Adjunct Staff

Dr Howard Bell, OAM

Dip Law (1985), LL.M (1989), Cert IV (TAE) (2000), PhD (Syd) (2004), Grad Dip Res Mgmt (2005), Cert IV in WHS (2015), Spec Acc (Govt and Admin Law) 2016

Adjunct Senior Lecturer
off campus


Howard is a legal practitioner and currently a principal lawyer with the NSW Department of Customer Service with special interest in regulatory legal practice and in administrative law. He previously worked as a senior legal officer at NSW Police and the NSW Crime Commission. Prior to that he was self-employed as a barrister-at-law.

Howard is also currently serving Major in Australian Army Reserve. He has served as a military lawyer, appeared as counsel before courts-martial, a military policeman and served as Officer Commanding, The Second Military Police Company. He has been an instructor, career advisor, staff officer and a governance and compliance auditor. In 2002 he deployed on operational service to East Timor as part of a multinational peacekeeping force.

He is a keen community volunteer and was in 2011 a recipient of the Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for services to the community through social justice and legal organisations.


Howard has supervised postgraduate doctoral students in areas which include public safety, counter-insurgency, counter-terrorism and peace studies. He has previously lectured and tutored undergraduate students in criminal law. Howard has lectured at the NSW Police Academy in criminal law and procedure as well as teaching military law and justice at Army training establishments.

Howard  has also designed, presented and delivered community education courses in business law, criminal justice and forensic science through the Centre for Continuing Education at the University of Sydney.

For over 25 years Howard was also a part time teacher at TAFE NSW where he taught law, management, team leadership, customer service and business studies. More recently he has designed, delivered, presented and continues to present community education courses in human rights, social justice, climate change and environmental law at Workers Education Association-Sydney (WEA-Sydney). Howard has served on the Council and the Board of Directors at WEA-Sydney.


Howard’s earlier career before law was in the scientific fields and in the chemical industry. His main initial research interests were in the forensic science fields during his years of private practice at the criminal Bar and later when working with NSW Police. As a post graduate student in law at the University of Sydney’s Law School, Howard won the H.J McLemmens Award for postgraduate students in criminology.

Howard’s PhD thesis was based on field work he undertook in relation to jury trials in which he studied the dynamics associated with socio-legal influences on juror impression formation in the criminal courts. This has formed the basis of a number of post-doctoral papers he has presented at legal, justice and multi-disciplinary conferences both locally and overseas. Howard is currently engaged in researching law reform options across a number of human rights and social justice fields including the case for a human rights act in Australia and on potential therapeutic jurisprudence-based models for the development of a homelessness court system.

Conference Papers and Articles

Bell, Howard (2021) "The human right to shelter: can the law help?"

Bell, Howard (2015) “Impression formation by Jurors in Criminal Trials”: A paper presented to the Congress of the European Association of Psychology and Law, Nuremberg, Germany, July 2015.

Bell, Howard (2013) “Workplace Bullying” A paper presented to the Australian and New Zealand Association of Psychology and Law, Adelaide, October 2013.

Bell, Howard (2011) “Applications of Case Management, Risk Assessment, Story Telling and game Theory in Human Rights and Criminal Justice: lessons from the forensic arena, the conciliation table and peacekeeping theatre” A paper for presentation at the Working Within the Forensic Paradigm Conference, Prato, Italy, September 2011.

Bell, Howard (2011) “Perceptions of Hostility: lessons from courts, expert evidence, conciliation and peacemaking: implications for human rights and conflict resolution” A paper presented at the Australian Psychological Society Forensic Psychology Conference, Noosa, 5 August 2011.

Bell, Howard (2010) “Peace and Human Rights Compliance: perceptions, illusions and realities: towards a universal template for peace on Earth” A paper presented to the Armidale Peace Conference, 18 September 2010.

Bell, Howard (2010) “Perceptions of Dangerousness: lessons from courts, jurors, expert evidence, conciliation and peace making: implications for human rights” a paper presented to the  Congress of the Australian and New Zealand Association of Psychology, Psychiatry and Law, Gold Coast, October 2010.

Bell, Howard (2009) “Justice, Peace and Human Rights Compliance: towards a universal template for social justice”: a paper presented to the Towards Restorative Justice Conference, University of Sydney, December 2009.

Bell, Howard (2008) “Impressions, Illusions and Rhetoric: global governance and peace” Paper presented to the Australian and New Zealand Association of Psychology, Psychiatry and the Law Congress, 2008, Sydney.

Bell, Howard (2008) Director, “Pairs of Pears: a pathway to civilization”, Short film made for Tropfest 2008, a film on human rights, social justice and environmental issues.

Bell, Howard (2007) “Legal Support to Social Justice” - Government Lawyer, June 2007.

Bell, Howard (2006) “The Government Legal Care Handbook”- Government Lawyer April 2006.

Bell, Howard (2005) “Caring for Governments: the Capability-Based Case for a Client-Care Template” Government Lawyer April 2005

Bell, Dr. Howard (2004) “Case Management, Style and Status Influencing Impressions Formed by Jurors in Criminal Trials: the case for judicial intervention and standards of best practice”. Paper presented to the Third Australasian Jury Conference, Melbourne University Law School, November 2004.

Bell, Howard (2004) “Work Place Bullying: An Impressionistic Perspective” Paper presented to the Government Legal Head’s Forum, Law Society of New South Wales, 15 October 2004.

Bell, Howard (2003) “Customer Satisfaction in Government Legal Services” Government Lawyer, Volume 27 May 2003

Bell, Howard (2003) “Pacific Rim Best Practice Community: towards global benchmarking in Government Law” Government Lawyer, Volume 26 January 2003

Bell, Major Howard (2002) “Twenty Days in East Timor: Reflections of a Reservist” Pointsman July 2002, Page 27.

Bell, Major H. C. (2001) “The Crossed Swords, the Crown and Laurel Wreath, the Steady Influence of Scarlet: Problem Solving, Force Enhancement and Task Ownership”, Pointsman, Summer 2001 Edition, Page 1.

Bell, Major H. C. (2001) “Capability Bricks: The New Best Practice Factor in Military Policing” Pointsman, The Official Publication of the Royal Australian Corps of Military Police, Winter 2001 Edition, Page 35.

Bell, H. (2001) “The Power, the Restraint and the Damages: Exploring Wrongful Arrest and False Imprisonment” Journal of Policing Issues, November 2001

Bell, H. (2000) “Courtroom Drama” Law Society Journal, NSW Law Society, Vol 38 No. 1 February 2000, at page 20.

Bell, H. C. (1999) “Influences of Case Presentation Strategies and Advocacy Styles on Impression Formation By Jurors in Criminal Trials” Paper presented to the Seventh International Criminal Law Congress, Coolum, Queensland, September 1999.

Bell, H.C. (1994) “Filters to the Captive Audience: A study of the fuller spectrum of factors affecting the scientific evidence influencing jurors in criminal trials” Paper presented to the 12th Australian and New Zealand International Symposium on the Forensic Sciences, Auckland, New Zealand, November 1994.

Bell, H.C. (1993) “Beyond Reasonable Influence: towards measurement and control of admissibility, privilege, forensic performance and adversarial influence” Paper presented to Conference on Law, Medicine and Criminal Justice, Australian Institute of Criminology, Surfers Paradise, Queensland, July 1993.

Bell, H.C. (1992) “Beyond Reasonable Influence” Paper presented to the International Symposium of the Australian and New Zealand Forensic Science Society, Hobart, August 1992.

Bell, Howard. (1987) Lecture Demonstrations in Chemistry Autumn 1987, video and supporting procedures manual, School of Chemistry, University of Sydney and University Television Service.


Howard is an active member of the Law Society of NSW. He is Accredited by the Law Society as a Specialist in Government and Administrative Law. He has served on a number of committees of the Law Society including the Anti-Discrimination Committee, the Human Rights Committee and the Public Law Committee. He has also served as a mentor in the Law Society’s mentoring programs. He currently sits as a member of the Government Lawyers’ Committee of the Law Society.

Howard has served on the NSW Regional Board of Amnesty International as well has having been the Convenor of his local community action group within Amnesty International.

He has also volunteered extensively with other community groups including the Society of St Vincent de Paul, Cana Communities and Shelter NSW. He has served as a member of the Board of Cana Communities and also on the Board of Shelter NSW.

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