Newcastle Law School

Staff Profile

Professor Richard Mullender

Professor of Law and Legal Theory



I studied Law in Exeter (LL.B.) and Oxford (B.C.L.).  I lectured in Exeter Law School before moving to Newcastle in 1996.  In 2006, I became a reader and in 2012 a professor.  I am currently the subject co-ordinator for both Tort Law and Legal Theory and have, at various times, taught (among other things) Criminal law, Medical Law, and research method.  Both Tort and Legal Theory are central areas of research-related concern for me.  I have, in recent years, written on the relationship between law and the ideal of community.  I am currently exploring this relationship by reference to the legal theories of H.L.A. Hart and Ronald Dworkin and the works of two political philosophers, Isaiah Berlin and Michael Oakeshott.  In 2011, I became the School’s Director of Research.  This is a wide-ranging role, concerned with the work of individual researchers and research groups in the School, and also with alliances in the University (e.g., the Newcastle Institute for Social Renewal) and with partners elsewhere in the world (e.g., Jilin University in China).  Likewise, it is concerned with the delivery of research-led teaching in the School. 

Prior to studying Law, I trained and practised as a Registered Mental Nurse and, at a still earlier point in my life, I worked in a bank. 


Research Director

Unit of Assessment Co-ordinator (for the Research Excellence Framework 2014)

Chair of the School Research Committee

Member of the Faculty Research Strategy Group

Member of the Faculty Research Development Group




My research focuses on the processes of development within and the moral impulses that inform law.  In pursuing these interests, my central area of concern has been tort law (and in particular the law of negligence).  However, I have applied the analyses that have emerged from this work to other areas of law (including human rights law and public law more generally).  I am currently seeking to develop an interdisciplinary approach to the analysis of law that draws on the legal philosophy of Herbert Hart and the contributions to political philosophy of Isaiah Berlin and Michael Oakeshott.  The aim is to demonstrate that Hart offers an account of law as a field of interpretative possibility into which it is possible to integrate considerations that he does not address (including value pluralism and the models of human association that legal systems work to sustain). 

Selected Publications

“Judging and Jurisprudence in the USA” (2012) 75 Modern Law Review 919-940.

“Human Rights, Responsibilities and the Pursuit of a Realistic Utopia” (2010) 61 Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly 33-52. 

“Negligence, Public Bodies, and Ruthlessness” (2009) 72 Modern Law Review 961-983.  (Cited by the Supreme Court of India in MCD v Asscn, Victims Of Uphaar Tragedy (13th October, 2011), [9] and [19], per Raveendran J.) 

“English Negligence Law as a Human Practice” (2009) 21 Law & Literature 321-353.

 “Law, Morality and the Egalitarian Philosophy of Government” (2009) 29 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 389-411.  

“Nazi Law and the Concept of Community” (2008) University of Toronto Law Journal 377-387. 

“Hate Speech and Pornography in Canada: a Qualified Deontological Response to a Consequentialist Argument” (2007) 20 Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence 241-255. 

“Hegel, Human Rights, and Particularism” (2003) 30 Journal of Law and Society 554-574.   

“Tort Law, Human Rights, and Common Law Culture” (2003) 23 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 301-318. 

“Theorising The Third Way: Qualified Consequentialism, The Proportionality Principle and the New Social Democracy” (2000) 27 Journal of Law and Society 493-516.  

Recent Papers   

“Privacy, Public Bodies, and Welfare Consequentialism”, Northumbria Law School-Newcastle Law School Research Forum, Northumbria Law School (July 2013).

 “Tort, Human Rights, and Ruthlessness”, Bangor Law School, University of Bangor (February 2013).  

Research Supervision  

Postgraduate degree projects successfully completed include: 

N. Binlebdah, ‘A Comparative Study of Judicial Review in Saudi Arabia and the UK’ (Ph.D) (2009). 

A. Alsaif, ‘Discrimination and the Rights of Disabled People’ (Ph.D) (2008).  

H. Dziyauddin, ‘Freedom of Expression and Privacy and Malaysia and the UK’ (Ph.D) (2006). 


I am a member of the editorial advisory board of the Journal of Professional Negligence

If you would like further information on reading for a research degree at Newcastle Law School please see



Undergraduate Teaching

Currently, I teach:

Tort Law
Legal Theory
Research Method

I have also taught:

Criminal Law
Human Rights Law
Legal Skills