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RichardWhitecrossV2.jpgDr Richard W Whitecross
Associate Professor in Dispute Resolution,
Delict and Professional Practice

The Business School
Contact details
Room: 3/50, Craiglockhart Campus
Tel: +44 (0) 131 455 4381
Email: R.Whitecross@napier.ac.uk
Qualifications (Academic)
MA (Hons) History; LLB (Ord) ; LLM, MSc (Taught) Social Anthropology; MSc (Research) Social Anthropology (Distinction); PhD in Legal Anthropology. University of Edinburgh.
Qualifications (Professional)
Research Areas
Child Law and Children’s Rights; Comparative Law; Delict; Dispute Resolution; Administrative Justice; Law and the Environment; Legal Pluralism; Human Rights and Refugees; Law in South Asia.
Richard is lecturer in Delict, Dispute Resolution and Ethics in the Centre for Law. He is joint personal development tutor ('PDT') for students in Year 3 of the LLB Programme. 
Richard is a member of the University’s Child and Family Law and Policy Team. Among other things, the Team research contemporary issues in Child and Family Law and comment on legal and social policy reform. Richard is Programme Leader for the Business School Doctorate in Business Administration.
Prior to joining the Law Team at Edinburgh Napier University, Richard was a Senior Analyst working in Justice Analytical Services, Scottish Government. Before joining the Scottish Government, Richard was held a number of research and teaching positions at the University of Edinburgh in the School of Social and Political Science. Whilst at the University of Edinburgh, he was a regular expert witness in Asylum cases across the UK. Law and in particular how law works has consistently informed his research interest. Richard carried out ethnographic fieldwork in Nepal, Bhutan and West Bengal between 1999 and 2001. He was awarded his PhD in December 2002. Richard worked as a lawyer at Burness. Richard taught on the Diploma at Edinburgh Law School between 1993 and 1998.

Teaching and Administrative Responsibilities
Richard contributes to teaching on a wide range of modules. He is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and is the module leader for:
  • Obligations 2 (LLB Ordinary)
  • Legal Profession, Dispute Resolution and Ethics (LLB Ord)
  • Legal Practice in the 21st Century (LLB Honours)
In addition to his Law teaching, Richard also delivers doctoral classes. He currently supervises 11 doctoral candidates. Richard sits on the Business School Research Integrity Committee and the Business School Research Degrees Committee. In addition, he represents the Law team at the Business School LTA Committee. He is also a member of the teaching Fellows Steering Committee.
Richard is Programme Leader of the DBA. He has successfully supervised a number of doctoral and masters students and supervises doctoral research across a range of subjects, including criminology, court reform, and change management. Richard has been regularly nominated/shortlisted for Student LTA awards.
Current Research Activities
Richard is currently researching a number of papers on child law and domestic violence.
His most recent chapter “ Article 3: Adoption In and From India and Nepal” is based on a paper presented at the third annual Colloquium on the Rights of the Child Implementation Project (CRC-IP), Edinburgh, organized by Professor E Sutherland and Dr Lesley-Anne Barnes Macfarlane in June 2015. Richard is, in addition, writing two conference papers to be presented in Bonn (December 2015) and in Bergen (June 2016).
Richard has research interests in the following areas:
  • Administrative justice and tribunals, mediation and alternative dispute resolution.
  • Migration and immigration policies.
  • Regulation and governance.
  • Environmental and planning law.
  • Impact of economic changes on access to justice
  • Citizenship – policies of inclusion and exclusion.
  • Human Rights and, in particular, Child rights.
  • Comparative approaches to law
  • Democratisation and multiculturalism and the role of law.
  • Corporate social responsibility and its role in developing markets.
  • Legal education – especially public legal capacity.
  • Legal change and the impact of civil and criminal reforms.
  • Comparative Law, in particular India and South and South East Asia.
  • Qualitative research methods.
Richard would welcome applications from prospective research students in relation to any of the above fields.
University Positions Held 
  • Edinburgh Napier Business School Research Degrees Committee
  • Edinburgh Napier Business School Research Integrity Committee
  • Edinburgh Napier Business School LTA Committee
  • Edinburgh Napier University Child and Family Law and Policy Team member 
  • Edinburgh Napier Teaching Fellow
  • Edinburgh Napier Special Interest Group: Coaching and Mentoring.
  • External Professional Doctorates and DBA Programme Reviewer, Northampton Business School, Northampton University.
  • Editorial Board member of Law and Buddhism journal (Hein).
  • Law Society of Scotland Administrative Justice Committee, Vice-Convener 
  • Law Society of Scotland Immigration and Asylum Committee, Committee Member
  • Law Society Equality Law Committee Member
  • Children in Scotland (membership for University Child and Family Law and Policy Team)
  • Executive Committee, Family Law Academic Network
  • Higher Education Academy
Academic Memberships
Fellow of
  • Royal Society of Arts
  • Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland
  • Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain
  • Alumnus of the Rockefeller Institute.
Member of
  • Socio-Legal Studies Association
  • Society of Legal Scholars
  • Law Society of Scotland
Selected Publications
  • Levy, L., Santhakumaran,D., & Whitecross, R W 2014 What Works to Reduce Crime: A Summary of the Evidence. The Scottish Government.
  • Whitecross, R W 2011 Child Welfare Hearing Reports: Commissioning, Preparation and Use in Scottish Courts. The Scottish Government.
  • Whitecross, R W 2008 "Transgressing the Law: Karma, Theft and its punishment", Revues d'études Tibétaines 45 - 74. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2007 "Separation of Religion and Law?: Buddhism, Secularism and the Constitution of Bhutan", Buffalo Law Review. 707 - 711. 
  • Whitecross, R W & Simoni, A 2007 "'Gross National Happiness' and the "Heavenly Stream of Justice": Modernisation and Dispute Resolution in the Kingdom of Bhutan", American Journal of Comparative Law.
Book Chapters 
  • Whitecross, R.W. “Article 3: Adoption In and From India and Nepal“ In UN Convention on the Rights of the Child: Best Interests, Welfare and Well-being, (eds.) Elaine E Sutherland and Lesley-Anne Barnes Macfarlane, Cambridge University Press (forthcoming: 2016)
  • Whitecross R.W. forthcoming “Law, “Tradition” and Legitimacy: Contesting Driglam namzha”. In Development Challenges in Bhutan, (ed.). Johannes D Schmidt, Sage Publications (forthcoming: 2016).
  • Whitecross, R W 2013 “Separating Religion and Politics? Buddhism and the Bhutanese Constitution.” Constitutionalism in South Asia. S Khilnani ed. Oxford; Oxford University Press. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2012 "Bhutan" In Bretelsman Transformation Index 2012. A Croissant (ed). Heidelberg, Germany. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2012 "Bhutan", Countries at the Crossroads: A survey of democratic governance. (eds.) J Dizard and others. Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2009 "Intimacy, Loyalty and State Formation: the Spectre of the 'Anti-National'". Traitors: Suspicion, Intimacy and the Ethics of State Building. (eds.)S Thirangama and T Kelly, Philadelphia: Pennsylvania State University Press. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2009 "'Keeping the Stream of Justice Pure': the Buddhicisation of Bhutanese law?" Law and Anthropology in a Trans-national World. (eds.) F Benda Beckman, K Benda Beckman and A Griffiths, Oxford: Berghahn Press. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2009 "Migrants, Settlers and Refugees: Law and the Contestation of 'Citizenship' in Bhutan" Spatialising Law: Law, Territory and Space (eds.) F Benda Beckman, K Benda Beckman and A Griffiths. Oxford: Berghahn Press 
  • Whitecross, R W 2007 "Changing the legal landscape: the professionalisation of jabmi". In The anthropology of Bhutan (eds.) F Pommaret and J Ardussi, Brill: Leiden. 
  • Whitecross, R W & D Mills 2006 "Professional apprenticeship or contract labour: the use of teaching assistants in Anthropology." Engagements with Learning and Teaching in Higher Education (eds.) Denise M Carter and Michaela Lord. C-SAP: University of Birmingham. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2004 "The Thrimzhung Chenmo and the Emergence of the contemporary Bhutanese legal system", The Spider and the Piglet: collected papers on Bhutanese society, (eds.) K Ura and S Kinga, pp355 - 379.
Professional Publications
  • Whitecross, R W 2006 "Employment Tribunals and the Self-represented claimant", Greens' Employment Law Review.
Book Reviews
  • Whitecross, R W forthcoming “ Belief, Law and Policy in Europe”, SCOLAG
  • Whitecross, R W 2014 “Edwards and Lane EU Law” Scottish Parliamentary Review.
  • Whitecross, R W 2013 “Arbitration”, SCOLAG
  • Whitecross, R W 2010 “Thin Air” Review for the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Society. July.
Funding Awards
  • 2013 Higher Education Authority: Law Strategic Project Award: £4,000 
  • 2013 Edinburgh Napier Law Cluster – Research Funding - £1,000
  • 2007 Scottish Executive for Review of Administrative Justice in Scotland, £10,000. 
  • 2004 Frederick Williamson Award (Cambridge University) £2,500
  • 2004 British Academy Travel Award £1,500.
  • 2004 Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland – Research Grant - £2,500.
  • 2003 ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship 
  • 2001 Royal Anthropological Institute, Sutasoma Prize for outstanding research merit - £500.
  • 1998 ESRC Postgraduate Research Studentship Award
  • 1997 ESRC Postgraduate Studentship Award
  • 1987 Carnegie Scholarship 
  • 1986 Carnegie Scholarship 
Selected Papers / Conferences
  • Whitecross, R W  June 2016 “The Architecture of Justice: Buddhism, Culture and the Evolution of the Modern Court.” 13th International Association of Tibetan Studies, Bergen.
  • Whitecross, R W December 2015 “Missions, Migrations and Manumission: Labour in Bhutan from Founder to Father of the Nation“. Invited paper at the Social History of Tibetan Societies conference,” History and Organisation of Labour in Tibetan Societies”. University of Bonn.
  • Whitecross, R W 2015 “Implementing Article 3 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Adoption In and From South Asia”. Colloquium on the Rights of the Child Implementation Project (CRC-IP), Edinburgh.
  • Whitecross, R W 2015 “In the Shadow of the Commonwealth: Legal Education and Democratisation in Bhutan“,Commonwealth Legal Education Association Conference, Glasgow Caledonian University.
  • Whitecross, R W 2015 “ Regulation, Environmental Conservation, Plants and Local Values: The Importance of Interdisciplinarity” Invited workshop presentation, Colloquium on Religion, Environment and Global Concepts of Conservation in South Asia, School of Oriental and African Studies, London.
  • Whitecross, R W 2014 “New Horizons? The Right to Environmental Protection and the Supreme Court of Bhutan” 23rd European Conference on South Asian Studies.
  • Whitecross, R W 2014 “Learning Lessons: The PDT and Skills Development in the LLB “ Higher Education Authority: Social Science Conference, Birmingham.
  • Whitecross, R W 2014 “Professional Development “ Higher Education Authority, Invited workshop presentation, The Future of Legal Education, Loughborough University.
  • Whitecross, R W 2011, “Translation, Transplantation and Transformation: Legal Education and Democratisation in Bhutan”. Invited seminar presentation. St Anthony’s College, Oxford.
  • Whitecross, R W 2009 “From ‘contract of monarchy’ to ‘written constitution’: Constitutions as political document in the South Asian context”. British Association for South Asian Studies, University of Edinburgh.
  • Whitecross, R W & Adler, M  2007 “Transforming the Administrative Justice Landscape” Law and Society Conference, Berlin.
  • Whitecross, R W & Adler, M 2007 “Can Self-Representation be made to work?” Invited seminar speakers, Faculty of Law, Strathclyde University. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2007, “Creating the Constitution: Law and political transformation in South Asia – Nepal and Bhutan compared”, Invited speaker, Mongolia, Inner Asia Studies Unit (MIASU) University of Cambridge.
  • Whitecross, R W 2006 “Conforming Bodies, Treacherous Minds: the spectre of the “anti-national”. Invited panellist at Treason and the Art of the Political conference, University of Edinburgh. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2006 “Law, Religion and Secularism: the case of Bhutan”. Invited panellist and discussant at the Law, Buddhism and Social Change Conference, Baldy Center for Law and Social Policy, State University of New York at Buffalo.  
  • Whitecross, R W 2006 “‘In the Hands of the Children’: In the Shadow of Rights of the Child”. Invited speaker at the Law and Society in South Asia conference, Yale University.
  • Whitecross, R W 2006 “Transgressing the law: Karma, Theft and Punishment”. Paper presented at the invitation of the Baldy Centre for Law and Society at the Rockefeller Foundation, Villa Serbelloni, Bellagio. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2005 “Citizenship and Belonging: Law, Culture and Community in a Himalayan Kingdom” Paper presented by invitation as part of a series on Legal Culture, Centre for Socio-legal Studies, Oxford. 
  • Whitecross, R W 2004 “The ‘Politics’ of Legal Research: Negotiating the Field”, invited speaker, Department of Constitutional and Comparative Law, University of Florence
External Academic and Research Activity
  • ESRC peer review college member
  • Peer reviewer for:

- Law and Social Inquiry
- Law and Society Review
- Journal of Democratic Politics
- European Bulletin of Himalayan Research
- Asian Policies and Politics
- Journal of the Commonwealth Law and Legal Education 

  • Invited Chair and discussant, Bhutanese Resettled Refugees Conference, School of Oriental and African Studies, London.
  • Expert contributor to Freedom House 2004 – 2012
  • Invited Expert Contributor to Kellog Institute- Gothenburg University, Varieties of Democracy Project.
  • Invited Academic participant at Logic Modelling Workshop on Administrative Justice, Scottish Government 
  • Expert contributor, Jane’s Sentinel 
  • Invited respondent to research by Professor S Halliday and Professor C Scott on liability, insurance and regulatory framework, University of Strathclyde.
  • Expert author, Reporters without Frontiers
  • Expert contributor, World Rule of Law Index.
  • Editor, Scottish Parliamentary Review.
  • Expert Witness in Asylum cases 2002 – 2007.
  • Research proposal referee for:

- Royal Society of Edinburgh

- British Academy