LAS 381 • BIODIVERSITY
What this course is about. This Seminar examines the nature, structure, and content of biodiversity law, stressing its international and comparative aspects. Its chief focus is upon three general subjects: (1) the international regime of biodiversity protection, (2) the national models of regulation of Protected Areas, endangered species, flora, fauna, wetlands and habitats, and (3) the protection of tropical rain forests. Objectives. The main purpose of the seminar is to introduce students to the continuously expanding and evolving area of biodiversity protection. In that regard, we will study the role of law and policy in ensuring the protection of biodiversity and related natural resources, particularly after UNCED (United Nations Conference on Environment and Development) held in Rio de Janeiro, in 1992, and Rio +10 (Johannesburg 2002). We will discuss in detail the importance and effectiveness of the 1992 Biodiversity Convention as well as its implementation in different jurisdictions. The seminar is divided into three parts and is a short course. Lectures by outside experts. Finally, there will be at least one opportunity in which outside experts will visit the Law School and exchange their views with the students on a specific issue of the seminar programme. Oral Presentations to Class. Each student must make a presentation of her/his paper, during which she will lead a class discussion about her topic for aproximately 30-40 minutes. In addition to that, students will be required to make 20-25 minute oral presentations of assigned texts. The use of hand-outs is encouraged.
Research Paper. The paper should be 15-30 pages long, typed, double spaced. Students are expected to choose their paper topics in consultation with the class instructor. Interim drafts will not be graded. Failure to meet deadlines in timely fashion without the instructor's prior permission will affect the overall assessment. A copy of the second draft of each student's paper will be distributed to the group before its presentation. The final version of the paper should be submitted no later than May 31st and reflect relevant commentary during the presentation.
There are five components to the final grade: a) final paper: 40% b) 20-25 minute paper presentation with additional 10-15 min. for discussion: 20% c) short-presentations: 20% d) class participation: 10% e) class attendance: 10% The paper will be graded on five criteria (in order of decreasing importance): a) critical thinking; b) quantity and quality of research; c) organization; and d) overall impression.