The EPLC was established in 2013. It is an annual conference organised by PhD students at Edinburgh Law School. It aims to showcase new and innovative research by postgraduate students from throughout the UK and beyond in the fields of law and criminology. Previous conferences have included the following themes and speakers:


2021 – “Great Expectations – When Law Meets Reality” 

This conference examined the relationship between the expectations we have of the law, and how the legal system operates in reality. The keynote speakers were: Lady Wolffe, judge of the Court of Session; Richard Sparks, Professor of Criminology at the University of Edinburgh; and Sharon Cowan, Professor of Feminist and Queer Legal Studies at the University of Edinburgh.


2020 – “Law and the New World Order” 

This conference examined how the law responds to the multiplicity of issues and challenges created by increasing political uncertainty. The keynote speaker was Professor Andrew Lang, Professor of International Law and Global Governance at the University of Edinburgh.


2018 – “The law as it should be” 

This conference explored the various political and social issues that necessitate legal change, the law’s responses to these issues, and the notion of legal change itself. The keynote speaker was Doctor Rumiana Yotova, Lecturer in International Law, Fellow and Director of Studies in Law at the University of Cambridge.


2017 – “Law and its Boundaries” 

This conference considered the role of legal regulation at a pivotal point in our history when it seemed that many legal, political, and technological boundaries were coming under unprecedented strain. The keynote speaker was Professor Sionaidh Douglas-Scott, Anniversary Chair in Law at Queen Mary, University of London.


2016 – “Law in an age of Technological Management” 

This conference considered the impact of various technological developments on the law. The keynote speaker was Professor Roger Brownsword, Professor of Law at King’s College London.


2014 – “Innovation in the law: New challenges, New perspectives”

This conference examined how the law could be reconceptualised in new and innovative ways to meet emerging global challenges and included presentations on rethinking international law, states’ rights, secession and self-determination and theories of justice and the judicial role. The keynote speakers were Dr Shawn Harmon, Reader at the University of Edinburgh; Professor Lesley Mcara, Professor of Penology at the University of Edinburgh; and Professor Burkhard Schaffer, Professor of Computational Legal Theory at the University of Edinburgh.


2013 – “Law, Individual, Community” 

This conference explored the various ways the law interacts with both individuals and communities and included presentations on liberalism versus communitarianism and community interests and the protection of the environment. The keynote speakers were Martin Loughlin, Professor of Public Law at LSE; and John Harris, Sir David Alliance Professor of Bioethics at the University of Manchester.