skip to content
Mr Lewis Graham's picture


Education CV

Bristol (LLB); Oxford (BCL); Cambridge (PhD).

Fields of research

My main focus point in my doctoral research is on the intersection of judges, courts and politics. My PhD thesis focuses on judicial behaviour on the individual styles of the judges sitting on the UK Supreme Court. I am interested in the work of courts and judges more generally, and have also published on a number of human rights issues, including life sentences and fair trial rights. I am currently working on a book with Professor Steven Greer (Bristol) and Dr Lindsey Bell (Bristol) exploring human rights challenges in the post-9/11 context.


A Court Divided? Analysing the Behavioural Patterns of Individual Judges in the UK Supreme Court


The thesis seeks to contribute to the debate on how legal adjudication works in practice, especially regarding the role of individual judges. Very often judging is viewed as a collective endeavour, with the the decision of ‘the court’ as a whole forming the basis of the law. Equally as important, however, are the contributions of each judge acting as an individual unit. It has been claimed that “individuality [is] the essential characteristic of the English judicial function” (Blom-Cooper and Drewry) and my work seeks to examine to what extent this ‘individuality’ comes through in the UK context by trying to measure judicial behaviour (in terms of both case outcomes as well as reasoning). My work focuses on the UK Supreme Court, using a ten-year dataset of all cases handed down from 2009 to 2019. In particular, I am interested in investigating the following questions:

  • Do judges demonstrate (noteworthy) patterns of individual judicial behaviour?
  • Do judges’ behavioural patterns vary significantly between each other?
  • Do judges’ behavioural patterns vary significantly across different areas and types of case?
  • Does this affect the outcome of cases and is there a possibility for prediction depending on the judge sitting on the case?
  • What might explain these patterns (or lack thereof)?


The dissertation is, of course, a work in progress, but I am always interested in any comments or questions about it: my contact email is



Professor Mark Elliott and Dr Davis Erdos

Representative Publications


S Greer, L Bell and L Graham, Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights in the United Kingdom (CUP, forthcoming)


Journal publications:

J Boddy and L Graham, "FJM v United Kingdom: the Taming of Article 8?" (2019) 2 Conveyancer 166

L Graham, "Statutory Secret Trials: the Judicial Approach to Closed Material Procedures under the Justice and Security Act 2013" (2019) 38(2) Civil Justice Quarterly 189

L Graham, "Tariq v United Kingdom: Out with a whimper? The final word on the closed material procedure at the European Court of Human Rights" (2019) 25(1) European Public Law 43

L Graham, "Case Comment: Beuze v Belgium" (2019) 3 Criminal Law Review 230

L Graham, "From Vinter to Hutchinson and Back Again? The Story of Life Imprisonment Cases in the European Court of Human Rights" (2018) 3 European Human Rights Law Review 258



L Graham, "Book Review: Human Rights in the UK and the Influence of Foreign Jurisprudence" [2019] Public Law 247


Academic papers:

"When Strasbourg Mumbles: ‘Dialogue’ between the ECtHR and the UK Supreme Court in an era of European Rights Scepticism", presented at SLSA 2019, University of Leeds, 3-5 April 2019

"A Collapse of the Dialogue Model between the European Court of Human Rights and the United Kingdom Supreme Court?" presented at Human Rights Law Centre, University of Nottingham, 29 March 2019

"Individual Judicial Behaviour on the United Kingdom Supreme Court", presented at OxonCourts Judicial Studies Colloquium, University of Oxford, 1 March 2019

"Closed Trials and secret evidence in the United Kingdom: Three worrying trends for human rights", presented at Contemporary Challenges to Human Rights Law conference, University of Brighton, 1 December 2018

"The European Court's Abortion Jurisprudence: Which Judges, Which Rights?", presented at The Development of Abortion Rights in a Changing Europe, University of Cambridge, 28 September 2018

"Lady Justices on the Court of Appeal and the Propensity to Dissent", presented at the HRC Expert Seminar on Gender and the Judiciary, University of Ghent, 27 April 2018

"Quantification of judicial decision-making in the USA and the rest of the world", presented at the BACL Postgraduate Workshop on Comparative Law, University of Cambridge, 16-17 April 2018


Talks and lectures:

"What Mirror Principle? Lords Mance, Hughes and Carnwath Take On Strasbourg", presented at Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge, 29 April 2019

Who are our judges and why does it matter?", presented at Queen Mary University of London, 11 April 2019

"When Can the Supreme Court Depart from Strasbourg Authority?", presented at University of Leicester, 20 February 2019

"How Judges (Really) Judge", presented at Pembroke College, University of Cambridge, 31 January 2019

"Exporting the Attitudinal Model: Preliminary Evidence from the UK Supreme Court", presented at European University Institute, Florence, 22 January 2019


Contributions to blogs and online media:

L Graham, "Petukhov v Ukraine No 2: Life Sentences Incompatible with the Convention, but only in Eastern Europe?" (Strasbourg Observers, 26 March 2019)

L Graham, "Hallam v Secretary of State: Under What Circumstances Can the Supreme Court Depart from Strasbourg Authority?" (UK Constitutional Law Blog, 4 February 2019)

L Graham, "Lady Justices and Dissent on the Court of Appeal of England and Wales" (UK Constitutional Law Blog, 15 November 2018)

L Graham, "Tariq v United Kingdom: Closed Material Procedures Green-Lit by European Court" (Strasbourg Observers, 8 May 2018)

L Graham, “Haralambous: The Supreme Court, Closed Proceedings and the Common Law, Round Three” (OxHRH Blog, 25 January 2018)

L Graham, “The European Court of Human Rights and the Emerging Right to Health” (OxHRH Blog, 11 May 2017)

L Graham, “Ahmed v United Kingdom: European Court of Human Rights still skirting around jury bias” (OxHRH Blog, 25 October 2016)