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Personal profile

Personal Statement

My main research interests and specialisation lie in the fields of European Law and Labour Law (particularly European, national, and comparative labour law). I am particularly interested in trade unions and their role in empowering and protecting vulnerable workers.

I am currently working on an historical labour law project, funded by a British Academy Small Research Grant, which examines the interactions between exiled German trade unionists and British trade unions during World War Two. In this context, I am interested in different labour movements' understandings of the distribution of power in the workplace and trade unions’ potential in empowering workers in workplace decision-making

I have published widely in the field of (European) labour law including a monograph entitled New Labour Laws in Old Member States (CUP, 2017). The book was reviewed in the Edinburgh Law Review, the Industrial Law Journal (2018) 47:2 and (2018) 43(3) European Law Review where it was described by Professor Tamara Hervey as ‘socio-legal EU scholarship of the very best sort […] a rich and theoretically informed novel account of the law in practice; and inspiration for future legal developments. Beautifully produced and exquisitely written, it is a joy to read and a model for all to emulate.’

My contribution to the field of labour and employment relations research was acknowledged in 2018 when I was a runner up of the International Labor and Employment Relations Associations’ (ILERA) Luis Aparicio Prize for emerging scholars.

I have also published doctrinal work on the contract of employment (with David Cabrelli, University of Edinburgh) which was cited with approval by Lords Hope, Wilson and Sumption in the Supreme Court decision Société Générale v Geys [2012] UKSC 63. I am currently (together with David Cabrelli) examining the relationship between domination-based conceptions of social justice and labour law.

I am a case and comment editor for the Juridical Review (the Law Journal of the Scottish Universities) and an editor of Green's Employment Law Bulletin. I am on the Research Committe of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, the management board of the Scottish Universities Legal Network on Europe (SULNE) and am one of the lead academics in the Civil Society Brexit Project, funded by the Legal Education Foundation until 2022, which helps civil society organisations in Scotland to prepare for Brexit consequences for themselves or their service users.

I joined the University of Strathclyde in 2015 from the University of Stirling where I held a lectureship in law.

I received my Ph.D in Law from the University of Edinburgh in 2011. My PhD thesis was awarded the European Trade Union Confederation’s Brian Bercusson Award for the best PhD thesis to have been submitted in European Labour Law between 2006 and 2010.

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Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2017 2020

Civil Society and Brexit

Busby, N. & ZAHN, R.


Project: Research

Research Output 2008 2019

Open Access
court of justice
trade union

Scottish legal education after Brexit

Da Lomba, S., Fletcher, M. & Zahn, R., 3 Apr 2019, In : Law Teacher. 53, 2, p. 138-147 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

legal system
education system


Brian Bercusson Award

Rebecca ZAHN (Recipient), 2011

Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)

labor law
European Law

Activities 2014 2016

  • 4 Participation in conference
  • 4 Participation in workshop, seminar, course
  • 1 Types of Public engagement and outreach - Media article or participation
  • 1 Invited talk

Industrial Law Society Annual Conference

Rebecca Zahn (Invited speaker)
17 Sep 2016

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference

R. Zahn, ‘After the referendum and before Brexit… Where now for workers’ rights in the EU?’, European Law Blog, 28 June 2016 available at http://europeanlawblog.eu/?p=3248.

Rebecca Zahn (Blogger)
28 Jun 2016

Activity: Other activity typesTypes of Public engagement and outreach - Media article or participation