Faculty award recognises ground-breaking research

04 May 2018
Jane Norton - 2016

Congratulations to Senior Lecturer Dr Jane Norton, who has received the Faculty of Law’s Early Career Research Excellence Award in recognition of her ground-breaking research in the area of public law and legal theory.

Jane joined the Auckland Law School from the United Kingdom where she completed her doctorate at Balliol College, Oxford as a Clarendon Scholar and was then a lecturer at Birmingham Law School. Prior to living in Oxford she was an Associate-in-Law at Columbia Law School on a Fulbright Scholarship and a litigator in a large New York commercial law firm.

She has published a number of articles and in 2016 she published a monograph entitled Freedom of Religious Organisations (Oxford University Press). This work has had significant impact both domestically and internationally.

The book was the joint winner of the 2017 JF Northey Memorial Book Award for the best law book published by a New Zealand-based author in 2016. The adjudicators described this as a "scrupulous work of scholarship, which … elucidates the extent to which religious organisations are free to order their own affairs and to govern their memberships and members".

Freedom of Religious Organisations has since been cited in argument in the Supreme Court of Canada.

In 2017 the Australian Society of Legal Philosophers held a symposium around this book as part of their annual conference. Commentaries and Jane’s reply will be published in a special collection of the Australian Journal of Legal Philosophy in 2018.

With respect to research leadership, Jane has developed successful research networks in both Melbourne and Oxford. She has co-authored articles with academics at both institutions and organised visits to the Auckland Law School by leading international academics.

Jane contributes to international scholarship and policy. In 2016 she made a submission to the United Kingdom Parliament Home Affairs Select Committee enquiry into sharia councils. She is also assisting the United Kingdom Equality and Human Rights Commission in their independent inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire.