Personal profile

Scholarly biography

Alex Newbury joined the University of Brighton as a Senior Lecturer in September 2014, having previously held a lectureship at Royal Holloway, University of London. She gained her doctorate from the University of Sussex entitled ‘Youth Crime, Referral Orders and Restorative Justice’ in 2008. This research involved in-depth interviews with 41 young offenders over the course of their referral orders, plus work with Youth Offending Teams in two geographical areas. This research prompted further work examining the perceptions of young people about the impact of alcohol on their offending, and in particular to what extent gender and education had an impact upon this. Prior to becoming an academic, Alex was a qualified solicitor and practiced in civil law, child, and family law for ten years in Yorkshire and the South-east. 

Alex is Principal Investigator on a British Academy Grant (Sept 2019 – August 2021) investigating the impact of Legal Aid cuts on litigants in person in the family courts, and the role of student Legal Companions in going some way to bridge this gap. This is a collaborative project with Dr Sarah Moore, University of Bath and aims to examine how far recent increases in people taking their own cases to court impacts upon justice, procedure and policy. It follows on from their joint-authored book, Legal Aid in Crisis: Assessing the Impact of Reform.


Selected Publications

Newbury, A & Dingwall, G (2020) ‘Is it different for girls? Responding to Teenage Binge Drinking: Recognising Differential Gender Perception or Respecting Equality’ in Contemporary Challenges to Human Rights Law edited by C Smyth, R Lang and J Clayton Thompson, Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Moore, S & Newbury, A (2017) Legal Aid in Crisis, Bristol: Policy Press.

Newbury, A (2016) ‘Youth Crime: Whose Responsibility?’ (in Chinese), CHEN Bo (Translator) in Juvenile Crime and Delinquency, Vol. 6.

Newbury, A & Dingwall, G (2013) ‘‘It lets out all my demons’: Female young offenders’ perceptions of the impact of alcohol on their offending behaviour’ in International Journal of Law, Crime and Justice, Vol. 41, No. 4, 12.2013, p. 277-291.

Newbury, A (2012) ‘Illegal Leisure Revisited: Changing Patterns of Alcohol and Drug Use in Adolescents and Young Adults’ by J Aldridge, F Measham, L Williams (Book Review) in Youth Justice: An International Journal, December 2012 12: 269-271.

Newbury, A (2011) ‘Very Young Offenders and the Criminal Justice System: Are We Asking the Right Questions?’ Child and Family Law Quarterly, 22 (1) 94-114.

Newbury, A (2011) ‘”I would have been able to hear what they think”: Tensions in achieving restorative outcomes in the English Youth Justice System’ Youth Justice: An International Journal, 11 (3) 250-265. 

Newbury, A (2008) 'Youth Crime: Whose Responsibility?' Journal of Law and Society, 35(1) 131-149.

Newbury, A (2008) 'Youth Crime: Whose Responsibility?' in Lind C and Keating H (eds) Children, Family Responsibilities and the State, Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell  [chapter also published as journal article above]


Research on very young offenders cited in The Guardian newspaper: 

Williams R (2013) ‘Were James Bulger's killers too young to stand trial?’ The Guardian, 5 February 2013

Conference Papers 

‘Is it different for girls? The potential and impact of gender when considering perceptions about binge-drinking amongst teenage drinkers’, Contemporary Issues in Human Rights Conference, Brighton, December 2018

‘The impact of alcohol and gender on young people's offending - a need for more tailored education?’. British Society of Criminology Conference, Plymouth, July 2015

‘Changing risky pathways: Young peoples’ perceptions about the impact of alcohol on their offending behaviour and the need for early interventions’. Conference of the Journal of Youth Studies, Copenhagen, March 2015

‘Young peoples’ views about the impact of alcohol on their offending behaviour – is it different for girls?’ The Howard League for Criminal Justice Conference: Re-imagining Youth Justice, London, April 2014

‘YOTs, Restorative Justice and Young Offenders: Challenges and Opportunities.’ Invited speaker at Only Connect, a Youth Justice Charity, London, March 2014

‘Restorative Justice at the Deep End: Youth Crime and Young Offenders’. Invited Speaker. One of three key speakers at RJ Seminar at the University of Sussex, November 2013

‘Key Barriers to Restorative Outcomes in the English Youth Justice System – Lessons from Research’, Socio-Legal Studies Association Conference, Sussex, April 2011

‘The Involvement of Parents in the Youth Justice System: a case of the sins of the son being visited upon the father?' British Society of Criminology Conference, Cardiff, July 2009

'Victims, Young Offenders and Referral Orders: Restorative Potential?', Criminology and Social Care Conference, Royal Holloway, February 2009

‘Restorative Potential or Irreconcilable Tensions? Victims, Young Offenders and Referral Orders' British Society of Criminology Conference, Huddersfield, July 2008

 'The Involvement of Parents in the Youth Justice System: the impact of gender and responsibilisation' Gender, Family Responsibility and Legal Change Conference, University of Sussex, July 2008

‘Youth Crime and Responsibility: Is Restorative Justice the Way Forward?' SLSA Conference, Stirling, April 2006

Supervisory Interests

My most recent doctoral student successfully passed her viva in January 2019. Her doctorate assesses the impact of cuts to Legal Aid on the administration of immigration law and asylum cases.

I am now supervising a student examining issues around anonymity for both complainants and defendants in rape trials.

I would be interested in supervising other doctoral students with interests in Legal Aid, or in research areas covering crime, criminal justice, restorative justice, or youth offending.

Approach to teaching

Alex is Module Leader for the first year core module, Criminal Justice and Theory. She is also Module Leader and key supervisor for the final year Dissertation module, and part of the team teaching Legal Research Projects. 

She believes teaching should blend both academic and theoretical study with approaches that incorporate real-world skills. She has particular interests in the use of presentations and team work as part of the assessment process because of their importance in honing skills required for employment in the modern workplace, and most especially the legal profession.


  • K Law (General)
  • Criminology
  • Legal Aid
  • Youth Crime and Justice
  • Criminal Law
  • Alcohol-related offending


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