Joanne Beswick

Senior Lecturer

School of Justice, Security and Sustainability

I first joined Staffordshire University in 1998 as a Research Associate and have since been a lecturer then senior lecturer.

I am committed to research, teaching and learning and student experience.

Professional memberships and activities

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • Member of the Society of Legal Scholars
  • Member of the Association of Law Teachers
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts
  • Member of the Socio-Legal Studies Association
  • Member of Justis
  • External examiner LLB (Hons) Nottingham Trent University 

Academic qualifications

  • LLB (Hons)
  • MA Healthcare Law and Ethics
  • PhD (University of Manchester)


My principal expertise as demonstrated through both my doctoral research and my British Academy research is clinical negligence. However, I have given media commentary on wider healthcare areas for example BBC radio Stoke on the Charlie Gard case.

Research interests

My principal research interest is clinical negligence and the myriad of questions as to how the changing structure of the NHS will impact on this area. This led me to becoming interested in the existence and operation of ‘non-delegable’ duties in a wider context. Additionally, I remain interested in wider questions relating to healthcare law and ethics particularly end of life and questions posed by newly emerging technologies.

Beyond the sphere of healthcare law, I am also interested in feminist legal issues and some areas of family law.

Enterprise and commercial interests

I was selected to participate in a transversal study visit “Understanding Teaching and Learning at University- A Hands-on approach” at the University of Munich December 2013 conducted as part of the European Lifelong Learning programme.

More recently I successfully obtained a BA/ Leverhulme small research grant along with co-investigators Professor Jo Samanta (Emeritus DMU) and Dr Ash Samanta (Leicester Royal Infirmary). The project was entitled “To what extent are clinical guidelines used as a proxy for the standard of care in medical negligence litigation”. The research involved a questionnaire survey of practicing lawyers who undertake clinical negligence work in England and Wales, building upon this the team then carried out a number of interviews with elite practitioners in the area.

The outcomes from this research formed the basis of a dissemination event “Clinical Guidelines, Patient Safety and Negligence” held at Friends House, Euston Road, London on the 27th of September 2018. This data from this research is still being interrogated and an article for Medical Law Review detailing the findings of the research and contextualising it, is currently in progress. The research has also resulted in an edited collection on the subject “Clinical Guidelines and the law. A multi-disciplinary perspective” being commissioned by Edward Elgar with the publishing editors Prof Samanta, Dr Samanta and Dr Beswick which is expected late summer 2020.


In addition to the modules on which I have module leaderships I also teach on the Level 5 module Property Law and Application.


Written Evidence to the Women and Equalities Committee's inquiry, Menopause and the workplace published by UK Parliament 20th October 2021

Ash Samanta, Jo Samanta, Joanne Beswick “Responsible Practice or Restricted Practice? An Empirical Study of the Use of Clinical Guidelines in Medical Negligence Litigation” (2021) 29 Medical Law Review 205

“Grant v Edwards As a Landmark for Women” in Women’s Legal Landmarks editors Rosemary Auchmuty and Erika Rackley Ashgate. The book was launched at the reception 'Women's Legal Landmarks: Celebrating the History of Women and Law in the UK and Ireland' – on the 31st January 2019 at Matrix Chambers, London.

“The law in England and Wales on Mental Health Treatment in the Community”
Dr Jo Beswick and Professor Michael Gunn in Care of the Mentally Disordered Offender in the Community (2nd Edition) edited by Alec Buchanan and Lisa Wootton (Oxford University Press)

Devo-Wo(man)? A Move in Respect of Personal Sovereignty and Decision- Making in Healthcare
Joanne Beswick
(2015) 23 Medical Law Review 683

“A Brave New Bolam” (2012) University of Manchester

Who’s Caring for Me?
Professor Margaret Brazier and Joanne Beswick
(2006) 7 Medical Law International 183

A First Class Service? Setting the Standard of Care in the Contemporary NHS
Joanne Beswick
(2007) 15 Medical Law Review 245

Paper in
The Family Law and Society Series Editor Michael Freeman:
Volume Marriage, Cohabitation, Regulating Intimacy, Affection and Care
Editor Alison Diduck (London, 2008, Ashgate)

Recent Conference Papers

“The Power of Equality (Except if you play Sport): why the Equality Act 2010 Reinforces Discrimination”
Dr Jo Beswick and Kris Lines
Conference “Equality Act 2010: Five Years On”
University of Chester (Organised jointly with Liverpool University)
22nd June 2015

Grant v Edwards - As a Land Mark for Women
Dr Jo Beswick
University of Reading
19th-20th November 2015
Paper ‘Do Patients need New Law for Life Saving Treatments?’ at “Incentivising Innovation and Higher Standards in Regulation and Liability Relating to Medicines- The Society of Legal Scholars Annual Seminar 2015” September 15th 2015 Durham University.

in the UK for Quality Education

Sustainable Development Goal 4, Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023

for Career Prospects

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Facilities

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023

of Research Impact is ‘Outstanding’ or ‘Very Considerable’

Research Excellence Framework 2021

of Research is “Internationally Excellent” or “World Leading”

Research Excellence Framework 2021

Four Star Rating

QS Star Ratings 2021