Dr. Matthew Gibson specialises in criminal law doctrine and theory. He is a senior lecturer in the Law School, as well as a non-practising barrister (Honourable Society of the Middle Temple), member of the AHRC's Peer Review College and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Matt is also co-author, with David Ormerod and Karl Laird, of 'Smith, Hogan, and Ormerod's Criminal Law' (Oxford University Press), and sits on the advisory board of the Journal of Criminal Law.
Increasingly, Matt's work focusses on Andrew Ashworth's principle of 'fair labelling' - the idea that widely felt distinctions between kinds of offences and degrees of wrongdoing should be signalled by the law, with offences subdivided and labelled so as to represent fairly the nature and magnitude of the law-breaking. Matt is writing a book on the theory, policy and practice of fair labelling, to be published by Oxford University Press ('Oxford Monographs on Criminal Law and Justice').
Additionally, Matt researches more general issues of criminalisation, offence definition and offence classification. He is a member of the Criminal Law Reform Now Network's project on reforming the law of consent and deception in sexual offences. Elsewhere, he is working on a collaborative project on the partial defence to murder of loss of control. He has further research interests in criminal law and religious liberty. Prior to re-specialising in criminal law, his doctoral thesis investigated accommodation of religion in civil law (passing with no corrections). Matt's research has been published in the Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, Criminal Law Review, Journal of Criminal Law, Cambridge Law Journal and Ecclesiastical Law Journal, as well as edited collections from Routledge and Strasbourg University Press.
Matt teaches criminal law at Liverpool, having previously taught at the Universities of Durham and Newcastle. He is also regularly engaged as an external examiner. He has been a Visiting Scholar at Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford (part-funded by the Society of Legal Scholars); and at the Centre for Penal Theory and Penal Ethics, Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge. Matt is a graduate of the University of Durham (LLB; LLM), Northumbria University (PgDip - Bar Vocational Course) and the University of Liverpool (PhD).
Potential postgraduate students are welcome to contact Matt regarding supervision of research degrees falling within his areas of expertise. He also welcomes media queries on these areas.
Prizes or Honours
- £1,255.70 funding award in support of visiting post at the University of Oxford (Research Activities Fund, Society of Legal Scholars, 2021)
- £2,000.00 funding award in support of visiting post at the University of Cambridge (Research Development Fund, School of Law and Social Justice, University of Liverpool, 2018)
- Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (Higher Education Academy, 2017)
- £2,500.00 funding award (with Dr. Mark Dsouza, UCL) in support of the 2016 conference: 'Joint Enterprise after Jogee: Reconsidering Law and Policy'. (Small Projects and Events Fund, Society of Legal Scholars, 2016)
- Shortlisted (1 of 6): LawCareers.Net 'Law Lecturer of the Year' 2013 (LawCareers.Net, 2013)
- Doctoral scholarship 2008 - 2011 (Liverpool Law School, 2008)