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Dr Charlotte O'Brien
BA (Cantab), LLM (Leeds), PhD (Liverpool), PGCAP (York)
I joined York Law School in 2009.
From 2006-9, I completed a PhD at the University of Liverpool through an individual AHRC studentship and took part in two research projects on retirement migration funded by the Spanish Ministry for Employment & Social Affairs and Age Concern. These looked at the access to welfare services for post-retirement EU migrants. Prior to the PhD, I completed the LLM in Law at the University of Leeds, where I undertook research assistance work on the EU constitutional treaty. Following my Social & Political Sciences degree I trained as a volunteer Citizens Advice Bureau adviser, and have since continued case work and supervision.
PhD supervision: I welcome applications from prospective research students in these and related areas; please get in touch if you would like to discuss a proposal.
The EU rights project
I have been awarded an ESRC future research leaders grant to design and manage a project over 2.5 years to ask how easy it is to use the rights granted by EU law in the UK, to better develop a theory of EU citizenship and social and administrative justice in EU law. In collaboration with Ripon Citizens Advice Bureau, am setting up a specialist advice and advocacy service on EU welfare claims. While advising and representing clients, I will conduct in parallel a study of administrative obstacles their claims face. This 'advice led ethnography' is an innovative new methodology and a new approach to EU law. It combines socio-legal studies with theoretical, philosophical and historical work on EU social law.
Please see https://sites.google.com/a/york.ac.uk/eurightsproject/ for more information and to follow the progress of the project.
The integration of persons with disabilities: Charter of Fundamental Rights commentary
I have been invited to contribute to a new, key reference text on the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, published by Hart Publishing and edited by Steve Peers, Tamara Hervey, Jeff Kenner and Angela Ward. The text devotes a chapter to each article in the Charter, offering a critical analysis by a relevant expert. I have contributed the chapter on Article 26 on the integration of persons with disabilities. See http://www.hartpub.co.uk/books/details.asp?isbn=9781849463089
The relationship between UK and EU welfare paradigms
I have been invited to contribute a chapter to a forthcoming edited collection entitled ‘The European Union’s economic and social model in the global crisis: interdisciplinary perspectives’, published by Ashgate and edited by Professor Dagmar Schiek (University of Leeds). My chapter, 'From safety nets and carrots to trampolines and sticks: the national uses of the EU as both menace and model to help neoliberalise welfare policy', examines ideological convergence around neo-liberal approaches to welfare, and the part played by invocations of the EU in on-going UK welfare reform debates. The collection has been reviewed as a 'must read': see http://www.ashgate.com/isbn/9781409457312
C. O'Brien 'The pillory, the precipice and the slippery slope: the profound effects of the UK’s legal reform programme targeting EU migrants' (2015) 37(1) Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law 111-136.
I am the EU module coordinator and with responsibility for aspects of both the Clinic module and the Immigration Law module.