Alan received his undergraduate and graduate education in Oxford, being awarded his BA in Law (first class) in 1997. Thereafter, he was awarded the degrees of BCL (first class) and DPhil. Following a period as a lecturer at the University of Birmingham, Alan returned to Oxford in 2003 to take up his fellowship at Hertford College. He is now a Professor at the University of Bristol.
Alan’s research focuses predominantly on theoretical issues in domestic, European and International labour law. His book ‘The Democratic Aspects of Trade Union Recognition’ was published in 2009 by Hart Publishing. It was awarded the SLS Peter Birks’ Prize for Outstanding Legal Scholarship in 2010.
He is currently coordinating a Leverhulme International Research Network with Professor Tonia Novitz at the University of Bristol following the successful award of a large scale grant. Details of the network’s activities can be found here. The network includes academics from Stanford, Osgoode Hall, and Monash Universities.
Additionally, current research projects include: the intersection between migrant status and labour rights; European Social Dialogue and theories of deliberative democracy; and the constitutionalisation of freedom of association in comparative perspective. His work has been cited by Advocate Generals in the Court of Justice of the European Union in respect of working time regulation. Most recently, his work was cited with approval by the United Kingdom Supreme Court on the issue of sham contracts of employment in Autoclenz v Belcher. He is a member of the Executive Committee of the Institute of Employment Rights.