skip to navigation skip to content

Simon Deakin

Simon Deakin

Director of the Centre for Business Research (CBR)
Fellow (Economics & Policy)

Fellow of Peterhouse

MA, PhD (University of Cambridge)

Research interests

The study of corporate governance from an interdisciplinary and comparative perspective; economic and sociological theories of law; empirical studies of the effects of legal change; doctrinal legal analysis in the areas of company, employment and private law; relations between shareholders and directors; human resource management and employment contracting; inter-firm relations; corporate insolvency; corporate social responsibility.

Simon Deakin is a member of the Economics & Policy subject group.

Professional experience

Professor Deakin is the Director of the Centre for Business Research (CBR), as well as a Yorke Professorial Research Fellow at the Faculty of Law at Cambridge. He specialises in the economics of law and empirical legal studies, with particular reference to labour law, private law, and corporate governance. He is a Fellow of the British Academy and has received the ECGI and Allen & Overy prizes for his research on corporate governance. He has carried out consultancy and contract research for numerous governments, international organisations, companies, business associations, trade unions and NGOs. He has acted as a consultant for a number of transnational organisations, national governments, corporate clients, and trade unions. Between 1999 and 2001 he provided research and advice for the DTI-sponsored Company Law Review in the UK and in 2002 he contributed to the work of the World Commission on the Social Dimension of Globalisation established by the International Labour Organisation. He is a founder member of the Institute of Employment Rights, London, and a member of its executive committee. In 2002 he became a member of the Independent Commission of Inquiry into Drug Testing at Work, supported by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. Professor Deakin is one of the editors of the British Journal of Industrial Relations.

Previous appointments

Prior to taking up his current position, Professor Deakin taught in the Faculty of Law at Cambridge for 11 years, where he is still Yorke Professorial Research Fellow. He has also taught in the Universities of Chicago, London, Nantes and Melbourne. In 1994 Simon Deakin was one of a number of Cambridge-based academics who set up the Centre for Business Research (CBR), of which he is now Director.


Adams, Z., and Deakin, S. (2015) “Quantitative labour law.” In: Ludlow, A. and Blackham, A. (eds.) New frontiers in empirical labour law research. Oxford: Hart.

Hamilton, J. and Deakin, S. (2015) “Russia’s legal transitions: Marxist theory, neoclassical economics and the rule of law.” Hague Journal of the Rule of Law, 7(2): 283-307 (DOI: 10.1007/s40803-015-0012-8)

Deakin, S., Fraser Butlin, S., McLaughlin, C. and Polanska, A. (2014) “Are litigation and collective bargaining complements or substitutes for achieving gender equality? A study of the British Equal Pay Act.” Cambridge Journal of Economics, 39(2): 381-403 (DOI: 10.1093/cje/bev006)

Chen, D. and Deakin, S. (2014) “On heaven’s lathe: state, rule of law, and economic development.” Law and Development Review, 8(1): 123-145 (DOI: 10.1515/ldr-2014-0031)

Deakin, S., Malmberg, J. and Sarkar, P. (2014) “How do labour laws affect unemployment and the labour share of national income? The experience of six OECD countries, 1970-2010.” International Labour Review, 153(1): 1-27 (DOI: 10.1111/j.1564-913X.2014.00195.x)

Buchanan, J., Chai, D.H. and Deakin, S. (2014) “Empirical analysis of legal institutions and institutional change: multiple-methods approaches and their application to corporate governance research.” Journal of Institutional Economics, 10(1): 1-20 (DOI: 10.1017/S1744137413000349)

News & insight

Lebanese health

Lebanon's health services should be given far greater priority in economic recovery policies by donor governments, says new report co-authored at the…

Read more

Governing catastrophes

Re-learning how to manage risk can be a template for the future governance of crises, say academics from the Centre for Business…

Read more

Joint research project on legal systems and AI selected for funding by UKRI and JST

A research project on legal systems and artificial antelligence (AI), based on collaboration between Hitotsubashi University, Japan, and the University of Cambridge,…

Read more

Legislating labour in the long run

Researchers have built the single largest dataset of employment laws – spanning more than 100 countries across much of post-war history –…

Read more

The future of manufacturing

Launch of final project report from the Foresight Lead Expert Group Professor Alan Hughes was a member of the Lead Expert Group…

Read more

Continuity and change at the Centre for Business Research

After nearly 20 years as Director of the Centre for Business Research (CBR), Professor Alan Hughes is standing down from this position,…

Read more

Centre for Business Research (CBR) news from 2011

UK~IRC Innovation Summit 2011 – Growing through Innovation 26 November 2011 The Innovation Summit, UK~IRC's annual one day conference for practitioners, policy-makers…

Read more

Centre for Business Research (CBR) news from 2010

Professor Hughes re-appointed as member to the Prime Minister's Council for Science and Technology 16 December 2010 The Prime Minister today re-appointed…

Read more

Centre for Business Research (CBR) news from 2009

22,000 academics speak: results from the largest survey of academics 20 October 2009 On 20 October 2009 the UK Innovation Research Centre…

Read more

Centre for Business Research (CBR) news from 2005

The Wal-Mart model: is it sustainable? 1 December 2005 Wal-Mart has just been the subject of a week of events in the…

Read more

Centre for Business Research (CBR) news from 2003

Learning from Enron; what makes entrepreneurs tick; and the saga of Britain's managerial skills shortage… 17 October 2003 Why we might be…

Read more

Centre for Business Research (CBR) news from 2002

The Cambridge Seminar on Financial Regulation 25-27 September 2002 The seminar brought together senior bank regulators from South East Asia to discuss…

Read more

Contact details

Simon Deakin
Centre for Business Research
Cambridge Judge Business School
University of Cambridge
Trumpington Street
Cambridge CB2 1AG

Tel: +44 (0)1223 765339

[email protected]