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Professor Richard W Whitecross


Richard is a Scots-qualified lawyer, and Head of Law at Edinburgh Napier University. He has an MA in History, LLB, LLM, MSc (Taught), MSc (Research), PhD in Political and Legal Anthropology. During his ESRC funded postdoctoral research he worked in the High Court of Justice, Thimphu, Bhutan on the role of technology in courts.

After teaching at the University of Edinburgh, he joined Justice Analytical Services, the Scottish Government where he lead on civil justice policy research. Whilst at the Scottish Government, he led on a number of data linkage projects. Richard moved to Edinburgh Napier in 2012 where he developed an Honours module focussed on the role of technology in law firms. In 2016, he presented research on the role of technology in law firm innovation (Trondheim) and is interested in how law firms are adapting technology, as well as, the barriers to innovation. Recognising the importance of innovation in law firms he designed and ran Innovation Challenges for law students to design and pitch their ideas to senior lawyers from Anderson Strathern, Dickson Minto, Morton Fraser, ShepherdWedderburn and Brodies. In 2021, at his request a new module, Law and Technology, is being introduced.

Richard’s main research tends to focus on civil and family law, and the role of technology in court processes. To build on his interest in innovation and the role of technology in law firm management, he is developing a new research project. He has held grants from, amongst others, the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland, the British Academy, the ESRC, the Royal Society of Edinburgh, the Scottish Government, and University of Edinburgh.

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