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In the last three years, more than 100 miscarriages of justice have been quashed following CCRC referrals
The first step in challenging a conviction or sentence is typically applying directly to the Appeal Courts. If that has been unsuccessful (or if you pleaded guilty in a Magistrates' Court), you can apply for a CCRC review of your case.
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Final call for research proposals to the CCRC – deadline for entries 11 September 2023

The CCRC is the body that investigates possible miscarriages of justice.

If you have an idea for academic research that you think would benefit the CCRC and the wider criminal justice system, it’s not too late to submit your research proposal to the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC).

You still have until 11 September to send your project proposal to our Research Committee.

Projects can be of any length and on any subject provided the research is of arguable benefit to the CCRC and to the wider criminal justice system. Any proposal must be at PhD level or above and the CCRC is unable to offer funding.

Successful researchers will be given access to unique data relating to CCRC applications to review convictions and/or sentences. We can also provide contact details for sources of data, support for funding applications, and publication of resulting work on our website and more widely.

A CCRC spokesman said: “The CCRC seeks to stimulate serious independent academic research that will benefit the criminal justice system.

“Past research projects have looked at subjects including the potential impact of legal aid cuts and the criminalisation of refugees, and current research includes work on digital evidence, human trafficking, and the experiences of applicants to the CCRC.

“We have some suggestions for potential areas of research, but we welcome any proposal that might fit our criteria.”

The final deadline for the submission of an initial proposal is close of business on Monday 11 September 2023. Successful applicants will then be asked to submit a full proposal.

Please email proposals to:

Further details can be found on the CCRC website and an information leaflet is also available.

Notes to editors

  1.  The CCRC is an independent body set up under the Criminal Appeal Act 1995. It is responsible for independently reviewing suspected and alleged miscarriages of criminal justice in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It is based in Birmingham and is funded by the Ministry of Justice.  
  2. There are currently 11 Commissioners who bring to the CCRC considerable experience from a wide variety of backgrounds. Commissioners are appointed by the monarch on the recommendation of the Prime Minister in accordance with the Office for the Commissioner for Public Appointments’ Code of Practice.  
  3. The CCRC usually receives around 1,400 applications for reviews (convictions and/or sentences) each year. Since starting work in 1997, the CCRC has referred around 3% of applications to the appeal courts.  
  4. The CCRC considers whether, as a result of new evidence or argument, there is a real possibility that the conviction would not be upheld were a reference to be made. New evidence or argument is argument or evidence which has not been raised during the trial or on appeal.  Applicants should usually have appealed first. A case can be referred in the absence of new evidence or argument or an earlier appeal only if there are “exceptional circumstances”.  
  5. If a case is referred, it is then for the appeal court to decide whether the conviction is unsafe or the sentence unfair.  
  6. More details about the role and work of the Criminal Cases Review Commission can be found at The CCRC can be found on Twitter @ccrcupdate and Instagram the_ccrc