Dr Elizabeth Curran

Senior Lecturer
BA, LLB (Monash): Masters in Law (University of Melbourne); RSA Cert (Oxon); Grad Dip. Sec. Education (ACU) Doctorate in Juridical Science (La Trobe University), Member, Australiasian Society of Evaluators, Member, Vic Restorative Justice Assoc.
0404 106 614
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Biography

Melbourne based, Dr Liz Curran’s research focuses on access to justice; effective legal practice; domestic human rights of people in disadvantage; building legal and advocacy capacity of community; impact and effectiveness of service delivery. She has published research reports (2007, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2015) on outcomes, quality and effectiveness and on a ‘Strategic Approaches to Problem Solving’ (March 2013). Between 2014 and 2017 Liz is commissioned to conduct research evaluations of Health Justice Partnerships (HJP). She evaluated a family violence prevention program in May 2015 which informed the Royal Commission into Family Violence. Liz is a regular media commentator and has participated in government and statutory advisory bodies.Liz has been cited heavily by the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Access to Justice and the Allen Review of legal services.

Her recent research aims to better reach clients in most need of legal help, who currently have no access, through multi-disciplinary practice. Liz’s research on effective legal and community service practice, impact and positive client outcomes examining what improves the social determinants of health has led to considerable interest domestically and overseas. Liz is advising the Legal Services Board Victoria (LSB) on evaluation to support and guide eight LSB funded services. Her research uses empirical study to find what works and why and gives a voice to people who are often invisible.

Appointments

  • Associate Director, ANU Centre of the Profession, Education & Regulation in Law
  • Senior Research Fellow, Nottingham Trent University (2017- 2022)
  • Appointed February 2017 as 'expert adviser' to the Law Council of Australia's 'Justice Project'. The Law Council of Australia is undertaking a comprehensive national review into the impediments to justice in Australia, focussing on those facing significant social and economic disadvantage in community. The work will culminate in a Final Report at the end of November 2017 following a literature review and consultation process.
  • Adaptive Leadership Training program for the Federation of Community Legal Centres to assist them in the recruitment and retention and fostering of leadership skills in lawyers in community legal centres which service people experiencing disadvantage in the community.
  • Immediate past Co-Convener and current member, Federation of Community Legal Centre’s (Victoria) Human Rights Working Group.
  • Editorial Committee of the 'Legal Practive Manual Victoria'
  • ANU College of Law's Law Reform and Social Justice Advisory.

Significant research publications

Scholarly Academic Refereed:

  • Enabling Marginalised Voices to Be Heard: The Challenge to LawReform Bodies’, New Directions for Law in Australia:Essays in Contemporary Law Reform, edited by Ron Levy, Molly O’Brien,Simon Rice, Pauline Ridge and Margaret Thornton, published 2017by ANU Press, The Australian National University, Canberra, Australia, Chapter 48, 517 -  527. dx.doi.org/10.22459/NDLA.09.2017.48
  • ‘Multi-disciplinary Practice Health Justice Partnerships–Working ethically to ensure reach to the most in need’, 26 Nottingham Law Journal (2017) 11 -36.
  • ‘Lawyer Secondary Consultations: improving access to justice and human rights: reaching clients otherwise excluded through professional support in a multi-disciplinary practice’ 8(1) Journal of Social Inclusion (2017) https://josi.journals.griffith.edu.au/index.php/inclusion/article/view/817
  •  ‘Reflecting on community development practice: Working with communities for effective change by enabling access to justice’ with P Taylor Barnett and A Vernon, 19 (1) Flinders Law Journal, (July, 2017).
  • 'Measuring Legal Services: A Practical methodology for measuring quality and outcomes of legal assistance services' Vol 32, 1 University of Tasmania Law Review, (2013)  70-95.
  • ‘Measuring the impact, quality and effectiveness of legal assistance services in a climate of reduced funding and increased government expectations: The Australian experience’ (with Andrew Crockett) Vol 22, No 3 (2016), European Journal of Current Legal Issues http://webjcli.org/article/view/468 (pages 27)

  • ‘Integrating Two Measures of Quality Practice into Clinical and Practical Legal Education Assessment:  Good client interviewing and effective community legal education’, International Journal of Clinical Legal Education 21(1) 2014 with Tony Foley.
  • ‘Legal Review: Not all in the Statistics’ Law Institute Journal, July 2013, 36 – 39.
  • ‘Delivery of Advice to Vulnerable and Marginalised Groups: The Need for Innovative Approaches’ (with Alexy Buck, Legal Services Research Centre, London), Public Space, The Journal of Law and Social Justice, 2009, Vol 3 (0n-line Journal http://epress.lib.uts.edu.au/journals/index.php(publicspace/article/view/1232/1239.

  • ‘Access to Justice: A new approach using human rights standards’ (with M Noone) International Journal of the Legal Profession, 2008, Vol 15 (3) pp 195-229.

  • ‘Human Rights: making them relevant to the vulnerable and marginalised in Australia,’ June 2008, Vol 33 (2), Alternative Law Journal, pp 70 -75.

  • ‘Relieving Some of the Legal Burdens on Clients: legal Aid services working alongside Psychologists and other health and social service professionals’, Australian Community Psychologist, August 2008, Vol 20 (1), pp 47-56.

  • The Challenge of Defining Legal Need’, Journal of Law and Social Policy, 2007, Vol 21 Spring, Ontario Canada, pp63 -89.

  • ‘Pushing the boundaries or preserving the status quo? Designing Clinical Programs to Teach Law Students a Deep Understanding of Ethical Practice’, (with J Dickson & M Noone) International Journal of Clinical Legal Education, UK, December 2005, pp 104-122.

Reports

Read selected publications in the ANU Digital Collection

Recent news

07
Nov
2017
The Constitutional
A new podcast from the ANU College of Law captures conversations about law in a way that is utterly charming and reminds listeners that lawyers are people too.
24
May
2017
Lady liberty statue
ANU Law researcher Liz Curran is creating opportunities for lawyers to work in medical clinics to help patients with health problems that are linked to their legal issues.
28
Jan
2017
Youths protesting on the roof of the Melbourne Youth Justice Centre in Parkville on March 7, 2016. Photo: Jesse MarlowYouths protesting on the roof of the Melbourne Youth Justice Centre in Parkville on March 7, 2016. Photo: Jesse Marlow
Liz Curran writes the lead letter in The Age on yet another review by the Victorian government into the youth justice system.
28
Aug
2015
Elizabeth Curran
Lawyers, health workers and counsellors are collaborating to improve access to the law for disadvantaged communities, according to an ANU research paper.

In the Media

2
Jul
2015
Elizabeth Curran writes in The Law Institute Journal (Victoria)
29
Jun
2015
Elizabeth Curran speaks to Canberra Times

Please note, only a small selection of recent publications and activities are listed below.

Read selected publications in the ANU Digital Collection

Research biography

Melbourne based, Dr Liz Curran’s research focusses on access to justice; the rule of law; effective legal practice, domestic human rights of people in disadvantage; building legal and advocacy capacity of community; impact and effectiveness of service delivery. She has published research reports (2007, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2015) on outcomes, quality and effectiveness and on a ‘Strategic Approaches to Problem Solving’ (March 2013).

Between 2014 and 2017 Liz is commissioned to conduct research evaluations of Health Justice Partnerships (HJP). She evaluated a family violence prevention program in May 2015 which informed the Royal Commission into Family Violence. Liz is a regular media commentator and has participated in government and statutory advisory bodies.

Her recent research on HJP’s aims to better reach clients in most need of legal help, who currently have no access, through multi-disciplinary practice. Liz’s research on effective legal and community service practice, impact and positive client outcomes examining what improves the social determinants of health has led to considerable interest domestically and overseas. Liz is advising the Legal Services Board Victoria (LSB) on evaluation to support and guide eight LSB funded services. Her research uses empirical study to find what works and why and gives a voice to people who are often invisible.

SJD supervision

I am willing to supervise

MPhil supervision

I am willing to supervise

LLM Masters thesis supervision

Evaluation Fellow, Supervision, Masters Thesis in Evaluation, Student of the University of Melbourne (Letter appointing Dr Curran February 2017)

Honours thesis supervision

I am willing to supervise

Internship supervision

I am willing to supervise

Philosophy & approach

  • Practice can inform theory and education and vice versa.
  • Ethical and Legal Professional awareness leads to better lawyers in training and good legal practioners.
  • Raising students awareness of how the law works in reality and how it impacts upon people and society and the role they play as legal practitionersin ensuring the intergrity of the legal system and its administration.

Past courses

  • Convener & Teacher of the ‘Becoming a Practitioner’ Week long face-to face Intensive courses in the Masters in Legal Practice (MLP) specifically in the Graduate Diploma of Legal Education component , ANU
  • Convener &Teacher in the ‘Consumer Law in Practice’- Elective, ANU
  • Teaching in the ‘Professionalism in Practice’ (18 weeks) subject 'Giving Voice to Values' in ANU Legal Workshop
  • Teacher Ethics and Legal Professionalism in the Professional Practice Core in ANU Legal Workshop
  • ‘Lawyers, Justice and Ethics’, Undergraduate Law Degree, 2011
  • Clinical Legal Education Supervising Solicitor 2001- 2008, Latrobe University

2017

Liz currently convenes and teaches in the ANU School of Legal Practice as follows:

  • a number of the interstate intensive ‘Becoming a Practitioner’ (BAP) courses most recently in late December 2016 (Tasmania) January and July 2017 (Melbourne).
  • ‘Giving Voice to Values’, Advanced Skills and Portfolio in the Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice (GDLP) capstone subject, ‘Ready for Practice’ x 6 annualy.
  • GDLP Mentor in the Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice (GDLP) x 4 annually,

She has been involved in course and curriculum design which have incorporated her empirical research that examines what makes a good and effective practitioner.

How my works connects with public policy

Law Reform leads to better and informed policy. The real impact of the law on human beings can be seen through legal practice and used to inform better policy.

Research can also deliver empirical information about how the system works in practice and what works well and why and what does not work so well and why.

Recent research on the effectiveness and quality legal services and what works well with youth offenders to prevent the cycle of crime are examples.

'Expert Advisor', Law Council of Australia's 'Justice Project' (February 2017 - December 2017)

This work can be used to provide a voice for those who otherwise would not have one and to make an array of well targetted submissions to Parliament and Statutory and Regulatory bodies.

Liz has been referred to and cited heavily with some recommendations adopted in recent reports on access to justice and human rights including but not limited to:

The Final Report of the Government Review of the Human Rights Charter in Victoria (September 2015 -17 Times). 

https://myviews.justice.vic.gov.au/2015-review-of-the-charter-of-human-rights

The Productivity Commission Full Final Report (Vol 1 & 2) on Access to Justice Arrangements (September 2014 - at least 30 times)

http://www.pc.gov.au/inquiries/completed/access-justice/report

The Allen Consulting Review for the Commonwealth Attorney Ceneral's Department (July 2014 - at least seven times in each of the draft, interim and final reports)

http://www.acilallen.com.au/projects/23/justice/126/review-of-the-nation...

ANU Report Winter 2017 Volume 48 Number 2 http://reporter.anu.edu.au/how-lawyers-improve-health-care

Updated:  10 August 2015/Responsible Officer:  College General Manager, ANU College of Law/Page Contact:  Law Marketing Team