Professor Amanda Perry-Kessaris awarded £33k Leverhulme Research Fellowship for socio-legal design project

Kent Law School Professor Amanda Perry-Kessaris has been awarded a nine-month Leverhulme Research Fellowship, worth £33,000, for her project ‘Doing Socio-legal Research in Design Mode.’

At the centre of the project is the question: How might design enhance our understanding of, and our ability to communicate about, law as a social phenomenon; and at what cost? Professor Perry-Kessaris said: ‘Design-based approaches such as visualisation and prototyping have for the last decade increasingly been identified as distinctive and useful; and adopted in other fields of practice from business, to civil society, to government. This project explores how entering ‘design mode’ might enable socio-legal research processes to become more social, with associated improvements in research quality and reach.’

The project draws on insights from original experimentation that Professor Perry-Kessaris has undertaken with 100 socio-legal researchers, as well as from her wider design thinking and practice (examples of which can be accessed via her blog and via her page on Vimeo.) It also builds on her publications ‘Legal design for practice, activism, policy and research’ 46:2 Journal of Law and Society , ‘The pop-up museum of legal objects project: an experiment in ‘socio-legal design’’ 68:2 Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly Special Issue on the Pop Up Museum of Legal Objects 225-44 and ‘The case for a visualized economic sociology of legal development’ 67 Current Legal Problems 169-98  which was awarded the 2015 SLSA Article Prize.

Professor Perry-Kessaris will complete a monograph for publication by Routledge and, with Emily Allbon from City University Law School, will hold the UK’s first workshop on Legal Design. Funding for the workshop was secured in February with a grant of £1527 from the Socio-Legal Studies Association.

Professor Perry-Kessaris specialises in empirically grounded, theoretically informed, cross-disciplinary approaches to law. In addition to qualifications in law, she has an MA in Visual Communication and Graphic Design. She teaches undergraduate law students in the field of International Economic Law and postgraduate students in Research Methodology. She tweets @aperrykessaris.