Framing Nature in Law: New European Pathways – Next session on April 27

The matter of rights of nature has already been widely discussed across the globe. The ambition of this seminar is to focus on European developments and lines of thought in order to analyse how nature is conceptualised and translated into law. The recent recognition of the Mar Menor in Spain could be a first step, but it should be assessed critically.

The composition of the organising committee is inter- and multidisciplinary, gathering philosophers, lawyers and economists. We therefore particularly appreciate interdisciplinary approaches.

The main aim of the seminar is therefore to critically reflect on the ambiguities of rights of nature. Despite an increasingly noticeable presence in academic, activist and media spaces, it seems to us that the expression of rights of nature groups together approaches that are sometimes very different. Are we talking about rights in the purely legal sense of the term, or rather about moral rights ? Is it really the same thing to make nature a subject of law or a legal person ? Is it only a question of standing, inspired by “legal persons”, or is it a question of radically transforming the dominant paradigm(s) in environmental law ? After all, haven’t the rights of nature already been enshrined in a series of existing provisions, even though implicitly ? These questions cannot be avoided, especially when positions on the issue are very often more a matter of principle than of well-informed scientific analysis.

This seminar is co-organised by the CEDRE at the Université Saint-Louis Bruxelles, the CRED and CERSA laboratories of université Paris 2 Panthéon-Assas, the Prospero research center and the ECN team (Environment : Concepts and Norms) of the Institut Jean Nicod at École normale supérieure.

Location : On zoom – via this link 

Upcoming session

“Rights of Nature and the Ontological Turn” 

A presentation by Gauthier Dierickx (Université Saint-Louis – Bruxelles), on 27 April 2023 from 5 to 7p.m. (CET), online (via Zoom, link here

For proponents of the ontological turn (Latour, Descola, Viveiros de Castro, Stengers ?), the nature/culture divide, far from being universal and ahistorical, is actually a contingent product of what they call “Western Modernity”. Accordingly, other ontologies or worlds, they argue, are possible, and even appealing.My aim is threefold. First, I will demonstrate that an ontological approach can help us better understand the political and/or ecological implications of some rights of nature cases. Among other things, I will show that those cases try to resolve “ontological conflicts” (Blaser) between indigenous peoples and States. Second, I will argue that this ontological approach is also useful to grasp the interest  of Rights of Nature within a European framework. The experience of the Parliament of Loire (Parlement de Loire) will constitute here a precious resource. Finally, throughout this communication, I will, more speculatively maybe, examine the specific ontological regime of law, as well as the role that it may play in the advent of a “new climatic regime” (Latour).

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The ambition of this seminar is to assess how nature is conceptualised and translated into law in Europe today, including (but not exclusively) via the issue of rights. The purpose of the webinar series is neither to advocate nor condemn rights of nature per se, but rather to figure out the opportunities and the limits of this pathway in the European context, taking due account of the current acquis ( on the habitats and birds directives for instance) and of important new legislative prospects (on restoring nature in Europe). Despite an increasingly noticeable presence in academic, activist and media spaces, it seems indeed that the expression of rights of nature groups together approaches that are sometimes very different. Are we talking about rights in the purely legal sense of the term, or rather about moral rights? Is it really the same thing to make nature a subject of law or a legal person? Is it only a question of standing, inspired by “legal persons”, or is it a question of radically transforming the dominant paradigm(s) in environmental law? After all, haven’t rights of nature already been enshrined in a series of existing provisions, even though implicitly? 

More info? Write to  framing.nature.seminar@gmail.com

Contact person at Université Saint-Louis Bruxelles: Gauthier Dierickx


OpenEdition vous propose de citer ce billet de la manière suivante :
Delphine Misonne (9 janvier 2023). Framing Nature in Law: New European Pathways – Next session on April 27. CEDRE, Droit Environnement Patrimoine. Consulté le 19 juillet 2024 à l’adresse https://doi.org/10.58079/mhpj