As Director of Postgraduate Research at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS), I am delighted to welcome you to our website.

The Institute has an outstanding scholarly community, with many honours, awards, and achievements by students and staff. Our areas of research cover a broad range of legal topics.

Our postgraduate student community is at the heart of our scholarly research, with – on average – between 50 – 75 research students each year, as well as a sizeable LLM cohort across our internationally esteemed programmes in legislative drafting. We pride ourselves on providing a student-centred learning environment, delivered by leading experts in their fields. Each year, we offer training courses to PhD students from any institution on ‘How to get a PhD in Law’ and ‘Legal Research Methods’.

Numerous outstanding lawyers, judges and influential leaders – from public and private sectors, within academia and outside – have passed through IALS, whether as students, colleagues, visiting fellows, and/or collaborators. Many others have visited us simply to use our leading library. We have a vibrant visiting fellows scheme as well as our long-established research fellows scheme

The library is at the heart of IALS. As one of the largest legal research libraries in Europe, with a vast collection of UK and international material, the library provides a welcoming place to conduct your own research, to attend numerous conferences/workshops/colloquia, or simply to discuss research in the cafe area downstairs. Three times per year, the library publishes its newsletter, with information on the library itself as well as events, publications, staff news and more. 

Since its establishment in 1947, IALS has acted as a national research institution, focused on promoting, facilitating and disseminating the results of high-quality legal research. We work closely with colleagues in other schools across the UK and further afield. We have excellent international links with leading law schools in other jurisdictions. From the outset, the general aims and objects of the Institute were stated to be ‘the prosecution and promotion of legal research and training of graduate students in its principles and methods.’

We have a track record of high-quality graduates, who maintain regular contact with the Institute. Many former students continue to visit us long after graduation, even delivering guest lectures on the LLM programmes or as part of our PhD Masterclass series

As a research student at IALS, you will have the opportunity to engage with, and learn from, many leaders in academia and legal practice. You will engage with a truly international group of scholars. You will have access to a world class library, alongside other resources and facilities and a vastly experienced professional student support team. Beyond this, you will challenge yourself to critically engage with contemporary legal issues; you will develop as an independent researcher and scholar. You will learn about the law, but also cultivate your own thoughts and perspectives about what the law should do. 

I look forward to meeting you.

Dr Colin King, Director of Postgraduate Research.