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Dr Francine Baker

I have been involved with the Open University since 2007 in various capacities. I currently enjoy teaching 1st, 2nd and third year OU modules concerning an introduction to the law, Tort, Contract, Land Law, Property and Equity Law as well as Environmental and Space Law.  My background includes a long career starting as a Barrister and Solicitor in Australia from 1991, and then as a practising Solicitor of England and Wales since 2004. My experience has focused on civil law, contentious and non-contentious, including Property Law, Planning, Environmental and Construction Law. I have had charge of dispute resolution and litigation departments for High St firms, obtained a wide range of advocacy experience with private firms and local & national government authorities, and for clients including major listed commercial companies and high net worth individuals. 

My experience with professional bodies, and a range of universities (including the University of Reading and Oxford Brooked University) whether part time or full time, has involved the teaching, creation, management & accreditation of UG and PG modules and degree courses (including as the Director of a UG Quantity Surveying & Commercial Management and of a PG International Construction Law & Dispute Resolution courses) and of overseas franchises, since 2006. My academic experience has also included dissertation supervision. I have also been an External Examiner of university courses, and a member of university ethics, research, and academic committees. I have also been a member of international scientific committees and Industry scholarship committees, mentored industry professionals, and am currently an Examiner for Chartered Institute of Civil Engineering Surveyors, and on the Editorial Panel of the Management Procurement and the Law Journal for the Institute of Civil Engineers.  

Although a longtime reviewer of papers for various academic journals, I also enjoy engaging in my own research. My latest book, an Emerald publication called Environmental Law for Sustainable Construction will be formally launched on 25 September 2023. Other recent papers include:

  • 2022 Baker, F., Intern. J. of Energy Prod. & Mgmt., Vol. 7, No. 2 (2022) "Is the United Kingdom’s hydrogen strategy an effective low carbon strategy?" ISSN: 2056-3280 (on line) ISSN: 2056-3272 (paper)
  • 2019 Baker, F., ‘A Sustainable Approach To The Governance of Waste Management’: Waste Management and the Environment IX Ed: Riegos, F. A. Ortega; Lega, M., Itoh,H. ISBN: 978-1-78466-297-4 eISBN: 978-1-78466-298-1
  • 2018 ‘A Sustainable Approach to EIR using BIM: Applying the BIM Protocol’, Heritage BIM, 2018, Bath, UK
  • 2016 ”To Follow Or Not To Follow Design Standards: A Question For Sustainable Coastal Engineering” CIB World Building Congress 2016 proceedings.

Choosing to work for the Open University was not a difficult decision. The Open University provides a flexible means of teaching and learning coupled with an inclusive and caring environment for students and teachers, that is unique. The pleasure of engaging with a diverse and fascinating range of students is a bonus!