The Kilbrandon LecturesPast Speakers


Professor Phil Scraton

Professor Phil Scraton is a criminologist who works in the public sphere. He is professor emeritus in the School of Law at Queen’s University Belfast. Widely published on critical theory, incarceration and children/young people, he was a member of the Liberty Advisory Committee on deaths in custody and the JUSTICE panel on coronial powers. He led the Hillsborough Independent Panel’s research team and was principal author of its ground-breaking 2012 Report, Hillsborough. In 2016 he published a revised edition of Hillsborough: The Truth. Seconded to the families’ legal teams throughout the 2014-2016 inquests, he was consultant on, and contributor to, the 2017 BAFTA winning ESPN/BBC documentary ‘Hillsborough’. He holds a Leverhulme Research Fellowship. Most recently, he was co-author of ‘The Report of the Independent Panel of Inquiry into the Circumstances of the H-Block and Armagh Prison Protests 1976-1981 (Coiste, 2021), ‘Deaths in Contested Circumstances and Coroners’ Inquests’ (ICCL, 2021), and Truth, Acknowledgement and Accountability: Mother and Baby Institutions, Magdalene Laundries and Workhouses (NI Executive, 2021). He was awarded the Freedom of the City of Liverpool in recognition of his Hillsborough research and refused an OBE. 



Professor Ann Skelton

Professor Ann Skelton is an academic lawyer and internationally recognised researcher in the fields of restorative justice and children’s rights. She holds BA, LLB and LLD degrees. She is Professor of Law at the University of Pretoria, where she holds the Chair: Education Law in Africa, and Professor of Law at Leiden University, where she holds the Chair: Children’s Rights in a Sustainable World. She is also a Visiting Professor at the University of Strathclyde’s Institute for Inspiring Children’s Futures. In the 1990s, Professor Skelton was appointed by the Mandela cabinet to lead the committee that drafted South Africa’s Child Justice Act (2008). A pioneer in strategic litigation on children’s rights, and counsel in several landmark cases in the Constitutional Court, she is a member of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, having been elected in 2020 for a second term of office. 

Claire Lightowler

Claire Lightowler

Dr Claire Lightowler is an academic particularly known for her work in children's rights and youth justice. She was director of the Children and Young People's Centre for Justice (CYCJ) at the University of Strathclyde from 2013-2021. Among her publications is the major report, Rights Respecting? Scotland's approach to children in conflict with the law This report explored whether Scotland was complying with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and what it would look like if children’s rights formed the basis of Scotland’s approach to children in conflict with the law. Through this work Claire became increasingly aware of the need for children and young people accused of offending to benefit from specialist legal representation, which acknowledges their rights and legal status as children or young people; and is informed by knowledge about child development and trauma. Dr Lightowler left CYCJ to study a law degree at the University of Edinburgh.  

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Madeleine Bunting

Madeleine Bunting is an English journalist and author and honorary fellow of the University of Cardiff. She read history at Cambridge University and studied politics at Harvard University. Ms Bunting was formerly an associate editor and columnist at The Guardian and is a regular broadcaster for the BBC. She has won awards for her writing on global inequality and international development. Closer to home she has been recognised by the Commission for Racial Equality for drawing new voices into the media from the British Muslim community. She has a deep affinity with Scotland which is very clearly conveyed in her 2016 book Love of Country: A Hebridean Journey, published in 2016. Her Kilbrandon Lecture was based on her 2020 book Labours of Love: The Crisis of Care which addresses the most important issue of our time - care - how it is provided, organised and paid for and most importantly what care is.

professor manfred nowak

Professor Manfred Nowak

Manfred Nowak is an Austrian human rights lawyer and academic. Born in Bad Aussee, he was educated at the universities of Vienna and Columbia.  Professor Nowak has had a distinguished career as an international jurist in human rights, having served on many tribunals and authored more than 600 publications on constitutional, administrative and international law and human rights. He served as the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture from 2004 to 2010 and as a judge at the Human Rights Chamber for Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 2016, he was appointed Independent Expert leading the UN Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty. He received the Bruno Kreisky Prize for Human Rights for outstanding achievements for services to international human rights in 2007, the University of Oslo’s Human Rights Award in 2013, and the Otto Hahn Peace Medal in 2014.

Dame Elish Angiolini DBE, PC, QC, FRSA, FRSE

Elish Frances Angiolini is a Scottish lawyer and academic. Born in Glasgow, she studied law at the University of Strathclyde, after which she pursued legal training with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in Scotland and became a procurator fiscal. Following a distinguished career as a public prosecutor, she was appointed Solicitor General for Scotland in 2001, and from 2006-2011 she held the position of Lord Advocate, the Scottish Government’s most senior law officer. Dame Elish then entered academic life, first as a visiting professor in the University of Strathclyde Law School, before being appointed as principal of St Hugh’s College, Oxford. She is pro-vice chancellor of the University of Oxford and chancellor of the University of the West of Scotland. She has led several high-profile public inquiries, including the investigation into the disposal of baby ashes at Mortonhall Crematorium in Edinburgh (2013), and the practices of crematoria across Scotland. In 2011 she was appointed DBE and received the special achievement award from the International Association of Prosecutors.

The Right Honourable Nicola Sturgeon PC, MSP, First Minister of Scotland

Nicola Sturgeon is a Scottish lawyer and politician. Born in Irvine, she studied law at the University of Glasgow before completing a legal traineeship in Glasgow. She subsequently worked as a solicitor in private practice in Stirling, and as a senior solicitor in the Drumchapel Law and Money Advice Centre in Glasgow. First elected to the Scottish Parliament as a regional MSP for Glasgow in 1999, she is MSP for Glasgow Southside. Ms Sturgeon served as Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing from 2007 to 2012 and Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure, Investment and Cities from 2012 to 2014, and Deputy First Minister of Scotland. She became leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and First Minister of Scotland in November 2014.

Professor Guy Standing

Guy Standing is an English economist and academic. He studied economics at the universities of Sussex, Illinois, and Cambridge from which he received his doctorate. From 1975 to 2006 he held a range of senior posts with the International Labour Organisation, before being appointed professor of economic security at the University of Bath. From 2012 to 2015 he was professor of development at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in the University of London and was then appointed as a professorial research associate in the School. Professor Standing is a founder member and honorary co-president of the Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), a non-governmental organisation that promotes a basic income for all. He is the author of many books, journal articles and reports.

Professor Alexis Jay OBE

Alexis Jay is a Scottish social worker and child-care expert. Born in Edinburgh, she studied social work at Moray House College of Education, now part of the University of Edinburgh. After a career as a social worker in Edinburgh and Glasgow, she was director of social work and housing for West Dunbartonshire Council from 2000 to 2005. She then set up the first independent inspection body for social services in Scotland, and from 2011 to 2013 she was the Scottish Government’s chief social work adviser. Professor Jay chaired the 2014 inquiry into the sexual exploitation of children in Rotherham, England and wrote the inquiry report which concluded that 1,400 children had been subjected to sexual abuse. In 2014 she was appointed to the statutory inquiry into child sexual abuse in England and Wales and became chair in 2016. She is chair of the Life Changes Trust and of CELCIS, the Centre for Excellence for Children’s Care and Protection, at the Strathclyde University where she is also a visiting professor. Professor Jay was awarded an OBE in 2012 and an honorary doctorate by the University of Strathclyde in 2015.

Lord David Hope KT, QC, PC, FRSE

David Hope is a Scottish jurist. Baron Hope of Craighead, was, as Lord Hope, Lord President of the Court of Session and Lord Justice General, Scotland’s most senior judge. In 2009, Lord Hope was appointed one of the first justices of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, and was Deputy President until his retirement as a judge in 2013. He was Chancellor of the University of Strathclyde from 1998 to 2013, and appointed Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 2015.

Professor Frank Cottrell-Boyce

Frank Cottrell-Boyce is an English screenwriter and author. Born in Rainhill in Merseyside, he studied English at Keble College, Oxford, gaining a doctorate. He is an award-winning author of children’s fiction, as well as a playwright and screenwriter for both television and large screen. His debut children’s novel, Millions, won the CILIP Carnegie medal in 2003. He wrote the story line for the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in London in 2012. Professor Cottrell-Boyce was appointed the first professor of reading at Liverpool Hope University and was awarded an honorary doctorate in literature by Edge Hill University in 2013.

Professor Sir Harry Burns

Harry Burns is a Scottish surgeon, academic and public health expert. He graduated in medicine from the University of Glasgow, becoming a general surgeon. He was a consultant surgeon at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, experience which significantly influenced his concern for the effect of poverty on general health and wellbeing.  After a period as medical director at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, Professor Burns became Director of Public Health for the Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board. He held the post of Chief Medical Officer for Scotland from 2005 to 2014, after which he was appointed as professor of global public health in the University of Strathclyde. Professor Burns received a knighthood in 2011. 

Professor Kathleen Marshall

Kathleen Anne Marshall is a Scottish lawyer, legal scholar and child-care expert. She graduated in law from the University of Glasgow and became a solicitor in local government. She has published and lectured widely on children’s rights and the law of children and families. She was director of the Scottish Child Law Centre from 1989 to 1994 and appointed as Scotland’s first Commissioner for Children and Young People, serving between 2004 and 2009. Professor Marshall chaired the Edinburgh Inquiry into Abuse and Protection of Children in Care (report produced in 1999) and the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Northern Ireland (report produced in 2014). 

Björn Cronstedt

Björn Cronstedt is a Swedish cleric, journalist and campaigner against child sexual exploitation. He graduated from the University of Uppsala and was ordained as a priest in the Church of Sweden. Mr Cronstedt worked for Save the Children Sweden in Latin America and founded an international organisation aiming to eradicate child prostitution and pornography, before working with the government of Vietnam to support families at risk of commercial and sexual exploitation. 

Dr Trond Waage

Trond Waage is a Norwegian international child rights expert. He worked for the Norwegian Government, was Director of Research at Child Watch International and led the TV Department at the University of Oslo. He was Norway’s Children’s Ombudsman for eight years and initiated the European Network of Ombudspersons for Children (ENOC). Subsequently, he became Special Adviser on children’s rights at the UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre in Florence, Italy. 

Maud de Boer-Baquicchio

Maud de Boer-Baquicchio is a Dutch jurist and former UN Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child pornography and child prostitution. She was born in Hoensbroek, Netherlands and studied French and law at the University of Leiden. For some years she worked in the Secretariat of the European Commission on Human Rights, becoming Head of Division in 1990. After a period as Deputy Registrar at the European Court of Human Rights, she was elected as Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe. 

Professor Sir Neil MacCormick, FBA, FRSE, QC

Neil MacCormick (1941-2001) was a Scottish legal academic, author and politician. He studied philosophy and English literature at the University of Glasgow, jurisprudence at Balliol College, Oxford, and gained the LLD by research at the University of Edinburgh. He was Regius Professor of Public Law at the University of Edinburgh for 36 years, including a period of leave of absence during which he served as a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for the Scottish National Party from 1999 to 2004. Professor MacCormick received many honours during an illustrious academic and political career, including honorary degrees from seven universities.

Professor Anthony Clare

Professor Anthony Clare (1942-2007) was an Irish psychiatrist. He was professor of clinical psychiatry at Trinity College, University of Dublin and medical director of St Joseph’s Hospital, Dublin, having previously been professor and head of the department of psychological medicine at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London. He was the author of several books about psychiatry and related topics and of more than 100 research papers on topics such as childhood sexual abuse and adult depression. He was best known as a broadcaster, notably for the BBC radio programme, ‘In the Psychiatrist’s Chair,’ which ran for many series between 1982 and 2001.

The Right Honourable Donald Dewar, PC, MP, Secretary of State for Scotland

Donald Dewar (1937-2000) was a Scottish lawyer and politician who served as Secretary of State for Scotland in the British Labour Party under Prime Minister Tony Blair from 1997 to 1999. He was the main architect of the Scotland Act 1998, the constitutional framework for devolved government in Scotland, and after election as the Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) for the Glasgow Anniesland constituency, he was elected as First Minister of a Labour-Liberal Democrat administration in May 1999. Between 1970 and 1974, in between periods of service as a member of the UK Parliament, Mr Dewar was a Reporter to the Children’s Panel, based in Hamilton. He died in office on 11 October 2000 of a brain haemorrhage. 

Professor Frederick Stone

Professor Frederick (Fred) Hope Stone (1921-2009) was a Scottish child psychiatrist. He was professor of child and adolescent psychiatry in the University of Glasgow from 1977 to 1987. Recognised by peers as one of the leading psychiatrists of his generation, he led important developments in infant mental health, autism, liaison psychiatry, adoption and juvenile justice. He was secretary general of the International Association of Child Psychiatry, chair of the Scottish Division of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and president of Young Minds. He was a member of the Kilbrandon Committee, and in retirement chaired the Strathclyde Children’s Panel Advisory Panel.

Professor Sanford J. Fox

Professor Sanford (Sandy) Jacob Fox (1929-2000) was an American legal academic. He was professor of law at Boston College from 1959 until his death, was an international authority on the rights of the child and an advisor on the drafting of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (1990). In 1976, Professor Fox received a US Department of Justice research grant to study the Scottish Children’s Hearings system which led to the report, Children Out of Court (1981), co-authored with Kathleen Murray and Fred Martin. Professor Fox received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Glasgow in 1997 in recognition of his expertise in juvenile law and his work internationally for children’s rights.