Chris Willmore's current research is into the relationships between land use planning, environmental law and the regulation of land ownership and use, particularly in an international and comparative context with a focus upon climate change. She is part of the Cabot Institute, the University Institute designed to bring together interdisciplinary teams to tackle global challenges including climate change.
This particular area of work at present comes from her longstanding engagement with the law-science discourse: questions of communication, control and engagement between law and science, whether in terms of forensic science (she was principal investigator on the Royal Commission on Criminal Justice Report on Expert Witnesses in 1993) or in terms of the identification of regulatory tools and economic instruments to achieve land use or environmental objectives. She is particularly interested in how evidence of climate change from scientific research is paraphrased or distorted when translated into regulatory or public policy statements.
Recent work has included a paper and article at an international conference of property lawyers looking at the way states use their land holding to seek to achieve sustainable development goals; and articles looking at the problems for the UK in seeking to use the powers associated with the ownership of land by public sector bodies to achieve public policy objectives.
Currently she is working on two things: the impact of land use planning policies on the conceptualisation of our archaeological past and the problems of determining social priorities in the absence of higher order social consensus / ontology , using the relationship between climate change and disability policy as her case study.
She is happy to supervise research students in planning / land use / environmental field or students wanting to pursue interdisciplinary work in relation to these fields and climate change.