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Annika Newnham


Module convenor for LLB Family Law

Areas of interest

  • Child law
  • Autopoietic theory
  • The common intention constructive trust

Annika Newnham's research has focused on the different conditions for post-separation parenting in the two jurisdictions. It employs both autopoietic theory and a feminist perspective to consider how concepts like family, equality and parenthood are understood in the two countries, and examines law's over-reliance on rigid definitions and abstract presumptions as well as its inability to recognise the true value of care.

She has recently completed research into how courts decide contact and residence disputes with Dr Maebh Harding at the University of Warwick. Funded by the Nuffield Foundation, the project looks particularly at shared parenting, but also at the interaction between private and public child law, and aims to contribute to policy debate and law reform.

Engaging with the practitioner and policy communities has involved speaking at the Hampshire Family Court Forum and the Westminster Legal Policy Keynote Seminars on Family Justice. She is Joint Stream Convenor of Family Law for the Socio-Legal Studies Association's Annual Conferences.

Another current research interest is the common intention constructive trust and its use to reallocate ex-cohabitants' interests in family homes. She has argued for a greater recognition of the value of care in this context, too, and for a move away from outdated property-law based interpretations of intention.


Annika Newnham joined the School of Law in 2014, having previously worked at the University of Portsmouth and Sussex University. She is originally from Sweden, but moved to England in 1988.

Academic qualifications

DPhil, LLM, LLB, Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Selected publications

  • Harding, M & Newnham, A, "Initial Research Findings: The Typical Levels of Parental Involvement where Post-Separation Parenting is Resolved by Court Order" (2014) Family Law 672–675.
  • Newnham, A, "Common Intention Constructive Trusts: A Way Forward" (2013) Family Law 718–721.
  • Newnham, A, "Shared Residence: Lessons from Sweden" (2011) Child and Family Law Quarterly 251–267.
  • "Law's Gendered Understandings of Parents' Responsibilities in Relation to Shared Residence" in J Bridgeman, H Keating and C Lind (eds), Regulating Family Responsibilities (Ashgate 2011) 137–151.


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