Professor Thom Brooks

Professor Thom Brooks

Durham Law School
Durham University

Thom Brooks is an award-winning author, columnist, policy advisor and public speaker. He appears frequently on television, radio and in print media discussing immigration & citizenship, Brexit ‘Brexpert’ and “the man behind Remain and Leave” vote, British politics, punishment & sentencing, US politics and other topics as a highly sought after commentator and expert. His general research interests are in ethics, law and public policy. Brooks is an Academic Bencher of the Honourable Society of Inner Temple and the 122nd President of the Society of Legal Scholars, the oldest and largest learned society for academic lawyers. After Keir Starmer became Leader of the UK Labour Party, Brooks took his place on the Fabian Society’s Executive Committee. Brooks is founding Director of the Labour Academic Network, an innovative, global independent group of leading academics supporting Labour’s policy development.

Thom Brooks is the UK’s only Professor of Law and Government and the Dean at Durham Law School and an Associate Member in Department of Philosophy and Professor in School of Government and International Affairs at Durham University. He has held visiting appointments at (1) the University of Chicago Law School, (2) Columbia University’s Columbia Law School, (3) Harvard University’s Harvard Law School, (4) LUISS Guido Carli’s Law School in Rome, (5) New York University’s Center for Bioethics, (6) the University of Nice Law School, (7) the University of Oxford (St John’s College), (8) the University of Pennsylvania Law School, (9) University of St Andrews, (10) Uppsala University and (11) Yale Law School at Yale University. He’s on the advisory board of Universidade Nova de Lisboa – NOVA School of Law. Brooks taught previously at Newcastle University.

Brooks is the top academic broadcaster worldwide in Globelynx (Press Association) Network with 2,000+ media appearances on BBC One, BBC Two (‘Newsnight’), BBC News, BBC World Service, CNN, ITV, Channel 5, Sky News, Al Jazeera, ABC News 24, Deutsche Welle, Euronews, France 24, WTNH (ABC), BBC Radio 4 (with Andrew Marr), BBC 5 Live, The Economist, Money Week and all major UK newspapers and many others including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post. He has co-hosted programmes on immigration as well as British and American politics, and been a Brexpert for Sky News. Brooks writes columns for Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, The Independent, The Times, Sunday Express, The Atlantic, Fabian Review, Huffington Post, LabourList, New Statesman, Northern Echo and others. He has been interviewed by Adam Boulton, Colin Brazier, Kay Burley, Rosemary Church, Anna Jones, Eddie Mair, Andrew Marr, Maxine Mawhinney, Dermot Murnaghan, Ann Nyberg, Beverley O’Connor, Francois Pickard, John Simpson, Jeremy Thompson, Nick Watt and Andrew Wilson among others – and debated George Galloway and Toby Young live on television. Brooks has long championed academics becoming publicly engaged.

As the inaugural Dean of Durham Law School at Durham University, he is leading the biggest growth in the School’s 50 year history increasing academic staff from 42 to 75+ over the next few years – building new critical mass in key areas, improving our research capacities, expanding into new areas like Chinese law launching the ground-breaking Centre for Chinese Law and Policy already one of the largest in Europe starting the first ever Chinese law summer school in the UK. The Times noted the new programme at Durham will offer “great career prospects” above and beyond other British law schools in a special feature. The Law School’s growth will further reduce our staff-student ratio and retaining Durham’s small group tutorials of 8 students and seminar teaching at the heart of our enriching student experience. Brooks introduced the first on-site teaching for the New York and California state bar exams in partnership with BARBRI. He has become known for driving the global diversity of programmes to reflect the global diversity of today’s students and academic to boost research and employability championing global legal education.

Durham Law ranked 3rd in the UK in the most recent Research Excellence Framework. Durham also ranks in top three best law schools for law student employability: more Durham graduates get jobs in the City and London than any London law school. In 2017, Durham Law School achieved its best ever results reaching 40th in QS World Rankings and 93% overall satisfaction in the National Student Survey. These achievements were recognised by the House of Commons in Early Day Motion 875 in Parliament. Durham University is the third oldest university in England and situated in a UNESCO World Heritage Site – Durham Castle is one of the university’s colleges. Brooks has stood in for the Vice-Chancellor representing Durham University abroad and serves on several senior working groups and committees covering workload models, an effectiveness review of academic boards of studies, a review into academic administrative workload and several senior appointment panels. Brooks chairs a University-wide working group on non-staff budget allocations. He sits on the BARBRI SQE Advisory Board where he advises on addressing changes in the regulatory framework for qualifying solicitors. He features in Hogan Lovells’ Graduate Recruitment Brochure for 2018 and 2019. He currently serves on the working group that will appoint Durham University’s next Vice-Chancellor and Warden. Brooks previously served on the working group appointing the University’s Chair of Council.