Dr Abi Adams

Access to Justice and the Economics of the Rule of Law

6th March 12.30-2.00pm

Education Department, Seminar room E (above the cafe), 15 Norham Gardens, OX2 6PY

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dr abi adams

I am an Associate Professor in Economics at the University of Oxford in association with New College and a Research Fellow at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, London.

In 2016, I was awarded an ESRC Future Research Leaders grant, which will fund work on modelling choice behaviour when a) not all options are available and b) individuals have a ‘preference for flexibility’. I hope to apply this research to better understand the role of Zero Hours Contracts in the UK labour market.


My research develops new ways of bringing economic models of decision-making to data in a flexible, yet theory–consistent, manner. Recent work includes articles in the American Economic Review, the Economic Journal, and the Modern Law Review. My applied research includes work on access to justice and the economic incentives to bring claims to Employment Tribunals, an investigation into the UK’s “Cost of Living Crisis” and its implications for poverty measurement, and an on-going project on ‘gig-economy’ employment.

 https://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/faculty/abi-adams https://abiadams.com/


Winner – ESRC Celebrating Impact Prize 2018, Outstanding Impact in Public policy

Research by Dr Adams was instrumental in advocates’ cases for the Supreme Court's removal of employment tribunal fees. Through a novel analysis based on economic and legal expertise, Dr Adams showed that the cost of bringing a claim outweighed the potential benefit in many cases. The research findings were published in Modern Law Review and the article was highlighted as a contribution to the Supreme Court verdict in a House of Commons research briefing. Dr Adams has collaborated with the United Nations' International Labour Organization to look at using the model to evaluate the impact of similar reforms worldwide, starting in Brazil. https://esrc.ukri.org/news-events-and-publications/impact-case-studies/research-led-to-supreme-court-ruling-on-removal-of-employment-tribunal-fees/