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Philip Lawton

Formerly at Lancaster University

PhD supervision

Philip Lawton has experience of supervising over a score of successful Phd candidates and welcomes for consideration MPhil/Phd proposals on corporate law, corporate governance and also trusts law including legal transplantation and law in a post colonial context in these areas. He particularly enjoys comparative studies but in addition to theoretical emphasis he is also prepared to consider a wide range of socio-legal and/or empirical approaches.

Current Teaching

Current teaching includes company law, corporate governance and equity and trusts at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Courses taught in recent years include:LW206/now334 Company Law, LW214/now331 Law of Trusts, LLM120 Corporate Governance, LLM5231 Contracts and Companies, LW202 Introduction to Property Law, LW303 Law and Religion.


Career Details

Graduated from Leicester University and was called to the UK and HK SAR Bar. He spent some time in legal editorial work before moving into academia. In addition to a stint as a foriegn expert in Beijing based at the Beijing Institute of Business in 1987-88, he has taught at the Universities of Central Lancashire 1980-89, City University of Hong Kong 1989-99 and Leeds Metropolitan 1999-2001, before joining Lancaster University in September 2001.

Managerial and Administrative Experience

I haveconsiderable experience of course directorships including full and part time LLBs and Business Studies degrees.Experince as a member of universities' quality assurance committees, an academic auditor, and a chairman and vice-chairman of staff and student grievance and disciplinary committees.Considerable experience in course development and validation in relation to degrees at undergraduate and postgraduate level in the areas of law, business studies, management, accounting and finance and international degrees across these diciplines. As well as considerable experience as an examiner for professional bodies has sat on various sub committees of law reform bodies and the Hong Kong Stock-Exchange Working Party on Corporate Governance in the mid 1990s.

As part of my continuing interest in the development of corporate governance in ChinaI have been a member of the management committee for the Management School's "Lancaster Centre for Management in China" for the last 9 years.My most recent roles include those of Careers Advisor for the Lancaster Law School 2003-2010 and LLM Coordinator 2012-14.

Current Research Projects

I am currently involved in a number of research projects in my areas of general interest.These include:

(a) Comparative minority shareholder protection in a corporate governance context and linked to this,

(b) The governance of small to medium sized enterprises and modeling the family firm in the context of legal vehicles for small to medium sized enterprises. A comparison of the corporate governance problems facing family controlled firms in various jurisdictions with particular emphasis on SMEs

(c) A comparative overview of the role of employees in corporate decision making and governance in the UK, China and several other jursidictions. Particular emphasis being focused on similar issues encountered in harmonization and legal transplantation.

(d) Working on a book exploring the law relating to nominee directors and director interlocks.

Additional Information

Research overview

Phil's areas of interest are Corporate Law, Corporate Governance and Equity and Trusts. He is particularly interested in aspects of culture and corporations, comparative and transplantation issues in corporate law and governance. The legal dimensions of modelling the life cycles of family firms and the governance aspects of small to medium sized enterprises.

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