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School of Law

Development, Environment and the Law in the South

Course Code:
Course Not Running 2015/16
Unit value:

This course examines environmental law in its comparative and development context. It critically examines legal strategies employed in different jurisdictions for the pursuit of sustainable development. In particular, it seeks to analyse some of the main trends in the development of environmental law in the South over the past few decades. This includes an examination of national level regulation, the role of the judiciary as well as the role of international law and institutions in the development and implementation of national environmental laws and principles.

This course includes a general part which examines some of the main trends in the development of environmental law and some of the main principles and norms informing it. This is followed by the examination of a number of different themes that are of specific relevance in the South. Examples of topics which may be covered include: 

  • biodiversity, 
  • biosafety, 
  • water,
  • air pollution and climate change, 
  • forests, 
  • dams,
  • the role and impact of international institutions and multinational enterprises.

Objectives and learning outcomes of the course

The course seeks to provide students with an overall understanding of environmental regulation in its broader context. It provides an introduction to the basic structure of environmental law, the links between environmental regulation and development and the broader political, social and economic dimensions that inform environmental regulation. The course will seek to provide both general and specific analysis of environmental law. This will be achieved through a combination of general analysis and case studies, including comparisons between different countries and regions of the world.

Method of assessment

90% coursework (two essays of 4,500 words each); 10% presentation in class.  All coursework may be resubmitted.