Travel and Learning Award for Nicola Taylor

Supporting Professor Nicola Taylor to present a paper at the International Society of Family Law Conference in Antwerp, to spend time working with Professor Marilyn Freeman (University of Westminster, London) and to present a one-day symposium at the Pacifica Congress in Hobart.

Borrin Foundation Travel and Learning Award

Nicola’s plan

New Zealand acceded to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction in 1991 (currently incorporated into our domestic law via the Care of Children Act (COCA) 2004). Nicola’s Travel and Learning Award is centered on three key aspects of this Convention that have received little attention to date. Firstly, Internationality, examining its compatibility with the emphasis on child participation in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). Secondly, Identity, regarding how children’s identity across the life-course is affected by their abduction and whether their Article 8 UNCRC right should be better respected in Hague Convention proceedings. Thirdly, Impact, concerning the very different approach adopted in abduction cases to that of other parental disputes decided under COCA. The focus on securing the abducted child’s prompt return to their state of habitual residence necessitates quick summary proceedings, with the substantive care/contact/relocation issues expected to be determined by the courts following the child’s return. But do these often eventuate? With parental child abduction now a global and growing phenomenon, due to increases in cross-border relationships and international migration, addressing these issues will help position New Zealand as a responsive and child-inclusive family justice leader in the abduction field.

About Nicola

Professor Nicola Taylor is Director of the Children’s Issues Centre in the Faculty of Law at the University of Otago. She teaches Family Law and is also the Alexander McMillan Leading Thinker Chair in Childhood Studies. She has qualifications in both law and social work, a PhD, and has been admitted as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand. Nicola is a leading socio-legal researcher and has undertaken many studies with children, parents and professionals on family law and children’s rights issues including post-separation care arrangements, relocation, international child abduction, children’s views and participation, child-inclusive practice, family dispute resolution, relationship property division and succession law. Her research findings have been invaluable in informing legislative, legal policy and professional practice developments within New Zealand and internationally.

Grant Amount

$10,000 + GST in 2023 to support travel

“It is a real privilege to receive an Award providing such exciting opportunities to extend my research into new areas of legal inquiry that will enhance the responsiveness of our family justice system for children experiencing international child abduction.”

– Nicola Taylor