Professor Sarah Murray
Started at UWA: 2007
Winner of the UWA Fay Gale Fellowship, 2017
UWA Institute of Advanced Studies Distinguished Early Career Fellowship for the Humanities, 2015
Winner of the Mollie Holman Doctoral Medal for Law at Monash University, 2011
Winner of the National Mediation Conference Scholarship, 2010
- Pocketing the Proceeds of Crime: The Legislation, Criminological Perspectives and Experiences
The overall aim of this project is to produce a suite of best practice recommendations for the reform of Australian proceeds of crime legislation with a view to ensuring just, valid and effective statutory schemes that achieve their legitimate objectives. This aim will be achieved through the first ever comparative criminological and legal analysis of Australian proceeds of crime legislation in three Australian jurisdictions: New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia. These recommendations will contribute to Australia being a key player in the international effort to address organised drug-related crime and terrorism.
- Public Purposes Trust Family Violence and Property Disputes: A pilot research project
This is an exploratory research project into a perceived unmet need for separated parties caught in a family violence dynamic to have access to legal assistance in order to resolve their property disputes.
The aim of the project is to scope the extent of the apparent problem and to explore ways of increasing the provision of legal and dispute resolution services to this sector of the community.
- WA Neighbourhood Justice Centre Feasibility Study
Dr Murray is conducting a feasibility study with Professor Harry Blagg and Suzie May for a pilot community justice centre in Western Australia. In a community justice centre, the court works with an interdisciplinary team to address the causes of criminality such as drug addiction, cognitive impairment, mental illness, poverty, abuse and intergenerational trauma. The community becomes a key agent of change, partnering with the centre to tackle local issues and improve safety and community cohesion.
The experience in Australia and overseas indicates that community justice centres, if properly designed, evaluated and resourced, can have enormous social benefits and can become hubs for justice innovation. In addressing the root causes of criminality, they can fuel significant reductions in crime, rates of reoffending and justice expenditure as well as creating culturally safer justice experiences, and courts which operate more efficiently and which the public respect and trust.
Professor Murray has received many teaching awards and nominations throughout her career. Her teaching of constitutional law is interactive and engaging as she seeks to connect with each student.
A stimulating discussion and gaining insights during learning are cornerstones of her classrooms. Professor Murray believes in creating a personal experience for students, staying in contact with many students throughout their degree and beyond. She believes UWA’s Law School is a place where the love of the law filters through everything we do.
Professor Murray's areas of teaching expertise include Constitutional Law (especially Chapter III, referendums and electoral research), Foundation of Public Law, and Court Innovation and Court Reform.