English legal scholarship has initially been confi ned to the accurate exposition of judicial decisions and was consequently held in low esteem by judges. It was not until the expansion of law schools in the 1960s that an imaginative and critical form of legal research established itself. In the 1980s and 1990s, it became common for a number of appeal judges to refer to academic commentary in their decisions, although for the most part citation served only as a substitute for referring to the cases themselves. At the same time, English legal academics became increasingly involved in legal practice, both as part-time barristers and judges. However, since the 1990s, a number of prominent law teachers have developed various new approaches to legal research (taxonomy, interpretive legal theory, rights-based analysis) which aim at challenging established legal doctrines and try to offer a radical reinterpretation of the case law – research that judges find rather unhelpful in their everyday work.