Professor Julia Black

Professor Julia Black

Professor of Law

LSE Law School

Room No
Cheng Kin Ku Building 7.01
Key Expertise

About me

Julia Black is Strategic Director of Innovation and Professor of Law at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Julia joined LSE as a lecturer in 1994, having completed her first degree in Jurisprudence and her DPhil at Oxford University.  She was LSE’s Pro Director of Research from 2014-19 and interim Director of LSE from 2016-17.   

Her primary research interest is in the dynamics and legitimacy of regulatory systems.  She has had a British Academy / Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellowship, been a Visiting Fellow at the University of Sydney and at All Souls College, Oxford, and in 2014 was the Sir Frank Holmes Visiting Professor in Public Policy at the University of Victoria, Wellington. She has written extensively on regulatory issues in a number of areas, and has advised policy makers, consumer bodies and regulators on issues of institutional design and regulatory policy.

Julia has a range of external activities.  She is an External Member of the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Committee and of the Bank’s Financial Markets Infrastructure Board, Senior Independent member of the Board of UK Research and Innovation, the UK’s main research funding body, a member of the Council of Science and Technology, on the Board of the Courtauld Institute of Art, and a director of Zinc, a social sciences, mission based incubator.   She is also President of the British Academy, the United Kingdom's national academy for the humanities and the social sciences, taking up the role in July 2021.

Research interests

Julia's principal research interest is to explore the nature, dynamics and legitimacy of regulatory regimes, both state and non-state. She also specialises in financial services regulation, and is interested in the regulation of risk, particularly in biotechnology, and in public law.

REF Impact Case Study

External activities

Julia has a range of external roles spanning her interests in regulation, in universities, and in policies to support research and innovation. 

With respect to regulation, she is an external member of two regulatory committees at the Bank of England, the Prudential Regulation Committee (responsible for the prudential supervision of the UK’s banks, building societies and insurance companies) and the Financial Markets Infrastructure Board (responsible for the prudential supervision of the UK’s recognised payment systems, central securities depositories and central counterparties.  She also engages regularly with regulators in other sectors on matters of regulatory strategy, and was a board member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority from Jan 2014- Dec 2019 and chaired its policy committee.

Her roles with UKRI, the Council of Science and Technology and the British Academy focus on support for the research and innovation system of the UK, particularly for the SHAPE disciplines social sciences, humanities and the arts for people and the economy).   She also leads for the LSE on a £7.4m Connecting Capability Fund grant from Research England to support commercialisation of research in the SHAPE disciplines, which includes chairing the Aspect consortium  and being a director on the board of Zinc, a mission based venture builder for companies who want to address the world’s greatest challenges drawing on research in the social sciences:

Julia is also a member of the governing body of the Courtauld Institute of Art, a leading research-intensive university specialising in the history of art, curating and conservation and home to the Courtauld Gallery, which houses a significant collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings:


Regulatory Innovation: A Comparative Analysis (Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, October 2005); co-edited with M. Lodge and M. Thatcher

Much hype has been generated about the importance of innovation for public and private sector organisations. "Regulatory Innovation" offers the first detailed study of regulatory innovation in a multiplicity of countries and domains. This book draws on in-depth studies of innovation in regulatory instruments and practices across high- and low-technology sectors, across different countries and from the early to the late 20th century. Highlighting different 'worlds' of regulatory innovation - those of the individual, the organisation, the state, the global polity, and innovation itself, this book offers a fresh perspective and valuable insights for the practice and study of regulatory innovation. The explicit comparative focus of the case studies and the 'worlds of regulatory innovation' approach make this book essential reading for academic researchers and students interested in regulation.

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 Rules and Regulators (Oxford: OUP, 1997)

Julia Black's book is the first authoritative study of rulemaking in one of the most important areas of economic life: financial services. The books has three main aims: first, to build a jurisprudential and linguistic analysis of rules and interpretation, drawing out the implication of these analyses and developing quality proposals for how rules could be used as instruments of regulation. Second, it interprets that analysis and set of proposals with an empirical study of the formation and use of rules in a particular regulatory system: financial services, and third, it evaluates the nature of the rulemaking process. The author's main case study, examining the use of self-regulation in the financial services sector, complements the detailed analysis of rule formation and uses. The book will be an invaluable addition to the libararies of all administrative lawyers and anyone with an interest in the provision and regulation of financial services.

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Reports / Discussion Papers

 'Criminalising Bank Managers' (Julia Black and David Kershaw) September 2013

'The Commission on Banking Standards Report and Bank Incentives: A Missed Opportunity' (Julia Black and David Kershaw) September 2013

'Legal Risks and Risks to Lawyers' (Julia Black, LSE and Karen Anderson, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP) June 2013

'Creating an ethical framework for the financial services industry' (Julia Black, LSE and Karen Anderson, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP) February 2013

'Regulation, Education and Training' (Legal Education and Training Review Symposium, May 2012)

'Breaking up is hard to do : The next stage' (Julia Black, LSE and Martyn Hopper, Herbert Smith LLP) May 2012

Description of regulatory approaches to assessing the effectiveness of regulatory activities at low-risk sites and proposed good practice framework : Phase 2 report (SNIFFER, August 2011)

'Calibrating Regulation' in Legal Services Board, Understanding the Economic Rationale for Legal Services Regulation - A Collection of Essays  (March 2011)

'Breaking up is hard to to: the future of UK financial regulation?'  with Martyn Hopper, partner, Herbert Smith, LLP (Law and Financial Markets Project; London School of Economics; Herbert Smith : December 2010)

'A Review of Enforcement Techniques' Appendix A, Law Commission, Criminal Liability in Regulatory Contexts: A Consultation Paper Consultation Paper No 195, HMSO, 2010.

'Risk-based Regulation'  in  The Future of the Legal Services : Emerging Thinking, Legal Services Board, June 2010

'Legal and compliance risk management: Towards principles of best practice: Roundtable one, 29 April 2008: Challenges of a changing environment' (Herbert Smith / LSE, 2009)

'"Chancer", "Failure" or "Trier"? Regulatory Conversations and the Construction of Identities' Crime Narratives in Context Network Seminar Papers (2008)

From Local to Global : The rise of AIM as a stock market for growing companies :  a comprehensive report analysing the growth of AIM, Sridhar Arcot, Julia Black and Geoffrey Owen, September 2007

Involving Consumers in Securities Regulation, prepared for the Taskforce to Modernize Securities Regulation in Canada, June 2006

A Legal Services Board: Roles and Operationalising Issues, R.Baldwin, J.Black and M.Cave, July 2005

The Development of Risk Based Regulation in Financial Services: Canada, the UK and Australia : A Research Report, September 2004

Risk, Trust and Regulation : The Case of Pensions, Working Paper for the National Consumers Council, March 2002

Managing Discretion (Published as: ARLC Conference Papers - Penalties: Policy, Principles and Practice in Government Regulation), June 2001