About the research project

Law, Terrorism and the Right to Know was a three year research programme funded by a £300,000 joint award from two UK government research councils, the ESRC and AHRC.


The programme explores democratic traditions of media freedom, and the contemporary demands of national and international security.  It looks especially at the ways governments and courts deal with security related matters, and the relationships between the state and the media.


The issues we examine include the ways that different parties involved in controlling access to, and the communication of, information see the relationships between principles of open justice, the rule of law, public accountability and national security. The programme aims to ascertain how both liberty and security might best be sought, exploring how much and in what ways access to information is closed down and what the effects of this might be.  We also aim to look beyond whether there is a chilling effect in the traditional sense of increased self-censorship, to the broader impact of the legal framework on the ways that information can be selectively and strategically presented or concealed, and the respective roles of the state and the media in these processes.


During the course of the project we are looking to involve a wide range of participants.  Please contact us if you would like to become involved with the project. 

Contact us

Dr Lawrence McNamara

School of Law

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