This programme is designed to equip you with an advanced, multidisciplinary knowledge of the legal issues and techniques related to environmental protection and the management of natural resources, with special emphasis on climate change.
You will analyze and evaluate the historic and ongoing development of international, European and national law for environmental protection, the interrelations between these different levels of law-making and the interactions between environmental law and other areas of law. You will also choose option courses to complement your legal studies with an analysis of the scientific and socioeconomic aspects of environmental protection.
This programme is affiliated with the University’s Global Environment & Society Academy.
You must complete 180 credits of study – 60 credits are taken in the compulsory dissertation and the remaining 120 credits are taken in taught courses.
You will experience a range of teaching styles on these courses, led by members of Edinburgh Law School academic community and experienced legal and industry practitioners.
You are expected to prepare in advance by reading the required materials and by reflecting on the issues to be discussed, and your participation in classes will be assessed.
For the dissertation, you will have a supervisor from whom you can expect guidance and support, but the purpose of the dissertation is to allow you to independently design and conduct a piece of research and analysis.
Please note that due to unforeseen circumstances or lack of demand for particular courses, we may not be able to run all courses as advertised come the start of the academic year.
By the end of the programme, students will have acquired an in-depth understanding of concepts, innovations, and challenges characterizing the law on environmental protection, natural resource management and responses to climate change, at the international, European and national level.
Students will also develop the critical skills necessary to carry out an independent analysis of the activity of international and supranational legal and political institutions, national governments and domestic courts, NGOs and the private sector in this field.
Openness to different scholarly approaches within the law will be encouraged, by offering the opportunity to complement specialized law courses with courses offered by the School of Social and Political Science, the Business School and the School of Geosciences addressing questions related to the scientific and socio-economic aspects of environmental protection.
The programme is suitable to prepare students for the increasingly broad range of specialized job opportunities offered at the national and international level by the public and private sector, as well as for advanced research.
The Global Environment and Climate Change Law programme is a gateway to graduates finding careers as specialized legal drafters, government advisers, international negotiators, legal advisers to private companies and NGOs, international civil servants, specialized researchers in academic and think-tank institutions and independent consultants.
Teaching staff will be available to support students in identifying internship opportunities in international and non-governmental organizations, academia and think-tanks. Recent graduates are now working in legal roles internationally, including in India, Mexico and the Netherlands, and for the European Commission.
A UK 2:1 honors degree, or its international equivalent, in law.
We may also consider a UK 2:1 honors degree, or its international equivalent, in a social science subject.
English language requirements
All applicants must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of their English language ability:
- an undergraduate or masters degree, that was taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country as defined by UK Visas and Immigration
- IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)
- TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)
- PTE(A): total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
- CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)
- Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components
Degrees taught and assessed in English must be no more than three years old at the beginning of your degree programme. Language tests must be no more than two years old at the beginning of your degree programme.
About the School
Renowned for our international and interdisciplinary outlook, we have been at the heart of legal education and research for more than 300 years.