Professor Richard W Whitecross MA(Hons), LLB, Dip.LP, LLM, MSc (Taught), MSc (Research), PhD, FRAI, FRAS, NTF is Professor of Law and Head of Law, the Business School at Edinburgh Napier University, Scotland, UK.
Richard was a practicing commercial lawyer between 1989 and 1994 working in two leading law firms in Edinburgh. In 1993, he was invited to tutor on the Diploma in Legal Practice at the University of Edinburgh. Based on his positive experience of teaching, Richard left legal practice and undertook a LLM at the University of Edinburgh. He was invited to teach part-time at Napier and did so between 1994 – 1997. At this time, Richard was developing his doctoral research project. He undertook a MSc (Taught) in Social Anthropology (1997) and was awarded ESRC funding by the University of Edinburgh to complete MSc (Research) (Distinction) in 1998. In 1998, Richard won a fully funded ESRC Studentship to conduct ethnographic fieldwork in Bhutan.
Richard graduated with a PhD from the University of Edinburgh in 2002 with a groundbreaking ethnography of legal transformation in Bhutan for which he received the Royal Anthropological Institute Sutasoma Award.
In 2003, he won an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship held at the University of Edinburgh where he worked with Professor Thomas Hansen (now Stanford University). He was appointed a fixed term lecturer in Social Anthropology, University of Edinburgh in 2004.
In 2005, he was appointed as ESRC Research Fellow in Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Edinburgh. At this time, Richard became interested in the legal policy and moved in 2007 as a Senior Researcher to Justice Analytical Services, Scottish Government. At the Scottish Government, Richard led on socio-legal research on civil justice, family and child law, and latterly supervised a range of cross justice research initiatives working with the Scottish Courts and Tribunal Service, Scottish Prisons Service and Police Scotland.
In July 2012, Richard took up the post of Lecturer in Law at Edinburgh Napier University. In 2014, he became DBA lead in the Business School. In August 2017 he was awarded the title of Associate Professor and promoted to Professor in August 2020. Richard became head of Law in June 2019 and has led the growth and development of law at Napier.