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Photo of Dr Tiago de Melo Cartaxo

Dr Tiago de Melo Cartaxo

Senior Lecturer in Environmental Law, Associate Director for External Engagement, ESI


Tiago de Melo Cartaxo is a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Law in the University of Exeter, where he has founded the Exeter Centre for Environmental Law (ExCEL) and is part of Law and Business Cornwall (LAB/C), teaching and researching in the areas of environmental rights, climate and resilience justice, circular economy and the energy transition. He currently is Associate Director for External Engagement in the Environment and Sustainability Institute (ESI) and he has also been Director of Postgraduate Research for Humanities and Social Sciences, Cornwall. Previously, he was an invited professor in Environmental Law and Administrative Law at NOVA School of Law Lisbon, where he was awarded a European PhD in Law, with two national FCT fellowships and a Fulbright Scholarship for research in the University of Louisville. He has also received a Higher Education Teaching Certificate from Harvard University.

Holding a degree in Law from the University of Lisbon and a Masters in Environmental Law from the University of Coimbra, Tiago has founded and coordinated NOVA Law Green Lab and was a postdoctoral researcher in the University of Surrey School of Law, working in transcontinental projects on governance and regulation of single-use plastics. He worked as an attorney for law firms in Lisbon and advised local and national governments in the field of Environmental Law and Planning. In the Portuguese National Government, he accompanied the implementation of the Economic and Financial Assistance Programme (2011-2014) in the areas of the Environment and Economy. Under the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union, Tiago chaired the WPIEI (Basel) and coordinated an academic partnership with the Portuguese Environment Agency to monitor and implement international Conventions in the areas of waste and environmental assessment. He has been a member of the Society of Legal ScholarsBiodiversity and People Network, ILA Committee on Sustainable Development and the Green Economy in International Trade Law, the ICC Commission on Environment and Energy and the Global Network for Human Rights and the Environment.

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Tiago is open to multidisciplinary research in the following areas:

  • Environmental and Climate Law;
  • Environmental Rights and Environmental Justice;
  • Adaptive Legal Mechanisms applied to the Environment;
  • Law and Circular Economy;
  • Regulation of Smart and Sustainable Cities; and
  • United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.


  • 2023: Research England Open Innovation Platform Collaboration Fund (£14,970.34 combined with £10,000.00 partner contributions from Cornwall Council: £24,970.34) – “Research on the effectiveness of the local environmental compliance regime within Cornwall & the Isles of Scilly”, Lead Applicant, with Dr Misan Afinotan (1st February – 30th November 2023);
  • 2022: Europe Network Fund (£12,000.00), “JustCE (LEX) – Toward a Just Circular Economy (Lund + Exeter)”, co-applicant, with Dr David Monciardini, Dr Carl Dalhammar, and Dr Lívia Regina Batista (1st March – 31st July 2023);
  • 2022: Research England Policy Support Fund (£20,236.00), “Making Cornwall a Biosphere Reserve? Local, National and International Policymaking for Effective Governance in Biosphere Reserves”, Lead Applicant, with Dr Swastee Ranjan (1st December 2022 – 31st July 2023);
  • 2022: Research England Policy Support Fund (£11,799.00), “Cornwall Food Policy Pact (CFPP)”, co-applicant, with Dr David Monciardini (15th January 2022 – 31st March 2022);
  • 2021: Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Discipline Hopping for Environmental Solutions Fund (£2,357.70 ), “Future-proof Interdisciplinary Interpretation of Environmental Law for Social-ecological Resilience”, Lead Applicant, with Dr Josh Martin and Dr Swastee Ranjan (by 31st March 2022); 
  • 2021: University of Exeter SSIS ADR Discretionary Fund (£4,809.00), “Exeter Centre for Environmental Law (ExCEL): Interdisciplinary and External Network-Building Workshops”, with Dr Josh Martin and Dr Swastee Ranjan (14th January 2022 – 31st July 2022);
  • 2020: Portuguese Environment Agency (250,525.00 Euro), “Implementation of the Basel and Espoo Conventions under the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union”, Coordinator (December 2020-December 2021).

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 Tiago welcomes research supervisions in the areas of Environmental & Climate Law.

Research students

Current PhD supervisions are:

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Copyright Notice: Any articles made available for download are for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the copyright holder.

| 2024 | 2023 | 2022 | 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 |


  • De Melo Cartaxo T. (2024) Five Conundrums in Modern Environmental Legal Research: From Dreaming Sustainability to Making it Effective, Responsible Legal Research and Innovation, mare et martin, 45-57.


  • Tito M, De Melo Cartaxo T, de Lima Ferraz C, Alija N, Meruje MM. (2023) Energy Efficiency as a Tool for Energy Poverty Reduction: A Legal Perspective, Routledge Handbook of Energy Communities and Smart Cities, Routledge, 155-171.


  • Monciardini D, Pieretto O, De Melo Cartaxo T. (2022) The Milan Food Policy: Six lessons for local food strategies, Policy@Exeter, 4 pages.
  • De Melo Cartaxo T. (2022) Lei de Bases do Clima: A Portuguese legal response to the biggest global challenge of our time, Diritti Comparati: Comparare i diritti fondamentali in Europa, pages 1-6.
  • Arnold CAT, De Melo Cartaxo T. (2022) Resilience Justice and Adaptive Law in European Cities, Urban Climate Resilience: The Role of Law, Edward Elgar Publishing, 125-150.


  • De Melo Cartaxo T. (2021) Social-ecological Resilience and Law in Cities: A Survey on Transatlantic Perceptions, NOVA Green Lab Yearbook, Almedina, 179-179.
  • De Melo Cartaxo T. (2021) NOVA Green Lab Yearbook, Almedina.
  • De Melo Cartaxo T, M Castilla J, Dymet M, Hossain K. (2021) Digitalization and smartening sustainable city development: an investigation from the high north European cities, Smart Cities and Regional Development (SCRD) Journal, volume 5, pages 83-101.


  • De Melo Cartaxo T. (2020) Mobility and transport policies: Between sustainability and a just transition, e-Pública, volume 2, pages 220-239.
  • de Castro Neto M, De Melo Cartaxo T. (2020) Algorithmic Cities: A Dystopic or Utopic Future?, How Smart Is Your City? Technological Innovation, Ethics and Inclusiveness, Springer Nature, 59-73.


  • de Castro Neto M, De Melo Cartaxo T. (2019) Smart and collective urban intelligence, Security at a Crossroad New Tools for New Challenges, Nova Science Publishers, 83-94.
  • Pereira Coutinho F, De Melo Cartaxo T, Rodríguez Barrigon JM. (2019) Os sujeitos não estaduais no direito internacional, Petrony.


  • De Melo Cartaxo T, Hossain K. (2018) Digitalization and smartening public governance of the European high north regions, Smart Cities and Regional Development (SCRD) Journal, volume 2, pages 65-80.
  • de Melo Cartaxo T. (2018) Environmental subsidiarity in the EU: or halfway to green federalism?, Perspectives on Federalism, volume 10, no. 3, pages 303-324, DOI:10.2478/pof-2018-0040. [PDF]


  • De Melo Cartaxo T, de Faria Lopes J. (2017) Desafios jurídicos para a mobilidade urbana em Lisboa e no Porto: descentralização de poderes e sustentabilidade, Themis: Revista da Faculdade de Direito da Universidade Nova de Lisboa, volume 18, pages 139-174.
  • De Melo Cartaxo T, de Castro Neto M, Vassalo V. (2017) Smart Legal Mechanisms for Sustainable Cities, rd International Conference on Sustainable Development (ICSD), Sarajevo, 19th - 23rd Apr 2017, Book of Proceedings of The 3rd International Conference on Sustainable Development (ICSD) 19-23 April 2017, Sarajevo.
  • de Castro Neto M, Rego JS, Neves FT, Cartaxo TM. (2017) Smart & Open Cities - Cidades Inteligentes & Abertas, 2017 12th Iberian Conference on Information Systems and Technologies (CISTI), DOI:10.23919/cisti.2017.7975912.
  • Cartaxo TDM. (2017) Commanders-in-chief beyond the border: analysing the powers of heads of state in Northern American federalism, Perspectives on Federalism, volume 9, no. 1, pages 94-127, DOI:10.1515/pof-2017-0005. [PDF]



  • Gomes AM, Rego JS, Antunes L, Carvalho LS, Albuquerque M, Giestas M, Simão P, Pais SC, Ferreira TM, De Melo Cartaxo T. (2015) Uma visão integrada para o território, Direção-Geral do Território.

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Modules taught

  • LAW2016C - Environmental Regulation and Redress
  • LAW2115C - Legal Foundations for Sustainable Business
  • LAW3016C - Legal Response to Environmental Destruction
  • LAW3017C - Land Law
  • LAW3300C - Law and Policy for Sustainability

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More information

Office: A-161, 1st floor, Peter Lanyon Building, Penryn Campus

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