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Exeter Centre for Environmental Law (ExCEL)

Welcome to the Exeter Centre for Environmental Law

The Exeter Centre for Environmental Law (ExCEL) is based in the University of Exeter, School of Law, Penryn Campus, Cornwall, as a home to cutting edge interdisciplinary research in the fields environmental law, policy and governance across the institution. All students and scholars are welcome to attend and participate in our events. Please, go get in touch if you would like to participate!

About us

Our mission

The Exeter Centre for Environmental Law (ExCEL) is established in 2022 to stimulate interdisciplinary internal partnerships with centres within the University. The purpose of ExCEL is to provide an intellectual environment to create a Worldwide Environmental Law and Policy Research Network with international academic partners, such as Duke, QUEX, and CUHK. In parallel, it is aimed to engage with international, national, and local stakeholders. In addition to being an attraction centre for law researchers willing to conduct their research in Cornwall, it is also one of the goals of ExCEL to support members with achieving impact through policy workshops and training, as well as PR and marketing.

Our research will focus on:

  • promoting the study and development of environmental, climate, and marine law and policy;
  • stimulate debate, collaboration, and networks in response to the most pressing needs of international, European, and local environmental matters; and
  • support teaching and training in the fields of environmental, climate, and marine law.

Our work

‌Our work is not merely based on legal discipline, but also has an interdisciplinary focus. Many of our members are from different disciplines and have first-hand experience related to environmental issues since ExCEL intends to leverage interdisciplinary network to produce research based on existing research in other disciplines. Accordingly, it is aimed to provide opportunities for all ECRs and postgraduates to be involved in producing outputs and funded projects by giving members advice on funding options and potential links and partners.

Members of the Centre conduct research for a future-proof environmental governance. We aim to contribute to the solution of international, national, and local environmental issues. In addition to build an efficient academic network as well as strong cooperation between the academia and stakeholders, we publish leading articles and reports concerning about current affairs. We actively participate in the work of international professional organizations and contribute to the events across the world. We convene various workshops on critical topics, which are open to academicians and stakeholders so that problems and potential solutions can be discussed from a holistic perspective.

The centre has close links with the Environment and Sustainability Institute (ESI) and Law and Business Cornwall (LAB/C) and is open to external researchers or practitioners who are interested in developing work in ExCEL research areas

Our members and research interests


Research interests

Dr Misan Afinotan

Environmental justice, Socio-ecological resilience, climate resilience, sustainable development law, climate change law, African legal theory and human rights law

Dr Justine Bendel

Global environmental law; international dispute settlement; public international law; environmental governance; environment and development nexus; protection of forests; methodologies in international law

Dr Catherine Caine

Environmental Law; Planning Law; Renewable Energy; NSIPs; EIA

Dr Tiago de Melo Cartaxo

Environmental law; environmental rights; climate law; resilience justice; adaptive law; land law; smart cities and territories; sustainable development goals

Dr Swati Gola

WTO; GATS; medical tourism; right to health; trade liberalisation and implications for human rights and social justice; conflict of norms in international law; surrogacy

Dr Ben Hudson

International human rights law; internal displacement; refugee and asylum law; access to higher education; legal education

Dr Caroline Keenan

Education for sustainable development; learning design and environmental conflicts

Dr Janet Keliher

Corporate and commercial law; corporate transactions; criminal law; contract law; law of corporate finance and legal foundations for business; employment law; family law; EU law; law and culture; gender-based violence at UK universities

Dr David Monciardini

Business regulation, Sustainability reporting, Circular economy, Innovation and value creation, Business and human rights, Sustainable finance

Dr Swastee Ranjan

Critical environmental law; law and urban environment; law and materialism; law and aesthetics

Dr Malcolm Rogge

Business & human rights law; international economic law; corporate law theory; comparative corporate governance; law and economic thought; law and development; law and philosophy; human rights and documentary cinema; law and film

Professor Severine Saintier

Commercial contracts; commercial agency contracts; contract law; comparative law; good faith; relational contracts; consumer protection; vulnerable consumers; AI and the law

Professor Aurel Sari

Public international law; the law of armed conflict; international conflict and security; hybrid threats; operational law; status of forces agreements; use of force; peacekeeping; collective security; grey zone conflict; NATO; hybrid warfare

Dr Monica Vessio

Contract law (smart contracts); banking law (digital banking: cbdcs, alt coins, stabelcoins); commerical law (circular economy, supplychains, sustainability)

Postdoctoral researchers


Research interests

Dr Lívia Batista

Climate law; climate justice; intellectual property rights; circular economy

PhD Students


Research interests

Thomas Baycock

Environmental Law; Law of the Sea; Polar Law; Environmental Criminal Law; Climate Law and Justice; Legal Personhood and Rights of Nature; Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction

Faruk Divarci

Law of the Sea; Offshore Renewable Energies

Harry Rawlinson

Transnational environmental law, environmental politics, urban climate law, systems theory/critical autopoiesis, object-oriented ontology, spatial law, and critical legal theory

External Associates


Research interests

Professor Craig Anthony (Tony) Arnold

Environmental justice principles and tools of land-use planning and the effects of land use on environmental justice; resilience justice; the concept of property as a web of interests; the integration of land use and water (“wet growth”); adaptive law for resilience; adaptive and inclusive watershed planning; public-interest limits on water privatization; equity in urban ecosystem services; and the emergence of “fourth-generation” legal and governance institutions.


ExCEL is involved in the following projects focusing on environmental law and policy:

  • Future-proof Transdiciplinary Thinking in Environmental Law (NERC Discipline Hopping for Environmental Solutions Fund);
  • ExCEL Interdisciplinary and External Network-Building Workshops


ExCEL will host events in Exeter and Cornwall (e.g., conferences, research facilitation, PGR events, visiting speakers) and will attend strategic events and activities, so members and associates can meet each other and share their ideas in person. Policy and funding-related training workshops and writing/research retreats are also planned to be organised.

There are no current events to display, but please come back soon for updates.

ExCEL Working Paper Series

Available soon.

Contact us

For non-media enquiries about the Exeter Centre for Environmental Law and its activities, please contact us in one of the following ways.



Exeter Centre for Environmental Law
University of Exeter, Penryn Campus, Peter Lanyon Building
Penryn, Cornwall
TR10 9FE, UK

For media enquires, please contact the Press Office at or +44 (0)1392 722307.