Biography

Chelsea is a BCL candidate supported by a scholarship from Jesus College, reading for the papers Comparative Human Rights, Comparative Equality Law, Law in Society, and Families & the State: Children. She will be commencing the DPhil in Law from October, focussing on the role of human rights law in addressing domestic abuse, under the supervision of Professors Shazia Choudhry and Jonathan Herring.

Prior to studying at Oxford Chelsea completed undergraduate degrees in Law and International Business, alongside graduate studies in Politics and International Relations; International Economics and Finance; French and Latin language; Mathematics; and English Literature. Chelsea has two University Medals and a Chancellor's Medal, and received the Una Prentice Award for the highest achieving graduating law student in the state of Queensland. She was the youngest graduate of her university, aged seventeen. Chelsea also holds a Graduate Diploma in Education (Secondary), and spent three years teaching English, French, Latin and Philosophy at a boarding school in Australia, where she also coordinated Gifted & Talented programmes.

Chelsea's research interests centre on issues of complex social policy, particularly dealing with vulnerable parties who face challenges advocating on their own behalf. Her undergraduate thesis, published in the Journal of Law & Medicine, investigated how dynamic socio-political conditions interact with attempts to legalise voluntary euthanasia in Australia, drawing on a comparative study of Dutch and Belgian law reform experiences. More recently, she was the lead researcher for a report for Community Legal Centres NSW, compiled on behalf of the University of Sydney Policy Reform Project, exploring the implications of reduced access to advocacy for parents involved in child protection cases.

Chelsea is a Research Officer and member of the Executive Committee of the Oxford Pro Bono Publico and a Convenor of the Feminist Jurisprudence Discussion Group in the Faculty of Law. She is also Poetry Editor for the Oxford Public Philosophy journal, and has had works of prose and poetry published in The Turl magazine. Chelsea is passionate about improving access to justice and considering how intersectional marginalisation affects the availability and effectiveness of legal remedies. She has previously served as a Youth Ambassador for Oxfam Australia, a member of the Australian delegation to the Harvard Model United Nations Conference, and a Senior Judge for The Queen's Commonwealth Essay Competition. Chelsea is an Associate Fellow of the Royal Commonwealth Society.

Publications

Recent additions

  • C Wallis, S Gillfeather-Spetere, V Mahapatra and C Sohoni, The Role of Legal and Non-legal Parent Advocates in the NSW Child Protection System (Report for Community Legal Centres NSW on behalf of the University of Sydney Policy Reform Project 2020)
  • C Wallis, 'A Phronetic Inquiry into the Australian Euthanasia Experience: Challenging Paternalistic Medical Culture and Unrepresentative Health Policy' (2018) 25 Journal of Law and Medicine 837
    Australia’s intermittent attempts to legalise euthanasia are typically fraught with brief, polarised, and often sensationalised, public debate. Yet beyond the sensitive arguments in favour and in opposition of reform, the practical antecedents of change that may determine Australia’s genuine aptitude to enact reforms have been largely neglected. Phronetic legal inquiry thus offers insights into the euthanasia law reform experience, using Australian and international case comparisons to examine covert power dynamics, cultural discourses, and social and institutional structures that affect the practices of the legislature. On this basis, it is argued that Australia’s medical profession, and particularly its dominant providers of palliative care, are hampered by an entrenched culture of medicalisation and paternalism, within which patient autonomy provides only a veneer of self-determination.This can be strikingly contrasted with the Dutch approach of patient-centred care, which seeks to produce collaborative, respectful dialogue between physician and patient and to integrate the principles of autonomy and bene cence. Furthermore, these contrasting medical cultures represent issues in the broader policymaking context, as Australia’s health policy remains unduly subject to the pressure of unrepresentative yet in uential conservative interest groups, most prominently including the Australian Medical Association. This pressure serves to suppress public opinion on the issue of euthanasia in a parliamentary climate that remains sti ed by bipartisan alliances and political inertia. It is therefore argued that Australia’s prospects for successful voluntary euthanasia law reform rest on the dual pillars of developing a more patient-centred medical culture and challenging the prevailing paternalistic approach to health policymaking in Australia’s currently unrepresentative political landscape.
    ISBN: 1320-159X

Report (1)

C Wallis, S Gillfeather-Spetere, V Mahapatra and C Sohoni, The Role of Legal and Non-legal Parent Advocates in the NSW Child Protection System (Report for Community Legal Centres NSW on behalf of the University of Sydney Policy Reform Project 2020)

Journal Article (1)

C Wallis, 'A Phronetic Inquiry into the Australian Euthanasia Experience: Challenging Paternalistic Medical Culture and Unrepresentative Health Policy' (2018) 25 Journal of Law and Medicine 837
Australia’s intermittent attempts to legalise euthanasia are typically fraught with brief, polarised, and often sensationalised, public debate. Yet beyond the sensitive arguments in favour and in opposition of reform, the practical antecedents of change that may determine Australia’s genuine aptitude to enact reforms have been largely neglected. Phronetic legal inquiry thus offers insights into the euthanasia law reform experience, using Australian and international case comparisons to examine covert power dynamics, cultural discourses, and social and institutional structures that affect the practices of the legislature. On this basis, it is argued that Australia’s medical profession, and particularly its dominant providers of palliative care, are hampered by an entrenched culture of medicalisation and paternalism, within which patient autonomy provides only a veneer of self-determination.This can be strikingly contrasted with the Dutch approach of patient-centred care, which seeks to produce collaborative, respectful dialogue between physician and patient and to integrate the principles of autonomy and bene cence. Furthermore, these contrasting medical cultures represent issues in the broader policymaking context, as Australia’s health policy remains unduly subject to the pressure of unrepresentative yet in uential conservative interest groups, most prominently including the Australian Medical Association. This pressure serves to suppress public opinion on the issue of euthanasia in a parliamentary climate that remains sti ed by bipartisan alliances and political inertia. It is therefore argued that Australia’s prospects for successful voluntary euthanasia law reform rest on the dual pillars of developing a more patient-centred medical culture and challenging the prevailing paternalistic approach to health policymaking in Australia’s currently unrepresentative political landscape.
ISBN: 1320-159X

Research Interests

Feminist legal theory; Family law; Human Rights; Medical Law and Ethics; Children's Rights; Gender and the law; Access to Justice

Research projects