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Richard Macrory Prize

2016 Winner Announced!

Winner of JEL Richard Macrory Prize for Best Article

Emma Lees, 'Allocation of Decision Making Power under the Habitats Directive' (2016) 28 JEL 191

In the context of a 2016 volume packed with a number of methodologically innovative research articles, including much exciting interdisciplinary work, the panel was struck by the originality and topicality of Emma’s use of rigorous doctrinal analysis to learn about the role of administrative, scientific and judicial authority in habitats protection.

Drawing on a close reading of a selection of case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union and the UK courts, Emma makes an important distinction between the emphasis placed on achieving the substantive ‘result’ of environmental protection within the CJEU, and the emphasis placed on the procedures designed to achieve that result within UK law.

Without suggesting that one approach or the other is better, Emma argues for ‘us to consider more fully what we want to use the judiciary for in an environmental context’. Of particular interest is Emma’s suggestion that environmental lawyers in the UK ‘embrace’ the common law process, both in terms of giving meaning to environmental statutes incrementally, against the backdrop of particular cases, and in terms of ‘well-established common law principles of judicial review’.
This, then, is an article on EU law that the panel considered had grown in importance in light of the EU referendum.

JEL Richard Macrory Prize for Best Article: Honourable Mention

J McGee and J Steffek, 'The Copenhagen Turn in Global Climate Governance and the Contentious History of Differentiation in International Law' (2016) 28 JEL 37

This article on the UN Climate Change legal regime impressed the judges by adding something new and important to a crowded field of scholarship. The authors’ central argument is that the climate law literature is dominated by what they call ‘short term’ analyses of the evolution of the Treaty regime. Drawing on Karl Polanyi’s ‘historical economic sociology’, and combining this with doctrinal analysis, the authors argue that the ‘Copenhagen turn’ out of which the Paris Agreement emerged is part of a broader and deeper rooted conflict over the design of institutions of global governance – a conflict which centres on a struggle between liberalisation and interventionism. They see this struggle continuing over the coming years: i.e. they do not see the redistributive, interventionist ideas underpinning the Kyoto Protocol as ‘having run their course’ as a consequence of the Paris Agreement’s emphasis on liberalisation.

2015 Winner Announced!

The 2015 Richard Macrory Prize has been announced. The Judging Panel says of this year's prize:
"The judging panel was unanimous in finding that the JEL has had a very impressive year in its scholarly output. We did not have an easy task picking a winner from the articles that have been published in the three issues of 2015. This was particularly because the combination of the year’s articles – with their range of methodologies, jurisdictions, career stages of authors and topics – made the field so impressive. Selecting one winner does not capture that richness."

The 2015 Richard Macrory Prize was awarded to Vito De Lucia for his paper ‘Competing Narratives and Complex Genealogies: The Ecosystem Approach in International Environmental Law'.

The Judging Panel writes about this paper:
"This article stood out with its masterful handling of a range of disciplinary approaches to consider an important issue – how we can understand the complexity of the ecosystem approach, which is a now prevalent internationally as a ‘new paradigm of environmental management’. We felt this paper has the potential to be a landmark paper for years to come and moves forward debate about concepts of environmental management in several interesting ways. In drawing on ideas from philosophy/ethics, international environmental law, ecology and legal theory, the article also forces reflection on how we understand other contested concepts in environmental law, and how dominant narratives and paradigms can influence and infiltrate understandings of legal concepts, even when they are apparently beneficial for the environment."

2015 Honorable Mentions

Kelvin FK Low and Jolene Lin for 'Carbon Credits as EU Like It: Property, Immunity, TragiCO2medy?'

The Judging Panel writes about this paper:
"This article is an excellent example of how excellent legal scholarship can make a valuable contribution in environmental law. The authors consider, from a property law perspective, the legal nature of a carbon credit. This thoughtful and rigorous analysis would be very helpful in a relevant legal dispute. The approach of the article moves the subject on in thinking about how environmental law concepts and more conventional areas of legal doctrine interrelate, examining how environmental regulation interacts with legal systems more deeply."

Click here to read the abstract.

Timo Koivurova, Paula Kankaanpää, and Adam Stępień for 'Innovative Environmental Protection: Lessons from the Arctic'

The Judging Panel writes about this paper:
"The panel found this piece fascinating in shedding light on a unique regime of governance – the Arctic Council. The authors show how a relatively informal system of regional governance has evolved over time to become an influential regional body by establishing an epistemic community and developing expertise. The methodological approach adopted by the authors in exposing these developments demonstrated a real flair for understanding the complex aspects of institutional organisation and change."

Click here to read the abstract.

2014 Winners Announced!

In the first year of the Annual Richard Macrory Prize for the Best Article in the Journal of Environmental Law there were two prize-winning articles... the prize goes to:

*Mulugeta Ayalew, Jonathan Chenoweth, Rosalind Malcolm, Yacob Mulugetta, Lorna Grace Okotto, and Stephen Pedleythe are donating the prize money of £250 to the Haramaya University in Ethiopia , a worthy recipient.

Annual Richard Macrory Prize for the Best Article in the Journal of Environmental Law

The Editorial Board and the Advisory Board of the Journal of Environmental Law are delighted to announce the creation of the Annual Richard Macrory Prize for the Best Article in the Journal of Environmental Law . The Prize, £500 of OUP books, will be awarded each year for the most thought-provoking and innovative article published in the Journal in that year. All articles published in the Journal are eligible for the award.

The panel judging the prize will consist of five Board Members (excluding the General Editor) and the decision will be announced by December of each year. The first prize will be awarded in 2014.

Professor Richard Macrory is a leading figure in both UK environmental law scholarship and practice. Richard was the founding General Editor of the Journal and the criteria for the prize (‘innovative and thought provoking’) reflects what Richard fostered throughout his long and vibrant editorship. Alongside this, Richard, has played a crucial role in ensuring rigorous debate around environmental law issues as well as being a constant source of encouragement for younger scholars and lawyers.

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