Skip to content


Centre for Business and Insolvency Law

Unit(s) of assessment: Law

School: Nottingham Law School


Welcome to the Centre for Business and Insolvency Law. The Centre drives Nottingham Law School's excellence and innovation in the fields of both business and insolvency law. It was established in 2008 and its fields of research have been considerably widened in order to encourage the participation of as many staff members as possible. It includes an Intellectual Property Research Group.


The mission of the Centre is to pursue and encourage innovative scholarship and research in the fields of business and insolvency law, on both a national and international level.

Aims of the centre

The aims of the centre are to:

  • Contribute to national and international debates through engaging in dynamic and internationally relevant research
  • Collaborate with both government and non-government organisations, other higher education institutions, individual academics at other higher education institutions and professional member organisations in broadening the scope of academic endeavour, and to transfer knowledge beyond the academic sector
  • Participate in debates on law reform and policy development at both national and international levels
  • Organise conferences, seminars, workshops and colloquia at various levels, and to promote collaborative engagement in large-scale and long-term research projects
  • Act as a supportive and collaborative forum for research, and encourage and foster the participation of early career researchers and postgraduate students.


The internal membership of the Centre consists of Nottingham Law School staff who are active in the field of business and insolvency law. The Centre's current external membership consists of a number of distinguished professionals, all of whom hold appointments as visiting or honorary professors at Nottingham Law School. For a full list of the members of the centre, see the Staff Profiles section below.

News and events

News and events in 2021

Congratulations to former LLM student Michelle Okyere on the publication of her article with Janice Denoncourt on Protecting Ghana’s intellectual property rights in kente textiles: the case for Geographical Indications. Read the full article.

Thanks to our Visiting Professor Dominik Skauradszun on two excellent guest LLM seminars. Dominik is a Professor at Fulda University and he has been a guest lecturer at NTU in previous years.

We are looking forward to the Centre's inaugural conference on the Intersection of Corporate Law and Technology, which will be held online on 17 and 18 June 2021.

News and events in 2020

    NLS LLM Student Visits the WIPO Library in Geneva to further her research

    Nottingham Law School, alumna, Michelle Nkansah Abena Okyere was awarded a High Distinction for her LLM thesis, “Protecting Intellectual Property Rights in Ghana’s Kente: The Case for Geographical Indications” supervised by Associate Professor Dr Janice Denoncourt.  Michelle is a qualified Ghanaian lawyer and was inspired by staff at her law firm, Bentsi-Enchill, Letsa and Ankomah, a leading firm in Ghana ( to carry out her research. At her supervisor’s suggestion, she arranged an independent visit to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Library in Geneva to review the specialised literature in connection with her geographical indication research.  She had the honour and pleasure of meeting Professor Edward Kwakwa, Senior Director for WIPO’s Department for Traditional Knowledge and Global Challenges.  Professor Kwaka, also a Ghanaian, provided Michelle with valuable guidance and support during her WIPO Library research visit.  Michelle’s work focuses on Kente, an expression of folklore because of its correlation with Ghana’s cultural heritage which dates back over 300 years. Kente refers to colourful, handwoven strips of fabric, combined by Ghanaian weavers among certain ethnic groups and communities. Its colours and unique designs have made it the best known of all Ghanaian, and perhaps even all West African textiles. Every design and colour has a distinct name and a meaning which is characteristic of the community in which it is produced. Michelle was able to access highly relevant materials which enriched her research.

    Michelle has since applied for a Commonwealth Scholarship to study for a PhD in the UK. Her experience visiting WIPO and other international institutions such as the UN and WTO whilst on the 2019 NLS Summer School in Geneva, underpins her desire "not to settle for the world as it is, but to work for the world as it should be".

    More recently on 29 November 2020, Michelle submitted a manuscript entitled ‘Protection of Intellectual Property Rights in Ghana's Kente Textile- A case for Geographical Indications’ co-authored with Dr Denoncourt to the Journal of Intellectual Property Law and Practice (JIPLP) for publication in their forthcoming special issue on geographical indications (GI).   The new article is timely, given that the African Union and European Union have recently developed and desire to implement a continental strategy for developing GIs in food and non-food products in Africa (AU-EU Continental Strategy).  The article provides a preliminary analysis of how kente, could potentially be registered as a GI. The manuscript presents the link between kente and the Ghanaian communities in which it is produced, which qualifies it to be registered as a Ghanaian GI. It also provides a critical analysis of the misappropriation of the kente cloth by third parties and other countries such as People Republic of China, as well as the need for a more comprehensive form of intellectual property right (IPR) protection for kente, due to the inadequacies of its current IPR protection system. The article is important as it presents the EU’s contribution to the development of GIs in Africa and advocates for the comprehensive IPR protection of kente through GIs and adds to the sparse literature on the GI protection of non-food products in Africa.

    Lectures on Corporate Liquidation and Cross Border Insolvency LLM modules

    In March guest lecturers Prof Dominik Skauradszun and Walter Nijnens (Fulda University) gave lectures on the Corporate Liquidation and Cross Border Insolvency LLM modules.  These were excellent sessions and they build upon the Centre’s previous associations with Dominik, who has been a visiting student and visiting scholar here in the past, and Walter, who is a graduate of the Dual LLM from NTU and Radboud University.

    Webinar: Covid-19 Implications for the Insolvency Regime

    Rebecca Parry gave a webinar Covid-19 Implications for the Insolvency Regime in the UK, Centre for Insolvency and Bankruptcy, Institute for Corporate Affairs, Government of India 24 April 2020

    Viva Success

    Emad Hosen had his PhD viva on 21 September and was awarded the degree with an outright pass.

    Sharing of IP Expertise

    In July 2020, Janice Denoncourt participated in CorporateLiveWire’s IP Round Table 2020 to share her IP expertise.  
    Janice Denoncourt, in her capacity as a Board member of the Intellectual Property Awareness Network (IPAN), co-convened an online IP teaching conference entitled, 'Online, on track: Designing IP teaching for online learning'' on 8 July 2020 with over 70 registrants.

    Partnership Conference

    The Third Annual Partnership LLP and LLC Law Conference was held online on 17 September 2020.  Congratulations to Elspeth Berry, the organiser on having attracted a range of eminent speakers and on a good level of attendance from different sectors, home and overseas.

    SLS Conference

    Martin Szarkiszjan presented a paper, "Historical Comparison of Legal Development in the United Kingdom and Japan ", based on his doctoral research, at the Society of Legal Scholars Conference on 2 September 2020.

App bulletin

Nottingham Insolvency and Business Law eJournal (NIBLeJ)

Nottingham Insolvency and Business Law eJournal (NIBLeJ) is a peer-reviewed academic journal published by the Centre for Business and Insolvency Law at the Nottingham Law School, Nottingham, the United Kingdom.

Nottingham Law Journal

Nottingham Law School publishes the Nottingham Law Journal. The journal was founded in 1977 (as the Trent Law Journal), changing to its current title in 1992. It is peer-reviewed and normally published annually.

Read our current edition and find out how to contribute

PhD Studentships

We regularly offer fully-funded PhD studentships aligned with our research centres for UK, EU or International students. Find out more about our PhD studentships.

Related staff

External members

Advisory board

Doctoral candidates

Phoebe Gatoto

Phoebe is undertaking a PhD in Law and is the holder of a Vice Chancellor’s Researcher Development Scholarship. She is carrying out an evaluation of the “long arm” approach to jurisdiction in UK and US cross-border insolvency proceedings. Her research is supervised by Rebecca Parry, Jennifer Gant and Alexandra Kastrinou.

Xiaocong Liu

Xiaocong is researching towards a PhD titled: "The Implementation of Corporate Social Responsibility of Chinese Listed Companies: A Hybrid Method of Hard Law and Soft Law". The main body of the research is the ChiNext market (NASDAQ-style) of the Shenzhen Stock Exchange,with a focus on high-Tech firms. The purpose of the study is to identify gaps and defects between hard law and soft law from the implementation of Chinese corporate social responsibility.

Martin Szarkiszjan

Martin Szarkiszjan (UK) LLB (Edin.), LLM (Nottingham Trent) is a part-time PhD student who also works at NTU with a keen interest in IP law and Japanese history, culture and language. The working title of his thesis is 'A Comparative Analysis of UK and Japanese Trade Marks'. He is supervised by Associate Professors Dr Janice Denoncourt and Dr Graham Ferris. In 2019 Martin published an article, 'Japanese trade mark law and Benrishi: preparing for Tokyo 2020' in the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (2019) ISSN 1747-15 32 and in their sister publication, Gewerblicher Rechtsschutz und Urheberrecht Internationaler (68): 1239. ISSN 0016-9420. Martin recently presented his paper 'Historical Comparison of Legal Development in the United Kingdom and Japan' in the Graduate Stream at the Society for Legal Scholars Annual Conference online in 2020.

Claire Fargeot

Claire Fargeot (UK) is studying for a Professional Doctorate and is supervised by Associate Professors Dr Janice Denoncourt and Gary Wilson. Claire is a specialist in strategy, governance, sustainability and transformational change and works with listed, as well as private and charitable organisations, to enhance value. Claire's research project is entitled, 'Professionalising directors of large and listed UK companies: ethical conduct, training and qualification'. Claire is a former head of Standards and Financial Market Integrity at CFA Institute for the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) region. Claire was responsible for leading CFA Institute efforts in advocacy, policy development, and regulatory outreach in EMEA. She is a Faculty Member of the London Stock Exchange Group Academy and is also editing a new publication entitled, 'Company Directors, 1001 questions' together with Ms Charlotte Valeur, formerly Chair of the UK Institute of Company Directors.

Stephen Gwaza

Stephen Gwaza is a graduate of the NTU LLM and a holder of a Studentship Award from NTU. He is pursuing doctoral research which evaluates the insolvency laws available to support struggling small enterprises. He is supervised by Rebecca Parry, Alex Kastrinou and Elspeth Berry.

Akrum El Menshawy

Akrum El Menshawy is a doctoral candidate researching the potential liabilities arising from faults within Unpermissioned blockchain technology. The research will seek to determine the possibility and necessity of legal redress for systematic errors within Unpermissioned blockchain technology. Akrum’s supervisory team is Rebecca Parry and Andrii Zharikov with external supervision from Mohd Hwaidi (Dundee). Akrum has completed all of his higher education studies at Nottingham Trent University and is also now teaching on the Undergraduate LLB course.