Gabrielle Watson

Shaw Foundation Fellow in Law

Other affiliations

Faculty of Law


I am the Shaw Foundation Fellow in Law at Lincoln College, Oxford. I was formerly a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in the Faculty of Law and Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Law at Christ Church, Oxford. I hold an LLB (First Class) from the University of Edinburgh and MSc (Distinction), MA (Honorary), and DPhil degrees from the University of Oxford.

I am the author of the award-winning Respect and Criminal Justice, published by Oxford University Press in 2020. The book offers the first sustained analysis of ‘respect’ in criminal justice in England and Wales, where the value is elusive but of central and enduring significance. I am currently writing a second book entitled Just Words? Ethics and the Language of Criminal Justice, and a series of peer-reviewed journal articles on topics in Criminal Law, Sentencing and Criminal Justice, and the Philosophy of Punishment.

My work has been generously funded by major grants from the Leverhulme Trust, the Economic and Social Research Council, and the John Fell OUP Research Fund. I have given invited talks to legal and interdisciplinary audiences, including at the Assize Seminar in Cutting-Edge Criminal Law: a unique collaboration between the University of Oxford, University of Cambridge, University College London, and the Criminal Bar Association. I have held Visiting Fellowships in Law at the Cambridge Centre for Criminal Justice (2019, 2021) and at Downing College, Cambridge (2021). 

I provide background briefings to the media as part of the University of Oxford's Find an Expert scheme and, in 2022, I was appointed Research Advisor to the Sentencing Academy, a London-based institute dedicated to developing expert and public understanding of sentencing in England and Wales.