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Dr. Alan Cusack


Alan is a graduate of University College Cork (BCL, LLM, PhD), University College Dublin (Dip. Emp) and the Law Society of Ireland (Solicitor, 2012).

In 2017, Alan completed a PhD in the School of Law at University College Cork in the area of access to justice for victims of crime with intellectual disabilities. In pursuit of his studies, Alan was awarded a Government of Ireland PhD scholarship from the Irish Research Council as well as a Faculty of Law PhD Scholarship from University College Cork. Alan's research has been widely published in national and international journals including, The International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, The International Journal of Evidence and Proof; Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly and Law, Crime and History and he has provided expert analysis on the treatment of vulnerable witnesses for national media outlets in Ireland including Newstalk FM and The Irish Examiner.

Alan is a qualified solicitor and, subsequent to commencing his doctoral research, practiced for a number of years with Arthur Cox solicitors in Dublin. In 2013 Alan was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Centre for Criminal Justice and Human Rights at University College Cork and, more recently, in 2018 he was elected to the Board of Directors for the Irish Criminal Justice and Disability Network. Alan is a professional member of The Law Society of Ireland and is also a member of the Society of Legal Scholars and the Socio-Legal Studies Association. In 2015 Alan was an Academic Visitor at the Centre for Criminology at the University of Oxford (January - March 2015). Alan was appointed in 2018 to the editorial board for the Irish Judicial Studies Journal.

Research Interests

Alan's research interests lie in the broad areas of criminal procedure, criminal law, victimology, criminology, the laws of evidence and disability studies.
Alan's PhD thesis was entitled
"Ireland's Criminal Justice System and its Response to Victims of Crime with Intellectual Disabilities: Adversarial Procedure on Trial". The project involved a critical analysis of the manner in which Ireland's adversarial model of justice impacts upon victims of crime with intellectual disabilities. Specifically, the project assessed how Ireland's traditional adherence to normative adversarial processes at each of the pre-trial and trial stages of the criminal justice system inhibits participation by victims of crime with intellectual disabilities.

Teaching Interests

Teaching Courses Completed:
Sep-May 2016: Scholarly Approaches to Teaching & Learning in Higher Education, University College Cork.
Sep-May 2015: Teaching and Learning for Graduate Students, University College Cork.
Sep-May 2019: Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, University College Cork.

Professional Activities


  • 2019 COST Action 18121: Cultural Victimology, This COST Action intends to develop an innovative, functional and overarching theoretical framework for cultural victimology. The economic dimension of the activities carried out under the Action has been estimated at €56 million.
  • 2019 North-South Criminology Conference Organising Committee, University of Limerick,
  • 2018 Victimology Working Group, European Society of Criminology,
  • 2014 The Centre for Criminal Justice and Human Rights (CCJHR), University College Cork,
  • 2013 The Centre for Criminal Justice and Human Rights (CCJHR) Postgraduate Conference Organising Committee, University College Cork,


  • 2018 Member of Editorial Board, Irish Judicial Studies Journal
  • 2018 Director, Irish Criminal Justice and Disability Network
  • 2017 Alternate Chair, Quality Assurance Board, Garda Training College, Templemore, Co. Tipperary
  • 2017 Member & Media Manager, Centre for Crime, Justice and Victim Studies, University of Limerick
  • 2015 Member, Society of Legal Scholars
  • 2015 Member, Socio-Legal Studies Association
  • 2013 Member, Arthur Cox Alumni Network, Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2
  • 2012 Member, The Law Society of Ireland, Blackhall Place, Dublin 7


  • 2017 University College Cork - PhD
  • 2011 The Law Society of Ireland - Solicitor's Parchment
  • 2011 University College Dublin - Diploma in Employment Law
  • 2008 University College Cork - LLM
  • 2007 University College Cork - BCL


  • 2017 - Gold Medal, Best Letter to the Editor, Cork Online Law Review
  • 2017 - Postgraduate Course of the Year in Law, LLM General (Author)
  • 2015 - Visiting Scholar at the Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford
  • 2014 - PhD Research Training Scheme Scholarship, Graduate School of the College of Business and Law, University College Cork
  • 2014 - IALT Conference 2014 PhD Scholarship, Irish Association of Law Teachers
  • 2013 - Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Scholarship
  • 2013 - Faculty of Law PhD Scholarship, University College Cork


  • 2014 School of Law, University College Cork - Part-Time Assistant Lecturer in the Law of Evidence
  • 2009 Arthur Cox, Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2 - Associate Solicitor


    • Convener and Founder, CCJHR Working Group Book Club (2014- 2017)
    • Researcher, Vulnerable Witness Inter-Agency Group, Rape Crisis Network Ireland (2016- To Date)
    • Completed Disability Law Summer School, Centre for Disability Law and Policy, NUI Galway (June 2014)
    • Investigator, Review of Second National Strategy on Domestic, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence 2016-2021 (2019 - To Date).
      • Management Committee Delegate, COST Action CA18121: Cultural Victimology (2019 - 2023).
        • Editor, Irish Judicial Studies Journal (2018 - To Date).
          • Investigator, Review of Services to Assist in Finalisation of New Victims Charter, Department of Justice (2019 - To Date)
            • Researcher, Victim Participation in Criminal Proceedings, University of Oxford (February - April 2015)
              • PhD Examiner, Stephen Strauss Walsh, University of Limerick (21 November 2020)
                • Reviewer, International Journal of Evidence and Proof (2019 - To Date)


                  • June 2011: Participated as an on-site construction volunteer for an infrastructure relief project in Mwandi, Zambia.


Book Chapter


'Reforming Ireland's Adversarial Trial for Victims of Crime with Intellectual Disabilities'
Alan Cusack
O. Lynch, L. O'Connell and J. Windle (eds.) 'Giving Voice to Diversity in Criminological Research'


‘The Pre-Trial Position of Vulnerable Victims of Crime in Ireland'
Alan Cusack
P. Cooper, and L. Hunting (eds.) 'Addressing Vulnerability in Justice Systems'

Conference Publication

Other Journal


Other Publication

Peer Reviewed Journal


Intellectual disabilities in Irish prisons: Could Article 13 of the UNCRPD hold the key?
Gulati G.;Cusack A.;Kilcommins S.;Dunne C.
International journal of law and psychiatry DOI: 10.1016/j.ijlp.2019.101540

Published Report