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Mr Lewis Graham's picture

Email

lg513@cam.ac.uk

Education CV

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

Fields of research

I have two main areas of interest, both involving courts, judges and politics. The first concerns judicial behaviour, and my PhD thesis focuses on the individual behaviour styles of the judges sitting on the UK Supreme Court. I am interested in the work of courts and judges more generally, including: the malleability of case law; the status and deployment of legal precedent; the exercise of judicial discretion; the phenomenon of dissent and the unique position of courts adjudicating in the area of human rights. 

The second is human rights law. I am particularly interested in the judicial approaches to rights under the HRA/ECHR, one salient example being the approach to fair trial rights in the context of the so-called 'closed material procedure'. I am currently working on a book with Professor Steven Greer (Bristol) and Dr Lindsey Bell (Bristol) exploring this alongside other human rights challenges in the post-9/11 context.

 

A Court Divided? Analysing the Voting Patterns of Individual Judges in the United Kingdom Supreme Court

Summary

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 lg513@cam.ac.uk.

 

Supervisors

Professor Mark Elliott and Dr Davis Erdos

Representative Publications

Books:

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

 

Journal publications:

L Graham, "Tariq v UK: Strasbourg's Final Word on the Closed Material Procedure" (forthcoming, European Public Law)

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

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

 

Academic papers:

"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 on 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 on 16-17 April 2018.

 

Contributions to blogs and online media:

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)