University of New South Wales Faculty of Law Research Series
Last Updated: 16 May 2012
Assessing Research Performance in the Discipline of Law, 2006-2011
Professor Kathy Bowrey, University of New South Wales
This paper is available for download at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2060801
This article is a Report to Council of Australian Law Deans 2012. This paper may also be referenced as  UNSWLRS 17.
This report surveys the current state of research
assessment in the discipline of law in Australia. Its purpose is to document
is already known in light of the discipline’s participation in
government-led research performance assessment initiatives from
2006 to 2011 and
to draw out the challenges in assessing research quality that Law faces in the
future. The report is in four parts,
which, combined, provide a clearer
empirical foundation for assessing existing research areas and publication
opportunities for legal
Part One: Assessing Law Outputs explains the Higher Education Research Data Collection (HERDC) in relation to law. Part Two: Research Assessment Codes evaluates the fit of FOR codes with current legal research areas, making recommendations for appropriate accommodation of several new research specialisations to provide a clearer picture of the diversity of legal research and assist in assignment of grant assessors. Part Three: Specialist Law Journal Ranking provides a brief explanation of the heritage of the ARC ERA2010 journal ranking list and a discussion of its reliability. It also evaluates current research specialisations with respect to journal rankings in order to provide feedback on areas where little is known about publication venues. Part Four: General Law Journal Ranking analyses ERA 2010 ranked A and A* Australian General Law Journals by subject area and author alignment, to provide a clearer understanding of the ambit of these prestigious publication venues.
Neither the report nor its recommendations have been formally endorsed by CALD at this time.