice and Society (FLJS). The research cluster will join several other research clusters created under the guidance of college President, Professor Hermione Lee, which draw on the outstanding scholarly strengths and interests within the college to foster innovative approaches to interdisciplinary research.

Please see flyer for further details or visit the cluster website.

Research Councils UK

Each year the Research Councils invest around £3 billion in research covering the full spectrum of academic disciplines from the medical and biological sciences to astronomy, physics, chemistry and engineering, social sciences, economics, environmental sciences and the arts and humanities.

RCUK statement on international collaboration post-EU referendum

The outcome of the EU referendum raises questions for UK researchers and international partners about the Research Councils’ international activities and collaborations. RCUK's statment can be found on the website.

Research Excellence Framework

Latest publications from the REF: all submissions made by UK universities plus Equality and Diversity Advisory Panel report and HEI codes of practice

The 1911 submissions made by 154 UK universities to the 2014 REF have now been published on the REF website. The submissions included 52,061 academic staff, 191,150 research outputs and 6975 case studies on impact of resesarch. Please see website for details.

The panel overview reports and the final report by the Equality and Diversity Advisory Panel are also available here and the final lists of panel membership and special advisers have also been published. The codes of practice on staff selection from all submitting Higher Education Institutions are also available.

Full REF results now available

The REF2014 results were published at the end of 2014. For full details of the overall and sub-profiles for each submission see the website. In addition to the results, the updated website also contains summary data about each unit of assessment and an analysis of the 2014 REF results as a whole.

HEFCE to publish database of REF impact case studies

As part of the 2014 Research Excellence Framework exercise, UK higher education institutions submitted 6975 impact case studies demonstrating the impact of their research on wider society. HEFCE and its partners have commissioned Digital Science to produce a freely available database of these impact case studies. These case studies will provide a unique and invaluable source of information on the impact of UK research. Please see website for further details.

REF: latest FAQs

The latest FAQs for October 2012 are available on the website.

Latest news: October 2012

There is now a downloadable brief guide for research users. Nominations are invited for research users to become user assessors. Data management guidance has also been published.

REF submission system pilot

The REF submission system pilot is now open. It will close on 30 November 2012. The final system will be launched in January 2013.

Latest information

Panel criteria and working methods now available

Frequently asked questions

Please follow the link for the REF 2012 Frequently Asked Questions.

Citation data

The process for gathering citation date for the REF 2014 has been published on the REF website.

Maternity leave

The REF team has announced its decision on taking into account maternity leave under the new regime. Researchers can reduce the number of outputs by one for each period of maternity leave taken. Announcements are still awaited on adoption and paternity leave. See REF website for more details.

Weighting of research impact confirmed for REF 2014

Details of how the new Research Excellence Framework will assess research that has led to wider social and economic benefits have been announced. Please visit the HEFCE website.

Main and sub-panel chairs

A full list of main and sub-panel chairs is available on the HEFCE website.

Research impact

During 2010 the REF team ran a pilot exercise which aimed to test the feasibility of assessing research impact, and to develop the method of assessment for use in the REF. The findings from the impact pilot exercise have now been published. Reports, recommendations, and example case studies are now available from the HEFCE website. A joint event was organised by the SLSA, SLS and CHULS at the British Academy on 16 September 2011. For a copy of the powerpoint slides presented by the chair of the Law Sub-Panel, Professor Gillian Douglas, click here.


Restorative Justice Council

Access to and experiences of restorative justice for BAME young people

The Restorative Justice Council is embarking on a research project to gain a better understanding of the access to and experiences of restorative justice for BAME (Black, Asian and minority ethnic) young people who have offended. In addition to a lack of research in relation to BAME young people and criminal justice, there is also a perception among some practitioners that there are problems in effectively engaging and delivering restorative interventions with this group. The aim of the research is to develop practical solutions for the restorative field and recommendations for change to future policy development.

For more information please contact the RJC’s senior research officer This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

UK Administrative Justice Institute

UKAJI Current Research Network: next update May 2017

The UK Administrative Justice Institute (UKAJI), based at the University of Essex, has been set up to develop a UK-wide, cross-disciplinary community of researchers undertaking empirical research, funders, practitioners and policy-makers. More about UKAJI’s work, which is funded by the Nuffield Foundation until September 2017, is on our website and blog.

Please see attachment to find out how take part in the latest update of the UKAJI Current Research Register of work in progress. Closing date: 14 April 2017.

UK Research and Innovation

Operating across the whole of the UK with a combined budget of more than £6 billion, UK Research and Innovation will bring together the seven Research Councils, Innovate UK and a new organisation, Research England. Research England will work closely with its partner organisations in the devolved administrations.

UK Research and Innovation interim website

An interim website has been launched by UK Research and Innovation. The site will be a source of news and information about the development of UK Research and Innovation ahead of its formal creation in April 2018.

University of Leeds

N8 Policing Research Partnerships, University of Leeds

A new programme of research and knowledge-sharing – N8 Policing Research Partnerships (N8 PRP) – is to play a key role in informing future policing policy, following funding for a major new collaboration in the north of England. Led by the University of Leeds and funded with £3m from the Higher Education Funding Council, the five-year programme of activities brings together researchers from a variety of disciplines to generate new insights with practical relevance. The programme's director is Professor Adam Crawford, University of Leeds. Please visit website for further details.