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Meet the Chambers UK Bar Editorial Team

The Chambers UK Bar team bring a wealth of skills and experience from a wide range of backgrounds to assist UK chambers, sets and silks partnering with Chambers.

Published on 9 May 2022
Written by James Cowdell, Sam Williamson, Cavan Ferguson, Rebecca Patton
Rebecca Patton
James Cowdell
Sam Williamson
Cavan Ferguson

Delivering the most comprehensive research and analysis

The Chambers UK bar editorial team deliver unparalleled depth and breadth of research on legal rankings and market insights. They produce recommendations on sets of chambers and individual barristers across the United Kingdom.  

The team comprises of three research managers and one head of research with diverse professional and academic backgrounds. You can learn more about the Team, their research and how they can assist by reading their biographies below. 

Connect with the UK Bar Research and Editorial Team

James Cowdell - Head of UK Bar Research

I joined Chambers and Partners in November 2000 and have spent the vast majority of my time in the company as Head of Research of the UK Bar Guide. Prior to joining Chambers, I studied Modern History at Queen's College, University of Oxford, before moving to London to read for the Bar. I worked for a number of years as a criminal barrister and following that was employed by a City law firm.  

As Head of Research of the Bar Guide since its inception, I have supervised its growth such that it now covers a host of different practice areas and industry sectors. In order to keep up with market trends and ensure the accuracy of our coverage I regularly meet with silks, juniors, clerks, marketing individuals and CEOs from chambers in both England and Scotland. I also share the supervision of a team of fifty-plus researchers with the Head of Research of the UK Solicitors Guide. Should you have any questions or would like to discuss anything with me, please do contact me at [email protected] 

Sam Williamson - Research Manager

My Chambers career began in January 2017 following completion of a Classics degree at Oxford and a year as a Choral Scholar at Truro Cathedral in Cornwall. After around 11 months of researching UK and US markets, I joined the UK Bar team as a Research Manager. 

My role is to co-ordinate the research into the practice areas for which I have oversight, managing a small team of research analysts. I also meet regularly with barristers and their clerks and marketing managers to discuss rankings and submissions. My aim is to demystify the Chambers research process and to advise practitioners wishing to make their engagement with us as efficient and fruitful as possible. 

Within the UK Bar editorial team, I have responsibility for a range of practice areas falling under the broad heading of public and human rights law. These include administrative law, civil liberties, immigration, inquests and inquiries, and professional discipline (in all UK jurisdictions). I also lead the research into employment professional negligence, competition and media law.

Other areas of focus include the regional commercial Bar, and Group Litigation, a new table for the 2022 Guide. Please get in touch at [email protected] if I can be of any assistance regarding submissions, rankings, editorial, new practice areas or any other aspect of Chambers research. 

Cavan Ferguson - Research Manager

I joined Chambers and Partners in 2020 after studying law at the University of East Anglia. Prior to becoming Research Manager on the UK Bar guide, I was a researcher on the UK/USA team.

I am responsible for overseeing research into a number of practice areas, including Financial Crime and Restructuring/Insolvency, as well as consumer law sections such as Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury. I meet with marketing managers and clerks to discuss the work undertaken by barristers and their views on the legal market, ensuring our guide remains up to date and accurate.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Rebecca Patton - Research Manager

I joined Chambers in November 2020 as a Research Analyst for the UK/US team researching Real Estate, Health and Data Privacy, among other things, and then became a Senior Research Analyst in January 2022 before taking on a secondment as a Research Manager on the UK Bar Team in April 2022. I am currently responsible for overseeing the research on such areas as Pensions, Real estate and Banking and Finance.

I studied Journalism at Staffordshire University and have worked as a journalist on pharmaceutical and employee benefits business to business publications and continued to work in this field as a freelance journalist after having my two children.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to get in touch.

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