Professor David Schiff, LLB (Hons)
Emeritus Professor of Law
Email: email@example.comRoom Number: Mile End
David Schiff joined Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) in September 2006 as a Professor in Law, having previously held the position of Reader in Law at the LSE. He was conferred the title of Emeritus Professor of Law from 1 September 2015.
He has written extensively with Richard Nobles since 1990 on criminal appeals and miscarriages of justice. Together they obtained an Economic and Social Research Council Research Award in 1991/92 to investigate the role of the Court of Appeal in remedying miscarriages of justice involving the re-assessment of expert evidence. The research led to a submission to the Royal Commission on Criminal Justice and, apart from many other publications, their book Understanding Miscarriages of Justice: Law, the Media and the Inevitability of Crisis (OUP, 2000). More recently their collaboration has involved numerous publications and seminar papers on diverse topics applying autopoietic systems theory to law, including two books for Hart Publishing: A Sociology of Jurisprudence (2006), and Observing Law through Systems Theory (2013). He was one of the editors of, and with Richard Nobles wrote the introduction to the English translation of Niklas Luhmann’s major work on law, Law as a Social System (OUP, 2004).
As a long serving member of the LSE, Professor Schiff wrote the chapter on law, ‘Freedom according to Law’, in the LSE book Freedom (edited by Eileen Barker), which was published as part of the LSE’s centenary celebrations in 1995. In the past he has been involved in the media, having appeared many times on radio and television, and having written a number of newspaper articles. His research interests currently involve the application of autopoietic systems theory to jurisprudence in general, and appeal systems within law, in particular. He continues to give occasional lectures and LLM seminars on jurisprudence.
Publications since 2000
- (with R. Nobles) ‘Taking the Evolution of Legal Doctrine Seriously’ (Review Article) 13(1) International Journal of Law in Context (2017), pp 96-120.
- (with R. Nobles), ‘Civil Disobedience and Constituent Power’ 11(4) International Journal of Law in Context (2015), pp 462 – 480
- (with R. Nobles), ‘Introduction’, in R. Nobles and D. Schiff (eds), Law, Society and Community: Socio- Legal Essays in Honour of Roger Cotterrell (Ashgate 2014)
- (with R. Nobles), ‘The Sociology of the Politics of Jurisprudence’, in R. Nobles and D. Schiff (eds), Law, Society and Community: Socio- Legal Essays in Honour of Roger Cotterrell (Ashgate 2014) ch13.
- (with R Nobles) 'Luhmann: Law, Justice, and Time', (2013) 26 International Journal for the Semiotics of Law, 1-16.
- (with R Nobles) 'Pulling Back from the Edge' - Review Article of Gunther Teubner, Constitutional Fragments: Societal Constitutionalism and Globalization, (2013) 76 Modern Law Review 620-638
- (with R Nobles) ‘Legal Pluralism: A Systems Theory Approach to Language, Translation, and Communication’ in M Freeman and F Smith (eds), Law and Language (OUP, Oxford, 2013), ch 7
- (with R Nobles) ‘Structural coupling between the systems of law and the media: the contrasting examples of criminal conviction and criminal appeal’ in A Febbrajo and G Harste (eds), Law and Intersystemic Communication (Ashgate, Aldershot, 2013), ch 13
- (with R Nobles) Observing Law through Systems Theory (Hart Publishing, Oxford, 2013)
- (with R Nobles) ‘Using Systems Theory to Study Legal Pluralism: What Could be Gained?’ 46 Law & Society Review (2012) 265-292
- (with R Nobles) ‘Why do judges talk the way they do?’ (2010) The Romanian Judges Forum Review 41-73
- (with R Nobles) 'Disobedience to Law - Debbie Purdy's Case' (2010) 73 Modern Law Review 295
- (with R Nobles) ‘Public confidence in criminal justice: the lessons from miscarriages of justice’ (2009) 48(5) Howard Journal of Criminal Justice 461
- (with R Nobles), 'After Ten Years: An Investment in Justice?' in M. Naughton (ed) The Criminal Cases Review Commission: Hope for the Innocent? (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), ch.11
- (with R Nobles) ‘Why do judges talk the way they do?’ (2009) 5.1 International Journal of Law in Context 25
- (with R Nobles), 'Jurisprudence as Self-Description: Natural Law and Positivism within the English Legal System' in G-P Calliess, A Fischer-Lescano, D Wielsch and P Zumbansen (eds) Soziologische Jurisprudenz: Festschrift fur Gunther Teubner (De Gruyter Recht, 2009), 359-374.
- (with R Nobles), ‘Criminal Cases Review Commission’ 268, ‘Miscarriages of Justice’ 796, ‘Systems Theory’ 1149, in P Cane and J Conaghan (eds) The New Oxford Companion to Law (OUP, 2008).
- (with R Nobles) ‘Absurd Asymmetry - a Comment on R v Cottrell and Fletcher and BM, KK and DP (Petitioners) v Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission’ (2008) 71 Modern Law Review 464
- (with R Nobles) Review of O Perez and G Teubner (eds), Paradoxes and Inconsistencies in the Law, (2007) 70 Modern Law Review 505
- (with R Nobles) 'The Emperor's New Clothes', Review Article of Ronald Dworkin, Justice in Robes, (2007) 70 Modern Law Review 139
- (with R Nobles) 'Theorising the Criminal Trial and Criminal Appeal: Finality, Truth and Rights' in A Duff, L Farmer, S Marshall and V Tadros (eds), The Trial on Trial, Volume 2 (Hart Publishing, Oxford, 2006), ch 14
- (with R Nobles) 'Communicating Moral Responsibility through Criminal Law', Review of V Tadros, Criminal Responsibility, (2006) 26 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 207
- (with R Nobles) A Sociology of Jurisprudence (Hart Publishing, Oxford, 2006)
- (with R Nobles) 'A Sociology of Jurisprudence' in M Freeman (ed), Law and Sociology (OUP, Oxford, 2006) ch 3
- (with R Nobles) 'Guilt and Innocence in the Criminal Justice System: A Comment on R (Mullen) v Secretary of State for the Home Department ' (2006) 69 The Modern Law Review 80
- (with R Nobles) 'A reply to Graham Zellick' Criminal Law Review  951
- (with R Nobles) 'Misleading Statistics within Criminal Trials' (2005) 2 Significance 17
- (with R Nobles) 'The Criminal Cases Review Commission: Establishing a Workable Relationship with the Court of Appeal'  Criminal Law Review 173
- (with R Nobles) 'A Story of Miscarriage: Law in the Media' (2004) 31 Journal of Law and Society 221
- (with R Nobles) 'Introduction' to the English translation of N Luhmann, Law as a Social System (edited by F Kastner, R Nobles, D Schiff and R Ziegert) (OUP, Oxford, 2004)
- (with J Penner and R Nobles (eds)), Introduction to Jurisprudence and Legal Theory: Commentary and Materials (Butterworths, London, 2002, now published by OUP)
- (with R Nobles) 'The Right to Appeal and Workable Systems of Justice' (2002) 65 Modern Law Review 676
- (with R Nobles) 'Criminal Justice: Autopoietic Insights' in Law's New Boundaries: The Consequences of Legal Autopoiesis (eds) J Pribán and D.Nelken (Ashgate, Dartmouth, 2001) ch 9
- (with R Nobles) 'Due process and Dirty Harry Dilemmas: Criminal Appeals and the Human Rights Act' (2001) 64 Modern Law Review 911
- (with R Nobles) 'The Criminal Cases Review Commission: Reporting Success?' (2001) 64 Modern Law Review 64, 280
- (with R Nobles) Understanding Miscarriages of Justice: Law, the Media, and the Inevitability of Crisis (OUP, Oxford, 2000)
- Member of the Criminal Justice Centre (CJC)
- Member of the Centre for Law and Society in a Global Context (CLSGC)
- Event Recap: 'Law, Society and Community: Socio-Legal Essays in honour of Roger Cotterrell' Book Launch
9 October 2014
- Professor David Schiff and Professor Richard Nobles to chair sessions at the Law and Society Association Conference in Boston 30 May - 2 June
29 May 2013
- Professor Nobles and Professor Schiff's new book 'Observing Law through Systems Theory' is published
4 January 2013