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Research

Key research areas

Arctic governance

Our research on arctic governance covers the Arctic Council, law of the sea, energy, resource management, boundary disputes, shipping, biodiversity protection, environmental law and climate change.  We work collaboratively with partners in Canada and around the world, including Asia, Australia, China, the EU, Norway, the Russian Federation, and the US.

Faculty Research Leads: Aldo Chircop, Phillip Saunders, David VanderZwaag

Canadian, comparative and international Maritime law and policy

Our research in the maritime field covers a broad range of issues concerning the Canadian public and private law of marine transportation and maritime labour, frequently in comparison to neighbouring or similar jurisdictions such as the United Kingdom and United States. Research also covers the international maritime and labour conventions of the International Maritime Organization and International Labour Organization respectively.

Faculty Research Leads: Aldo Chircop, Moira McConnell

Canadian environmental law and policy

Our institute carries out research in a broad range of domestic environmental law areas, including species at risk, marine environmental protection, climate change, environmental assessments, public participation, resource management, and energy law.  We co-host the principle environmental law journal in Canada, the Journal of Environmental Law and Practice together with the University of Calgary.

Faculty Research Leads: Meinhard Doelle, David VanderZwaag

Climate change and energy law and policy

Our research in climate change and energy is based on the proposition that climate change and sustainable energy combine to present human kind with one of the great challenges of our time.  Our research explores both the challenges we face and possible solutions.  Specific research topics include the UNFCCC climate negotiations, national and subnational law and policy approaches to climate change, offshore energy law and policy, and technology governance.

Faculty Research Leads: Meinhard Doelle, Phillip Saunders, David VanderZwaag

Coastal and ocean law, policy and management

Our research in this area has an interdisciplinary focus and focuses on coastal law in support of integrated coastal zone management from comparative perspectives.  MELAW is the editorial home office of the international interdisciplinary Ocean Yearbook and the co-editors are MELAW Associates.

Faculty Research Leads: Aldo Chircop, David VanderZwaag

International environmental law and governance

Our research in the field of international environmental law and governance includes management of long-range transport of pollutants, the control of toxic chemicals and hazardous wastes, biodiversity protection, transboundary resource management, and trade and environment. A particular focus has been the implementation of precautionary and ecosystem approaches, and regulatory design.

Faculty Research Leads: Meinhard Doelle, Moira McConnell, David VanderZwaag

International law of the sea

Our research in this area has included a range of topics related to the development and implementation of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.  Among the many research topics are maritime boundary issues, jurisdiction over the high seas and the seabed, marine environmental protection, and coastal governance in light of jurisdiction over territorial seas, exclusive economic zones and continental shelves.

Faculty Research Leads: Aldo Chircop, Moira McConnell, Phillip Saunders, David VanderZwaag


Explore MELAW's research strength by learning about our research projects and discovering our research partners.