MLS Postdoctoral Fellow
Tom is an MLS Fellow at Melbourne Law School, member of the new MLS Constitution Transformation Network, Associate Director of the Edinburgh Centre for Constitutional Law at Edinburgh Law School, and a consultant on public law, human rights, and democracy-building. He has previously clerked for the Chief Justice of Ireland and has worked on a variety of development projects worldwide at Edinburgh University’s Global Justice Academy, and as a consultant on Council of Europe, European Union, International IDEA, and Irish government projects, most recently managing a major Council of Europe project on ‘Strengthening Judicial Ethics in Turkey’.
Tom’s research focuses on the connections between law, policy and democratic governance, with a particular focus on young democracies and fragile democracies. Forthcoming publications include a book on courts as ‘democracy-builders’ in post-authoritarian states: The Alchemists: Questioning Our Faith in Courts as Democracy-Builders (Cambridge University Press, October 2017). Recent publications include an article on courts as ‘democracy-builders’ in Global Constitutionalism, a working paper on a constitutional court for Sri Lanka, a policy paper on Brexit and a British Bill of Rights, a co-edited collection, Law and Policy in Latin America: Transforming Courts, Institutions, and Rights (Palgrave MacMillan, 2017), and a policy report on ‘The Judiciary and Constitutional Transitions’ (International IDEA and the International Development Law Organization (IDLO)).
His current research project concerns democratic decay worldwide and the use of public law as a remedial tool. He is a columnist for the International Journal of Constitutional Law (I-CONnect) blog, focusing on the theme of democratic decay, and he also tweets on public law, democracy building and democratic decay @DemocracyTalk.
He holds a Ph.D from the University of Edinburgh and law degrees from the European University Institute, Florence, and the Honorable Society of King’s Inns, has lectured at the universities of Edinburgh and Copenhagen, and has been an invited speaker at conferences and meetings in the US, Europe, Asia, South America and the Middle East.