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Prof Aileen McHarg

LL.B., Ph.D.


Aileen McHarg has been Professor of Public Law and Human Rights at Durham Law School since September 2019. Prior to that she held a Chair in Public Law at Strathclyde University, and before that posts at Glasgow and Bristol Universities.

Her main teaching and research interests lie in UK and Scottish constitutional and administrative law. She publishes widely in these fields, but has particular expertise in devolution and the UK's territorial constitution. She also researches in energy law and regulation, where her publications focus on questions of energy governance and the promotion and regulation of sustainable energy. 

Professor McHarg welcomes applications for PhD supervision in both of these areas. 

Research interests

  • UK and Scottish constitutional law
  • Devolution and the territorial constitution
  • Administrative law
  • Energy governance
  • Sustainable energy regulation

Research groups

  • Human Rights Centre

Esteem Indicators

  • 2018: Co-Chair of the British-Irish Chapter of the International Society of Public Law:
  • 2018: Editorial Board Member, Public Law:
  • 2018: Member of the Scottish Government's Expert Panel on Environmental Charges and Other Measures:
  • 2016: Executive Committee Member of the UK Constitutional Law Association:
  • 2012: Member of the Law Society of Scotland's Constitutional Law Sub-Committee:
  • 2010: Editorial Advisory Board Member, Journal of Energy and Natural Resources Law:
  • 2006: Member of the Academic Advisory Group to the International Bar Association's Section on Energy, Environment Resources and Infrastructure Law:

Media Contacts

Available for media contact about:

  • English Law: Constitutional Law
  • Law & Crime: Devolution
  • Government: Devolution


Book review

  • McHarg, Aileen (2019). Popular Sovereignty in Early Modern Constitutional Thought. Public Law 2019(October): 804-806.

Chapter in book

  • McHarg, Aileen (2020). The Declaration of Arbroath and Scots Law. In Scotland and Arbroath 1320 - 2020: 700 Years of Fighting for Freedom, Sovereignty and Independence. Muller, Klaus Peter Bern, Switzerland: Peter Lang. 423-442.
  • McHarg, Aileen & Nicolson, Donald (2019). Judgment: Salvesen v Riddell. In Scottish Feminist Judgments: (Re)Creating Law from the Outside In. Cowan, Sharon, Kennedy, Chloe & Munro, Vanessa Hart Publishing. 410-412.
  • McHarg, Aileen (2020). Energy Justice: Understanding the 'Ethical Turn' in Energy Law and Policy. In Energy Justice and Energy Law. del Guayo, Inigo, Godden, Lee, Zillman, Donald, D., Montoya, Milton Fernando & Gonzalez, Jose Juan Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • McHarg, Aileen (2019). Devolution in Scotland. In The Changing Constitution. Jowell, Jeffrey & O'Cinneide, Colm Oxford University Press.
  • McHarg, A (2018). Unity and Diversity in the United Kingdom’s Territorial Constitution. In The Unity of Public Law? Doctrinal, Theoretical and Comparative Perspectives. Elliott, M, Varuhas, J & Stark, S Hart Publishing. 279-300.
  • McHarg, A (2016). The Constitutional Case for Independence. In The Scottish Independence Referendum: Constitutional and Political Implications. McHarg, A, Mullen,, Page, & Walker, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Journal Article

  • McHarg, A (2017). Administrative discretion, administrative rule-making and judicial review. Current Legal Problems 70(1): 267-303.
  • McCorkindale, C, McHarg, A & Scott, P (2018). The Courts, Devolution and Constitutional Review. University of Queensland Law Journal 36(2): 289-310.
  • McCorkindale, Christopher & McHarg, Aileen (2020). Tackling the Covid-19 Pandemic in Scotland. Revista Catalana de Dret Públic 2020: 256-265.
  • McHarg, Aileen & Mitchell, James (2017). Brexit and Scotland. British Journal of Politics and International Relations 19(3): 512 - 526.
  • McHarg, Aileen (2018). Navigating without maps constitutional silence and the management of the Brexit crisis. International Journal of Constitutional Law 16(3): 952-968.
  • McHarg, Aileen & McCorkindale, Christopher (2019). The Supreme Court and Devolution: The Scottish Continuity Bill Reference. Juridical Review 2019(2): 190-197.
  • McHarg, Aileen (2020). The Supreme Court's Prorogation Judgment: Guardian of the Constitution or Architect of the Constitution? Edinburgh Law Review 24(1): 88-95.
  • Cairney, Paul, McHarg, Aileen, McEwen, Nicola & Turner, Karen (2019). How to Conceptualise Energy Law and Policy for an Interdisciplinary Audience: the Case of Post-Brexit UK. Energy Policy 129: 459-466.

Other (Digital/Visual Media)

  • McHarg, Aileen (2019). The Defence of Parliamentary Democracy.
  • McCorkindale, C, McHarg, A & Mullen T (2020). The Continuity Bill is Dead - Long Live the Continuity Bill: Regulatory Alignment and Divergence in Scotland Post-Brexit.
  • McEwen, Nicola, McHarg, Aileen, Munro, Fiona, Cairney, Paul, Turner, Karen & Katris, Antonios (2019). Brexit and Renewables in Scotland.
  • Dougan, Michael, Hayward, Katy, Hunt, Jo, McEwen, Nicola, McHarg, Aileen & Wincott, Daniel (2020). UK Internal Market, Devolution and the Union.
  • McCorkindale, Chris & McHarg, Aileen (2020). Constitutional Pathways to a Second Scottish Independence Referendum.
  • McHarg, Aileen (2019). The Art of Judicial Disguise.
  • McHarg, Aileen (2019). Devolution at Twenty: Embedding a New Constitutional Paradigm.