Professor Peter Whelan is a Professor of Law at the School of Law, University of Leeds, where he is the Deputy Director of the Centre for Criminal Justice Studies.
Peter holds both a Degree in Law and French and a Master of Laws from Trinity College Dublin. During his primary degree, he spent a university year studying French law at the Université de Poitiers, France. He came first overall in his class in his Senior Freshman year at Trinity. Peter also holds a PhD in Law from St John's College, University of Cambridge. Peter is a US Attorney-at-Law and a registered member of the New York State Bar.
Prior to taking up his current position, Peter was a Senior Lecturer in Law at the UEA Law School, University of East Anglia and was a Faculty Member of the ESRC Centre for Competition Policy. Before moving to UEA, Peter worked in New York City and in the People's Republic of China. For a number of years he was also the Research Fellow in Competition Law at the British Institute of International and Comparative Law (BIICL) in London. In addition to conducting competition law research for BIICL, he also provided training in EU competition law to various consumer organisations across 14 EU Member States. Peter was also a Research Assistant (to Professor Sciarra) at the University of Cambridge and was the Managing Editor of the Cambridge Student Law Review.
Peter has taught a wide variety of legal subjects including competition law, tort law, contract law, criminal law, EU law, legal skills and US law. His research focuses primarily on competition law issues. In particular, he researches cartels, competition enforcement mechanisms, the objectives of competition law, legal regulation of distribution systems, the rights of the defence, and antitrust criminalisation.
Peter has published widely in specialist competition law journals (in the US and in Europe) as well as in generalist law journals (including Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, Cambridge Law Journal and Modern Law Review). In 2009, Peter won the ‘Reddy Charlton McKnight Prize for Legal Scholarship', which was awarded by the Trinity College Law Review. In 2014, he was shortlisted by the Institute of Competition Law for an Antitrust Writing Award.
Peter's work on antitrust criminalisation has also received judicial endorsement: his published research was quoted with approval by Mr Justice McKechnie in the Central Criminal Court (High Court) in Dublin in the leading Irish criminal cartel case of DPP v. Duffy and Duffy Motors (Newbridge) Ltd  IEHC 208. In December 2017, his book on cartel criminalisation was relied upon and cited in a judgment rendered by the Competition Tribunal of Chile: Judgment No. 160/2017.
To date, Peter's research has been cited in over 300 different publications. It has been relied upon by the Australian Senate (in an official report), the Swiss Competition Commission (in an antitrust decision), the Finnish Competition Authority, the International Competition Network, researchers at the Dutch Competition Authority, the (then) Chairman of the UK Competition Commission (in two policy speeches), the Chairman of the New Zealand Commerce Commission (in a report for the American Bar Association), the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (in a submission to Parliament), the Federation of German Consumer Organisations (in a submission to the European Commission), UNCTAD, legal counsel at the Competition Commission of South Africa, the Research Office of the Danish Ministry of Justice, the Competition Committee of the OECD and researchers in the Competition Commission of India and the Ministry of Economic Development in New Zealand.
In November 2012, Peter presented oral evidence to the Commerce Committee of the New Zealand Parliament on Clause 18 of their Commerce (Cartels and Other Matters) Amendment Bill. In November 2013 he was appointed as an 'International Expert' by the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority to advise it on the desirability of introducing criminal cartel sanctions in Finland. He presented his final report to the Finnish Ministry of Employment and the Economy in May 2014.
In Bucharest in October 2014, Peter provided training in competition law to a variety of judges from different levels of the Romanian judicial system. Peter is currently a Non-Governmental Advisor to the International Competition Network. In 2018 at the Supreme Court of Latvia, he participated in a roundtable discussion with the Chief Justice of Latvia and a number of senior judges which focused on his research on cartel enforcement. In April 2018, in Santiago, he delivered lectures on his research at both the National Economic Prosecutor’s Office of Chile and the Competition Tribunal of Chile.
Peter regularly presents his research at home and abroad. For example, he has delivered guest lectures at the University of Oxford, the University of Cambridge, University College London, Queen's University Belfast, Strathclyde University, City University, Hong Kong University, the University of Bergen (Norway), the Latvian Law Institute (Riga, Latvia), the University of Tel Aviv (Israel), the University of Warsaw (Poland), the Institute of International Trade and Law (Moscow), Istanbul Bilgi University (Turkey), Pázmány Péter Catholic University (Budapest, Hungary), NALSAR (Hyderabad), Christ University (Bangalore) and National Law School of India University. He has presented papers at a number of prestigious conferences, including in Canada, Chile, China, Finland, France, Germany, Holland, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Norway, Peru, Portugal, Romania, South Africa, Spain, and at the Competition Appeal Tribunal in London. He has also been a participant at the by-invite only annual symposium on antitrust enforcement held in Washington DC, which is organised by the Journal of Antitrust Enforcement. He has presented his research at both the Annual Conference and the Annual Cartel Workshop of the International Competition Network. He has also also delivered keynote addresses at competition law conferences in the Netherlands and Chile, at the Competition Authority of Kenya in Nairobi, and at the Peruvian competition authority in Lima.
Peter recently completed a monograph analysing the theoretical, legal and practical challenges of European antitrust criminalisation, which was published by Oxford University Press as part of their series Oxford Studies in European Law.
Peter is currently writing a monograph on parental liability in EU competition law; it will be published in due course by Oxford University Press.
Peter is the Managing Editor of Oxford Competition Law, an innovative online national competition law case-reporting service operated by OUP which became available in 2013. He is a member of the Editorial Boards of five journals: World Competition; Journal of Antitrust Enforcement; New Journal of European Criminal Law; Romanian Competition Journal; and Journal of Financial Crime.
He is an Associate Member of the Centre for Competition Policy. He is also a peer-reviewer of grant applications under the Newton Fund of the British Council. In 2017 he was appointed as an Assessor (peer-reviewer) of grant applications to both the Australian Research Council and the Irish Research Council. In 2018 he was appointed as a Member of the Outer International Assessment Board for the Government of Ireland's Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme. He has also acted as an external reviewer of grant applications for the National Science Centre, one of Poland’s main research councils.
Peter has reviewed articles for Modern Law Review, European Competition Law Review, European Competition Journal, European Law Review, Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal, Irish Journal of European Law, Journal of Competition Law and Economics, Regulation and Governance, and Melbourne Journal of International Law. He is also a peer-reviewer of (law) book proposals for Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, Routledge, and Pearson UK.
In 2015, Peter was a co-investigator on the project ‘EU Social and Labour Rights under Internal Market Law’, which was funded by the European Parliament to the tune of €118,000 (Reference: IP/A/EMPL/ST/2014-02). He has also worked on competition law projects for DG Sanco (European Commission), Consumers International, British Telecom, the Competition Committee of the OECD, and the British Brands Group.
For four years Peter acted as an external examiner for seven law modules on the LLB and LLM programmes at Newcastle Law School, the University of Newcastle. In 2013 Peter was a Visiting Professor at the Institute of International Trade and Law in Moscow, Russia. Peter is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
Peter is an elected member of the Council of the Society of Legal Scholars (‘SLS’). He also sits on the Research Grants Committee of the SLS. He is also a Member of the Academic Society for Competition Law.
In 2017, Peter was appointed to the Judging Panel of the Undergraduate Awards, the world’s largest international academic awards programme that acknowledges the brightest and most innovative undergraduate students.
Within the University of Leeds, he is a member of the following: the Senate; the Court; the ESSL Faculty Forum; and the REF Reading Group, School of Law. In previous years he was a member of: the Examinations Group of the University’s Graduate Board (2015-2017); the ESSL Faculty Board (2015-2018); the ESSL Graduate School Committee (2015-2017); the School Management Team, School of Law (2015-2017); and the Research Committee, School of Law (2014-2017).
Peter currently supervises seven full-time PhD students: Ilaria Zavoli (international criminal law); Magali Eben (competition law); John Gannon (competition law); Omar Mashjari (competition law); Khaled AlRashidi (corruption); and Zeynab Malakoutikhah (terrorist financing).
To date he has supervised three PhD students to completion and has acted as an examiner for a variety of PhD and MA theses, at both home and abroad.