Professor Karen Broadhurst

Professor Karen Broadhurst


University of Lancaster


Professor Karen Broadhurst

My research interests are in child and family justice. I have a particular interest in the formal operation of the family courts and related institutions, their impact on family life, as well as alternative problem solving approaches to justice.

Recent work has focused on women in the family courts, the intersection of social science and legal knowledge in family court decision-making as well as methods of therapeutic jurisprudence.

I am currently Co-Director of the Centre for Child and Family Justice Research which is an interdisciplinary research centre working in close collaboration with policy and practice partners. The Centre is home to researchers, national and international doctoral students and visitors.

I am also Society Lead for the Data Science Institute at the University. Society colleagues undertake data intensive research to tackle long-standing and new social problems.

I am Principal Investigator and Co-Director for a new £2.2 million Nuffield funded project which aims to accelerate intelligence about how the family justice is working using administrative data. This is part of the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory initiative.


I am also serving as advisor to HMCTS for the evaluation of family court reform. I Chair the advisory board of the PAUSE project. I sit on the Editorial Board of Family Court Review led by the international Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.

With colleagues at UCL, the Centre for Child and Family Justice Research is pursuing novel linkages of family court and health data to understand the health needs of women in public law proceedings

With colleagues at UEA, the Centre is examining the pattern of fathers appearances in public law proceedings, the wellbeing of fathers and family relationships

With colleagues in Australia and the US, I am collaborating in the SIB (State Intervention with Babies) project funded by the Australian Research Council.

With Peking University and supported by a British Academy Grant I am examining the development of child protection in China.

Courses this tutor is involved in