Dr Olaoluwa Olusanya PhD, PGCert, LLM, LLB (Hons), FHEA
Aberystwyth Law School
My research over the last 20 years has focussed around the armed forces community including serving personnel and veterans and their families (sentencing, substantive criminal law and criminology). In recent years, my work has been underpinned by New Legal Realism (NLR) and has focused on the issues of access to justice for veterans and their families; also extending to the methods used in this field. As Principal Investigator for the Veterans Legal Link project, I lead a multi-disciplinary team comprising lawyers, computer scientists and sociologists. My team and I are conducting ground-breaking longitudinal investigations of the relationship between access to justice and mental health. We recently conducted the first longitudinal study that examined the relationship between mental health problems and legal help-seeking behaviour among veterans (N= 234). Collier, W.G.A., Olusanya, O., Griffiths, G., Knapp, V., Smid, L ., & Snook, C. (2023). Legal Help-Seeking Behaviour Among Veterans: The link between time elapsed in seeking help and legal options to address a legal matter. International Journal of the Legal Profession (ACCEPTED/IN PRESS). We are also conducting a large-scale longitudinal study focusing on Legal Interventions’ Impact on Wellbeing for Veterans. The study involves administering a wellbeing survey pre and post receipt of legal advice provided by the VLL.
My research has attracted funding from various funders including the National Lottery Community Fund, The Royal British Legion and the Ministry of Defence. The Veterans Legal Link project relies on an extensive network of stakeholders and partner organisations so as to meet the complex needs of vulnerable veterans and their families. In order to better meet these complex needs, the project used participatory action research approaches to develop Auxilium Software Portal- the UK's first access to justice platform for veterans.
I have authored several books and journal articles on topics relating to the armed forces community and my previous works have been cited by the International Criminal Court (ICC) https://www.icc-cpi.int/CourtRecords/CR2014_03519.PDF and the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) https://www.eccc.gov.kh/sites/default/files/documents/courtdoc/Case%20001AppealJudgementEn.pdf
I am currently Reader in Law at the Department of Law and Criminology where I am the Founder and Principal Investigator (Director) of the Veterans Legal Link project and Director of Learning and Teaching.
I enjoy teaching and research and public and community engagement and undertake several external leadership roles that are reflective of my interests including: Member Office for Veterans' Affairs (OVA) UK Government Academic Advisory Board, Member National Advice Network (NAN) Welsh Government, Member Wales Pro Bono Committee, Member Advance HE Strategic Advisory Group Learning and Teaching, Member Pers Hwb (Personnel Hub) Coordination Panel, British Army (Wales) and Member Ceredigion Armed Forces Community Covenant. I was also a Member of Forces in Mind Trust Research Centre Advisory Group and a Member of the Board of Trustees of Citizens Advice Ceredigion.
Previously, I was the Lead ‘Sentencing’ American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section International Criminal Justice Standards Task Force and an Elected UK representative of the International Law Association Research Committee on the International Criminal Court. I serve on the Editorial Boards of the Nigerian Yearbook of International Law (Springer) and Race and Justice: An International Journal (SAGE).
As founder of the Family Legal Clinic (FLC), I feel proud that we won the prestigious Highly Commended Award in the Best Contribution by a Pro Bono Clinic category (LawWorks Pro Bono Awards, 2020). I have been shortlisted twice for the National Teaching Fellowship award in recognition of my contributions to clinical legal education (the study of law through real-world legal activities).
Founder and Principal Investigator (Director) of the Veterans Legal Link project and Director of Learning and Teaching.