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Global Tax 50 2016: Judith Freedman

Pinsent Masons professor of tax law, University of Oxford; general editor of the British Tax Review; founding member of Women in Tax

Judith Freedman
Judith Freedman, pictured with CIOT President Bill Dodwell, was also in the Global Tax 50 2015

Judith Freedman is one of the Global Tax 50 entrants from the world of academia, who holds a wealth of tax knowledge and is a leading tax professor.

Freedman, a professor in the Oxford Law Faculty, was involved in establishing the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation (CBT) and is now its director of legal research and a member of its steering committee and advisory board.

This year, the Oxford Law Faculty, working with the CBT launched its new MSc master's course in taxation, designed by a combination of lawyers and economists, which welcomed its first students in September 2016 for the two-year part-time postgraduate degree.

A regular speaker and event organiser, Freedman gave this year's annual Chartered Tax Advisers' address. At the event, held at the Institution of Civil Engineers, she talked about "restoring trust" in the tax system. "We are currently on a trajectory that will increase transparency and regulation, but if transparency is increased without a commensurate increase in justified trust, the aims behind transparency (better tax collection, increased 'fairness') will not be served," Freedman said during her speech at the event. "We are likely to lower tax morale and raise distrust in the general population without necessarily increasing tax collection overall or improving its balance." Freedman's speech received many complements, and it even managed to strike a response from senior UK authority officials.

Freedman has also travelled abroad during the year to talk about various tax measures, including the general anti-tax avoidance rules (GAAR). In Tokyo, she spoke about the UK's experience and approach to GAAR, in Canberra about global corporate tax reform and in Sydney about the tax reform process.

Freedman is also a member of the tax law review committee of the Institute for Fiscal Studies and was involved in setting up, in 2015, a Women in Tax network that has gone from strength-to-strength, celebrating its first year of success in August 2016. The group raises the voice of women working in all spheres of tax and regularly holds skills development workshops, conferences and monthly breakfasts.

Freedman is also the general editor of the British Tax Review, which is published five times a year, and is on the editorial boards of several tax journals. In July 2016 she was elected a fellow of the British Academy for her work on taxation.

The Global Tax 50 2016
View the full list and introduction
The top 10 • Ranked in order of influence
1. Margrethe Vestager2. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists
3. Brexit4. Arun Jaitley
5. Jacob Lew6. Antoine Deltour and Raphaël Halet
7. Operation Zealots8. Guy Verhofstadt
9. Theresa May (and the 'three Brexiteers')10. Donald Trump
The remaining 40 • In alphabetic order
Kemi AdeosunPiet Battiau
Elise BeanMonica Bhatia
Allison ChristiansTim Cook
Rita de la FeriaCaroline Flint
Judith FreedmanChrystia Freeland
Pravin GordhanOrrin Hatch
Meg HillierMulyani Indrawati
Lou JiweiPaul Johnson
Stephanie JohnstonChris Jordan
Pravind JugnauthWang Jun
Jean-Claude JunckerKathleen Kerrigan
Christine LagardeWerner Langen
Jolyon MaughamAngela Merkel
Narendra ModiWill Morris
Michael NoonanGrace Perez-Navarro
Platform for the Collaboration on TaxDonato Raponi
Pascal Saint-AmansHeather Self
Robert Stack Tax Justice Network
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Transparency International
US Committee on Ways and MeansRodrigo Valdés

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