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Law students showcase their research

The University of Warwick held its annual Undergraduate Research Support Scheme (URSS) Showcase earlier this month on the 13 November 2019 in the Chancellors Suite. Two of our current law students, Alexander Reay and Natalie Payne, were invited along to celebrate their achievements, exhibit their work and share their research and experience.

We asked Natalie who is studying on our Law with Study Abroad in English degree to tell us a little more about her research.

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“My research was around the law of statelessness and nationality in Hungary, which I was able to begin working towards during my year abroad in Budapest. The project considered who might be included in populations that are vulnerable to statelessness in this region and the historical context, and examined developments since Hungary introduced a dedicated statelessness determination procedure in 2007, considering the positives, where there is room for improvement, and what the implications could be for Europe as a whole.”

Natalie told us she applied for the URSS as she wanted the opportunity to research something that hadn’t been touched on during her degree so far and thought it would help to develop her skills in time managements and conducting interviews, therefore strengthening her CV for the future.

“The opportunity to work closely with academics in the law school and have support throughout the whole project from start to finish is a huge benefit to students, helping you to develop new skills and really get a feel for what working in academia could be like. It can lead onto other great opportunities too - I presented my research at the International Conference of Undergraduate Research (ICUR) in September, and I'm now thinking about getting my work published. It's really pushed me out of my comfort zone and has me thinking about what I could do next, including possible career paths and postgrad study.”


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Alongside our current students, four of our recently graduated students also took part in the showcase. Nisali Pieris, Charlotte Higgs and June Ong who studied on our LLB degree plus Bianca Caravtov who studied our Law and Sociology degree.

June researched the silence on legislative protection surrounding mental bullying occurring in student halls. Mental bullying, also known as social exclusion bullying is a distinct form of bullying which causes harm to the victim through the systematic manipulation and destruction of their peer relationships and social status. The project aimed to investigate whether “mental bullying” could potentially be criminalised, specifically those arising from people living in the same private setting but who do not have familial or intimacy ties.

June took part in the URSS to raise awareness and highlight the lack of protection for victims of mental bullying, especially for those living under the same roof. “The URSS experience was a great platform for me to catapult my interest in social justice and has inspired me to continue researching further in this area to plug the legislative gap.”

“Students are able to benefit from the URSS experience through learning more about a specific research area beyond their degree. It has been the highlight of my university experience and I’m sure it will be theirs too.”

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Bianca’s research project, written in conjunction with Hong Kong University, focused on China's Investment in Artificial Intelligence, particularly looking at the 2030 AI Initiative put forward by the government. As a result of undertaking the research project, it was found that investment in AI and Machine Learning, brings many benefits to the Chinese society in areas such as education, medicine and judicial proceedings, giving the population a higher quality of life.

Bianca shared, “it was one of the most beneficial initiatives I took part in. Being given 6 weeks to focus on a topic that I have an interest in without additional academic or personal distractions meant that I could fully engage with it. I cannot recommend the URSS project highly enough! Signing up to it was one of the best decisions I made during my time at Warwick.”


The Undergraduate Research Support Scheme enables undergraduate students to carry out an interdisciplinary summer research project. Applicants must get the support of academic supervisor and can apply for a URSS bursary of up to £1,500 to undertake their research project, either in the UK or abroad. Find out more. The deadline to apply is 12 January 2020.

Thu 28 Nov 2019, 14:10 | Tags: undergraduate, Alumni, Student Achievement