New Book on Judicial Appointments Published

Book coverGraham Gee, Professor of Public Law in the School of Law, has co-edited (with Professor Erika Rackley from University of Birmingham) a collection of essays on Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity. The collection followed a major international conference—funded by, amongst others, the Socio Legal Studies Association and the School of Law—to mark the 10th anniversary of creation of the Judicial Appointments Commission in England and Wales (‘JAC’).

The collection brings together current and retired judges, officials, lawyers and academics from Australia, Canada, South Africa and the UK to explore the relationship between appointments and diversity. It includes essays from Lady Hale (the new President of the UK Supreme Court), Sir Thomas Legg (the former Permanent Secretary at the Lord Chancellor’s Department) and Christopher Stephens CBE (the former chair of the JAC). In bringing together 'insiders' and 'outsiders', the collection aims to reflect on what the JAC has done well during its first decade and where it might improve during the course of its next ten years. This blend of 'insider' and 'outsider' perspectives is significant since much of the debate about judicial appointments in recent years seems to have been a case of different camps speaking past each other. Several of the collection’s contributors reflect on the reasons why there have been such mismatched assessments of the JAC's first decade and how to move beyond this.