Sarah Atkins

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

family law, child law, human rights, legal ethics, international law, asylum law, refugee law, constitutional law, law of outer space

Personal profile


I am a qualified (non-practising) solicitor in two jurisdictions (the Republic of Ireland and England & Wales). I joined the university as a teaching fellow in 2015. 

Prior to working at UoP I was employed as a solicitor in private practice in Portsmouth in the area of private client and prior to that for the Legal Aid Board in Ireland in the area of child protection and family law. During 2014, I was part of a research project undertaken by the Irish Human Rights & Equality Commission [IHREC] into Direct Provision of asylum seekers and delays in the Irish asylum system. I also lectured in Griffith College Cork, Ireland.

I am a graduate of University College Cork, Ireland.

Teaching Responsibilities

I currently coordinate the Family & Child Law module and am on the teaching team of Public Law.

In previous years I have coordinated the following modules: Public international law, Jurisprudence & Ethics, Public Law, Legal Project and Legal Writing & Research. In previous years I have also been on teaching teams for the following modules: Equality & Human Rights, Business & Employment Law and Research & Professional Development.

I have UG and PG dissertation supervision.


Research Interests

My research area is the human rights of asylum-seeker and refugee children.

Research Interests

Regular contributor on 'the law of outer space' to the annual Stargazing event Organised by the University of Portsmouth’s Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation (ICG) and the National Museum of the Royal Navy with support from the Hampshire Astronomical Group.

Research Interests

I am Co-Investigator on an AHRC funded year-long research project entitled 'International trafficking and exploitation of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) within England and Wales'. The PI on this project is Prof. Anita Franklin (Dept. of Sociology).

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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