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Four researchers from Ulster University were among more than 500 delegates who presented their work at the Socio-Legal Studies Association conference last week.

The University of York hosted the conference from 6 to 8 April, two years since it was last held in a ‘face-to-face’ format. A new hybrid model allowed attendees to join on campus or via Zoom.

Prof Gráinne McKeever presented papers in two streams. Her first, in the stream on Social Rights, Citizenship and the Welfare State, set out findings from her recent work on discretionary support in Northern Ireland as part of a panel on the safety net of last resort for the poorest within the UK. The second, in the Civil Justice Systems and ADR stream, discussed a human centred design approach to developing support for litigants in person.

Dr Mark Simpson, who co-convenes the Social Rights stream with Dr Jed Meers, Dr Jackie Gulland and Ulster colleague Dr Ciara Fitzpatrick, set out some of his theoretical findings on the relevance of TH Marshall’s work on citizenships to the UK welfare state(s) under devolution.

PhD researchers Sasha Gillespie and Liam Edwards respectively presented emerging findings from their research on the ‘dis-abling’ as citizens of parent-carers of disabled children (Social Rights stream) and on judicial review and devolved legislation (Administrative Justice stream).

The SLSA conference, one of the UK’s two leading legal academic conference with participants from around the world, will be hosted by Ulster University in 2023.