LLM in Competition Law and PolicySeptember 7, 2023
Faculty of Law Programme:
Constitutional Law and Nature
Questions surrounding the constitutional protection of animal interests (from animal welfare to animal rights) and ‘the environment, or ‘Nature’ are rapidly increasing across the globe. These questions result from, amongst others, key legal developments whereby countries are increasingly establishing constitutional rights for nature. These legal developments have not yet widely been incorporated into academic programmes in South Africa. The rationale for this course lies in the current shortage of comparable programmes/short courses offered, particularly in South Africa and Africa. This course focuses largely on the current regulation of animals and the environment in South African law and highlights the scope and application of animal rights and rights of Nature in foreign domestic legal contexts as possible examples from which the South African context can draw lessons. This course has dedicated seminars on the topics of both legal rights for animal and the Rights of Nature, and includes seminars on animal law and environmental law. The course raises critical questions regarding the adequacy of the current scope, structure and functioning of existing governance approaches in the fields of constitutional law, environmental law and animal law in addressing the current planetary crisis associated with the Anthropocence and in facilitating a more balanced, just and equitable coexistence between humans, nature and non-human animals.
The short course aims to fill an educational, market-based gap in a specialised manner not replicated in similar programmes offered by other institutions. To our knowledge, this course is the first offering of its kind in South Africa and potentially Africa. The only other institution that offers a similar short course is the University of Johannesburg with their Foundations of Animal Law. The course is co-developed and co-lectured by Dr Angela van der Berg (GELC Director), and Attorney Amy Wilson (Adjunct Senior Lecturer, GELC).