School of Law, Politics and Sociology


The School of Law, Politics and Sociology is a vibrant research unit within which faculty undertake research on a wide range of topics, as individual researchers, within domestic and international teams of researchers, and within renowned research centres, including the Sussex European Institute, Sussex Centre for the study of Corruption, Centre for Gender Studies, Sussex Centre for Human Rights Research and the Crime Research Centre.

We work with scholars within the UK and internationally, with governmental and non-governmental organisations, with the private sector and the media, and have strong links with research and community projects from the local Sussex area to the United Nations. We are always seeking to develop our projects and welcome contact. We have a wide range of research training courses at postgraduate levels, encourage students to realise their potential in research and seek to prepare them on an individual basis for professional life after the completion of their studies.

Research Excellence Framework 2021

We're delighted with our performance in the Research Excellence Framework 2021 (REF 2021). The vast majority of the overall outputs of all three departments were assessed as ‘world leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’, reflecting the strong focus on the originality, significance and rigour of research in the School of Law, Politics and Sociology.

The School of Law, Politics and Sociology (LPS) made submissions to 3 Units of Assessment: Law (UoA 18), Sociology (UoA 21) and Area Studies (UoA 25).

Sussex Law School research was assessed overall to be 34% ‘world leading’ (4*) and 43 % ‘internationally excellent’ (3*). These results, alongside those relating to the quality of our impact case studies, represent a significant improvement on those that we achieved in the previous REF (2014). Law is now ranked 15th in the UK for research power in the Times Higher Education rankings. School of Law webpage

The Department of Politics’ research was assessed overall to be 42% ‘world leading’ (4*) and 54 % ‘internationally excellent’ (3*), with their impact cases being assessed as very considerable and outstanding. 40 outputs were submitted along with 2 impact case studies. More about the Department of Politics.

The Department of Sociology and Criminology’s research was assessed overall to be 45% ‘world leading’ (4*) and 40 % ‘internationally excellent’ (3*) with both of their impact case studies assessed as outstanding (4*), demonstrating the significance of research focused on making a difference in the world. 46 outputs were submitted along with 2 impact case studies. More about the Department of Sociology and Criminology.

Across the University of Sussex as a whole, 89% of research activity submitted to REF 2021 was categorised as either ‘world-leading’ (40.6%) or ‘internationally excellent’ (48.4%).

The results of REF 2021 were published on 12 May 2022.

See all REF results and read the stories behind the research we submitted.

At the level of professional researchers in the UK, in the European Union, or further afield, we encourage visiting fellows to join us in developing their research projects in conjunction with our own. You are also welcome to visit our Departmental research pages, or to contact us directly.