Model of human brain

Building a fairer justice system

Professionals discussing a case at a laptop in an office
We can create a fairer justice system for all by understanding how we think

Much of human life, including our legal system, hinges on asking – and answering – big questions. Are gaps in a witness’s memory normal, or a cause for suspicion? Can we objectively measure how much pain someone is in after an accident? Questions like these on how humans think, feel and behave (known as neuroscience) are increasingly being raised.

To provide answers, The Open University’s Paul Catley and Dr Lisa Claydon, are undertaking vital research into how our understanding of the brain affects justice. Their aim is to create the UK’s first dedicated Centre for Law and Neuroscience, a pioneering resource for lawyers, scientists and, vitally, society as a whole. 

The centre will deliver everything from cutting-edge research that will influence policy makers and governments to the latest teaching methods and materials for legal professionals. We will make the implications of neuroscience research open to everyone, through free open education resources in free online courses and papers. With your support, we can ensure that everyone has access to a fair and well-informed justice system.

Changing lives through education and more

Our research and education projects bring immeasurable benefits to so many lives, and we rely on the generosity of our donors for all of them. We’re already making a difference worldwide – but we have the potential to do even more. Each of our projects falls into one of four strands; opening up minds, opportunities, thinking and lives. 

Opportunities
Harnessing the full potential of our disabled veterans
Five members of the RAF
146
Lives
Join a movement of millions
Females studying at desk
126
Opportunities
Scholarships that defy expectations
Open University graduate celebrating her achievement with arms in the air
90
Opportunities
Rewriting the future, blink by blink
Open University graduate with a disability receiving his degree
85
Thinking
Sniffing out cancer
Cancer detection dog with white stripe on face looking into camera
96
Minds
Leading a new learning revolution
Looking at the OpenLearn website on a tablet
98
Minds
Sharing 50 years of education
Professor Wilson tutoring with The Open University
91
Thinking
A helping paw
Dog in training session
84
Opportunities
Helping offenders prepare for life after prison
Female student with study book
87
Lives
Bringing lessons to life across India
Pupils in classroom in India
89
Thinking
Helping stroke survivors walk tall
Prototype haptic bracelet
94
Lives
Sharing life-saving skills in developing countries
Smiling mother carrying baby in Africa
92
Opportunities
Using more minds to make discoveries in STEM
Female science researcher with lab equipment at The Open University
93
Lives
Creating an education revolution
Felicia, a teacher who uses the TESSA programme, with her pupils in Ghana
86
Minds
Building a fairer justice system
Model of human brain
88
Thinking
Helping people with dementia stay independent
Retail worker advising older customer
97
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