Newcastle Law School

Newcastle Forum for Human Rights & Social Justice

Newcastle Forum for Human Rights and Social Justice


The Newcastle Forum for Human Rights and Social Justice (NHRSJ) aims to foster debate within and beyond Newcastle University about the concepts of human rights and its place within broader conceptions of social justice.

As members of HaSS Faculty Research Groups, we seek to cultivate a stimulating and innovative research environment by forging inter-disciplinary and inter-institutional links.

The NHRSJ examines human rights as a foundation of wider inter-disciplinary research into social justice.

We engage with contemporary discussions on the nature of human rights, the challenges faced by the human rights movement and the concept’s history and development. As such, our work has relevance across the humanities and social sciences. We aim to produce outputs that raise awareness of relevant issues, alter attitudes of public officials, shape debate, and issue in legal change.

The work of the NHRSJ advances understanding of human rights and social justice, both within and beyond the United Kingdom. In our work, we collaborate with practitioners, non-governmental organisations, international organisations and government agencies, contributing to training and knowledge exchange within this important field.

The NHRSJ is a member of the Association of Human Rights Institutes (AHRI).

Achieving our Aims

These aims will be achieved in various ways:

  • Through the organisation of events such as seminars and lectures with prominent speakers on specific issues, which reflect the teaching and research interests of each member of the Group, the Group hopes to facilitate dissemination of knowledge of the latest developments on human rights and related issues.
  • Through the production of high quality teaching and research, reflecting the interests of its members, the Group hopes to support critical thinking, academic initiative and freedom of thought.
  • Through the formulation of common teaching and research ideas, intended to be materialised with the support of external funding, the Group hopes to organise events which will assist in achieving its aims.


  • Dr Elena Katselli (NULS)
  • Dr Helen Limon (NCLA)
  • Professor Kathryn Hollingsworth (NULS)
  • Mr Colin Murray (NULS)
  • Dr Jane Ball (NULS)
  • Dr Nikki Godden-Rasul (NULS)
  • Jenny Johnstone (NULS)
  • Rhona Smith (NULS) 
  • Joshua Jowitt (NULS) 
  • Helene Tyrrell (NULS)
  • Elliot Winter (NULS) 
  • Emilia Mickiewicz (NULS) 
  • Prof Andrew Griffiths (NULS)
  • Dr Christine Beuermann (NULS)
  • Tom Bennett (NULS)
  • Gary Craig (NULS)
  • Bronwen Jones (NULS)
  • David McGrogan (Northumbria)
  • Adam Ramshaw (Northumbria)
  • Jo Smith Finley (SML)
  • Sarah Campbell (HCA)  
  • Andrew Beetham (NULS - PHD)
  • Raffaella D'Antonio (NULS)
  • Richard Poole (NULS - PHD)
  • Christel Querton (Newcastle University)
  • Hanna Burdorf (Newcastle University)

Seminars 17/18

Dates have been confirmed for semester 1 seminars:

  • Wednesday 31st January - 12-1pm: 'David and Goliath: the currency of participation for unaccompanied migrant children in the UK' - Professor Helen Stalford 

All seminars will take place in Seminar Room 5, Newcastle Law School.

We have a brilliant lecture series organised by Dr Sarah Campbell, Lecturer in Modern Irish and British History (School of History, Classics and Archaeology – Newcastle University) under the theme 'The Fight for Rights: From the Rights of Man to Freedom City’.

This is in collaboration with the Tyneside Irish Centre and Freedom City, and supported by the Forum for Human Rights & Social Justice.

Panel discussion - Refugee Crisis

On 23rd October a panel of volunteers who had first-hand experience of the refugee crisis shared their stories and answered questions from those who attended.

Speakers included:

Past Seminars

  • Wednesday 31st January 2018 - 12-1pm: 'David and Goliath: the currency of participation for unaccompanied migrant children in the UK' - Professor Helen Stalford (Liverpool University)
  • Wednesday 16th December 2017 - 1-2pm: 'Law and the Philosophy of Privacy' - Janice Richardson (Monash University)
  • Wednesday 9th December 2017 - 1-2pm: 'The Influence of Personal Values on Judicial Decision Making' - Dr Rachel Cahill-O'Callaghan (Cardiff University) 
  • Thursday 15th October 2017 - 2-3pm: 'Republican liberty and common law: The 18th century context of Entick v Carrington' - Professor TT Arvind (Newcastle Law School)
  • Wednesday 17th May 2017 - 1-2pm: ‘The ECtHR’s European Consensus Method of Interpretation: Constructed (Il)Legitimacy’ - Dr Vassilis Tzevelekos (Liverpool University)
  • Wednesday 10th May 2017 - 1-2pm: ‘British Humanitarian Responses to Post-Independence Civil Wars on Three Continents: Biafra, Cyprus and Vietnam’- Dr Rosemary Wall (Department of History, University of Hull)
  • Wednesday 26th April 2017 - 1-2pm: ‘The Heart of the Matter: A Queer Feminist Critique of the Criminalisation of Fraudulent Consent’ - Professor Sharon Cowan  (University of Edinburgh)
  • Monday 20th March 2017 - 6pm: 'Voices from Syria: A First-Hand Account of the Syrian Conflict' - Dr Haytham Alhamwi
  • Wednesday 1st March 2017 - 1-2pm: ‘Resilience and Governmentality of Unknowns’ - Professor Simin Davoudi (School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape, Newcastle University)
  • Wednesday 15th February 2017 - 1-2pm: 'Recourse to Expert Psychological Input, Evidence and Support at the International Criminal Court: Successes and Shortfalls' - Dr Ellie Smith (Consultant, Nuremberg Principles Academy)