MA LLM PhD (Cantab.)
College Lecturer in Law (Robinson College); Affiliated Lecturer
Brian's research interests lie mainly in the fields of family law, property law and succession law (broadly conceived), covering jurisdictions including England & Wales, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and Canada.
Brian's first monograph, Informal Carers and Private Law, was published by Hart in December 2012. It concerned the use of private law remedies to support informal carers. The book was awarded one of the University of Cambridge's Yorke Prizes in 2014. A preview of the book is available via Google Books, and its opening chapter can be freely downloaded.
In her review published at  Edinburgh Law Review 436, Professor Nicole Busby described it as "an insightful and valuable book" that is "essential reading for those concerned with law's application to informal care-giving". In the Journal of Social Welfare & Family Law, Professor Jonathan Herring described it as an "enormously impressive" and "wonderful" book that is "carefully argued with a considerable sensitivity to the legal complexities raised" and provides "an invaluable contribution to the literature". In Social & Legal Studies, Professor Ann Stewart wrote that the book "shines new light on the provision of care in contemporary society", and contains a "careful and detailed analysis of the ways in which such caring is addressed within the conceptual framework of private law" that "provides the reader with an excellent account of the present state of the law but also a new perspective on...wider questions". She found the book "fascinating and a very valuable contribution to the growing literature on carers". For his part, Professor Steve Hedley said in the 2014 Law Quarterly Review that "the author is to be commended for drawing such heterogeneous material together into a coherent whole" and that the book is "an entirely competent and thought-provoking treatment of its subject matter".
In a rather broader review published in the Law and Politics Book Review, Professor Peter Cane described Informal Carers and Private Law as an "important, "innovative", "fine" and "path-breaking" book, "characterised by great analytical care, and a balanced and even-handed approach to normative issues". In Professor Cane's view, it may provide both "a window onto a very different world and an unfamiliar way of thinking about the relationship between public law and private law, the state and the individual" and "interesting and useful material for thinking about the variety of understandings of law and the role of courts in different systems".
In Lent Term 2015, Brian was an Early Career Fellow at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH) in Cambridge. During that time, he began to expand his work on care through a project entitled "Adult Social Care and Property Rights". More details about the project can be found on the CRASSH website and the University website.
Brian also publishes on the application of property law in the domestic sphere, the regulation of adult relationships, gender recognition and the law of adoption. His work on adoption was cited by the Supreme Court in In the matter of B (a child)  UKSC 33. Brian is currently involved in the Children's Rights Judgments project.
While many of the links below require subscriptions, the text of several of Brian's papers is freely available via his SSRN page or DSpace@Cambridge. He has been interviewed by radio and print journalists on adoption, same-sex marriage and relief on divorce.
Brian read for his BA in Law (scholar) and LLM (Wright Rogers scholar, Faculty of Law) at Robinson College. He then took up a W.M. Tapp doctoral studentship at Gonville and Caius College, and his PhD was supervised by Professor Kevin Gray and Dr Jens Scherpe.
After three years as Bob Alexander Fellow at King's College, Brian returned to Robinson in October 2012. He was formerly a member of the Board of Scrutiny.