Research Profile

  • Ed is a Senior Lecturer in Law. His research is focused on criminal justice and procedure and he specialises in the disclosure of evidence in criminal proceedings, the role of the defence lawyer and suspects’ rights. In 2018, Ed completed his PhD entitled ‘The Defence Lawyer in the Modern Era’. The thesis was based on empirical research that examined if the role of the defence lawyer ought to be re-conceived from that of a zealous advocate. Furthermore, the thesis examined the impact of the changing adversarial landscape for both defendants and the wider criminal justice process.

    Ed is an external examiner for Keele University and is the editor of the Routledge series Contemporary Issues in Criminal Justice and Procedure (Routledge Contemporary Issues in Criminal Justice and Procedure – Book Series – Routledge & CRC Press).

    Conference presentations

    Below are a list of Ed’s conference presentations:

    • Law and Society’s Annual Conference, with J. Buting, presenting at Crisis in Criminal Justice: From Adversarialism to Proceduralisation – Threats to fair trial rights, Law and Society Annual Meeting, Chicago, May 2021
    • Online Courts and the (un)fairness of proceedings in England and Wales, presented at Legal Policy Research Center’s 5th Forum of Kazakhstan Defence Lawyers, December 2020
    • The Dwindling Fair Trial: Silence, Pre-trial Disclosure and Self-Incrimination, presented at the 10th International Crime and Punishment Conference, Istanbul, November 2020.
    • ‘The Evolution of Disclosure Law’ at The Judicial College’s Long and Complex Trial Workshop, Warwick, Feb 2020
    • ‘The rise of Managerialism and the dilution of the adversarial defence law’, at the Law and Society annual conference, Washington D.C., May 2019.
    • ‘Pre-trial disclosure: Lessons to be learned from England and Wales’, keynote address at Annual Legal Policy Research Centre Consultation on Criminal Justice, Astana, Kazakhstan, December 2018.
    • ‘The defence lawyer and the evolving criminal trial’, paper presented at the Society for Legal Scholars Annual Conference, Bristol University, April 2018.
    • ‘The Rise of Managerialism: Implications for Defence Rights’ – Paper accepted at the Society for Legal Scholars Annual Conference, Oxford University, September 2016.
    • ‘The Defence Lawyer and the Criminal Procedure Rules’ paper accepted at the annual conference of the Socio-Legal Scholars Association, Lancaster University, April 2016.
    • ‘The Defence Lawyer in the Modern Era’, Poster presented at the Society for Legal Scholars Annual Conference, York University, September 2015.
    • ‘The Rise of the Interventionist Judge: From Proof to Truth’ paper presented at the Society for Legal Scholars Annual Conference, Nottingham University, September 2014.
  • Criminal Justice, Criminal Procedure, Criminal Law

  • Research

    Criminal justice, adversarialism, fair trial rights, disclosure.

    PhD Supervision Interests

    Ed is interested in supervising students who wish to study in the following areas:

    • Criminal Justice and Procedure
    • Defence rights 
    • Access to justice 
    Research grants

    Ed has been awarded the following research grants.

    • 2021 – Awarded £1,125 – Society of Legal Scholars Research Activities Fund – Funding was awarded to carry out an empirical study on the impact of Pre-Charge Engagement.
    • 2019 – Awarded £1,500 – Socio Legal Studies Association Seminar Series – A One day seminar entitle ‘Disclosure: A Perennial Problem?’ (The event be hosted at UWE in July 2019).
    • E. Johnston and H. Sosabowski, (2021) Released Under Investigation: High Time to Bail Out, The Journal of Criminal Law. February 2022. doi:10.1177/00220183221078935
    • E. Johnston, The Role of the Defence Lawyer (June 2021, Lexington)
    • E. Johnston and T. Smith, (2020) The Law of Disclosure: A Perennial Problem in Criminal Justice (- Routledge)
    • E. Johnston and T. Smith, Criminal Procedure and Punishment (2nd Edition) (2020 – Hall and Stott,)
    • E. Johnston, R. Erbas and D. Jasinski, (2020) A Comparative Analysis of Pre-Trial Procedure in Europe: The Search for an Ideal Model (Istanbul University Press,)
    • Johnston Ed, Smith Tom, ‘Marketisation and Competition in Criminal Legal Aid: Implications for access to justice’, in Albertson K, Corcoran M, Phillips J (eds), Marketisation and Criminal Justice  2020, Policy Press)
    • Johnston, Ed (2019) The Adversarial Defence Lawyer: Myths, disclosure and efficiency: A contemporary analysis of the role in the era of the CrimPR’ International Journal of Evidence and Proof, 24(1) 35-58.
    • Johnston, Ed. (2019) Obstacles to Fairness in Criminal Proceedings: Individual Rights and Institutional Forms Criminal Law Review, 2019 – In press.
    • Johnston, Ed and Smith Tom, (2018) Criminal Procedure and Punishment, Hall and Stott Publishing
    • Johnston, Ed. (2018) Defendant participation in the criminal process book review. Criminal Law Review, 2018 (5). pp. 418-421.
    • Johnston, Ed (2017) Howzat?!: In limbo: Ben Stokes and the use of released under investigation. Criminal Law and Justice Weekly, 181.
    • Johnston, Ed and Smith, T. (2017) The digital revolution: Body worn cameras and ‘street’ interviews. Criminal Law and Justice Weekly, 181. pp. 769-771.
    • Johnston, Ed (2017) (The lack of) disclosure and the constant drive for efficiency. Criminal Law and Justice Weekly, 181.
    • Johnston, E. M, and Smith, T. (2017) ‘The Early Guilty Plea Scheme and the Rising Wave of Managerialism’, Criminal Law and Justice Weekly, 181(13) pp.210-212.
    • Johnston, E. M. (2017), ‘The Prison System is in Crisis: Let’s not look to Hollywood for the answer’,  Criminal Law and Justice Weekly, 181(9) pp.144-145.
    • Johnston, E. M. (2016), ‘All Rise for the Interventionist: The Judiciary in the 21st Century’, Journal of Criminal Law, 80(3) pp.201-213.
    • Johnston, E.M. and Wishart, H. (2016) (Eds) ‘Special Edition: Criminal Law and Neuroscience: The Path Forward’ The European Journal of Current Legal Studies, 22(2).
    • Johnston, E.M, (2016) Brain Scanning and Lie Detectors: The Implications for Fundamental Defence Rights’ The European Journal of Current Legal Studies, 22(2).
    • Johnston, E. M. (2015), The Innocent Cannot Afford to Plead Not Guilty: The Impact of the Criminal Court Charge, Criminal Law and Justice Weekly, Vol 179, September 12th 2015 at 670.
    • Johnston, E. M. and Jasinski, D. (2013), ‘Neuroscientific Evidence: A Criminal Justice Dream or an Adversarial Nightmare?’ International Journal of Liability and Scientific Enquiry, Vol. 6(4) at 193.