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The Law School and the Climate Crisis

The Society of Legal Scholars is making available up to £6750 to fund work on The Law School and the Climate Crisis.

We frequently call the climate crisis the greatest challenge facing society, and our institutions and law schools. But universities’ and law schools’ knowledge, education and business ‘models’ remain highly carbon intensive. Any serious shift to net zero will mean significant changes for our institutions. In the face of a challenge that can seem overwhelming, the SLS seeks to provide a space for reflection and learning among its members.

We seek applications across any of the knottiest issues for our institutions, including research (especially travel); who, how and what we teach; estates and procurement; university governance. Each application may be selective or broad in its approach, and we will seek the broadest possible coverage of these issues overall.

We welcome applications for different sorts of projects. This could include academic workshops, or production of reports, reviews or surveys. It could be entirely academic led, or include university administration, practitioners and/or students (including as researchers, see eg this paper by Professor Steven Vaughan and students), as well as scholars from other disciplines. We seek to involve legal academics beyond those routinely teaching and researching climate / environmental law.

We seek applications for up to £750 from individual members of the SLS from around the UK and Ireland, for financial support for work on the climate emergency. Costs might include modest travel and catering, research or administrative assistance, IT assistance.

Applications, using the standard application form, should be made by email, by midday, on Monday 8 February 2021, for projects to be reported on by midday on Thursday 30 September 2021. Applications and queries should be addressed to the Society’s Administrative Secretary, Ms Rosa Bladon, admin@legalscholars.ac.uk.

Applications may be made by any Ordinary Member of the Society in good standing (i.e. fully paid-up) as at the 30 September 2020. Applications should clearly set out:

  • the proposed substance of the work;
  • how the work will advance understanding of the law school and the climate crisis;
  • collaborators (researchers, speakers, etc) and their commitment;
  • information on the inclusion of legal academics beyond the climate / environment sub-discipline;
  • proposed timeline, location of event if relevant;
  • whether (and if so which) other sources of financial support are being sought;
  • the proposed budget, including itemised costs.

Where an award is made, the successful applicant must make a brief report, no later than midday 30 September 2021 (unless good reasons for a longer timeline are set out in the application), to be published on the Society’s website and in The Reporter.