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Department of Land Economy

Environment, Law & Economics

Studying at Cambridge

 

Dr Emma Lees

Dr Emma Lees

Reader in Environmental and Property Law

Visiting Professor, Newcastle University

Wilson Fellow in Land Economy, Fitzwilliam College

Co-Director, Cambridge Centre for Property Law (CCPL)

Fellow and Deputy Director (currently on sabbatical), Cambridge Centre for Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Governance (CEENRG)

Deputy Director of the Graduate Programme and Admissions Coordinator (currently on sabbatical)

Property Law

Environmental Law

Planning Law


Office Phone: (01223) 768417

Research Interests

I research all areas of land law but am particularly interested in registration and issues surrounding the 'public face' of the register, and the interactions between statutory regulation and the fundamental principles of land law. I also research environmental law, focusing on national law regulation of the use of land and the of the judiciary in environmental adjudication. In particular I have focused on waste, contaminated land and habitats' protection. I also consider local and national issues in planning law.

Research Supervision

I have supervised a wide range undergraduate and graduate dissertations on environmental and land law and PhD projects on Scottish land law, environmental justice in Australia, Brazil and Canada, and climate change movements.

Teaching

I have lectured on the legal research skills elements of paper 3. I also lecture land law, and landlord and tenant law and legal issues in real estate finance. I am the paper coordinator and lecturer for the graduate paper on national and comparative environmental law. I supervise land law and landlord and tenant law. I am currently on sabbatical leave.

Other Professional Activities

I sit on the editorial boards of the Conveyancer and Property Lawyer (book review editor), Environmental Law Review (case notes editor), and the Journal of Planning, Property and Environmental Law. From 2021 I will be editor in chief of the  Journal of Planning, Property and Environmental Law.

I have received prizes for my research.

  • “Allocation of decision-making power under the Habitats Directive” (2016) 28 Journal of Environmental Law 191-219. Winner of the Richard Macrory Prize for the Best Paper in the Journal of Environmental Law 2016
  • “Incoherence and incompatibility in planning law” (2015) 7 International Journal of Law in the Built Environment 111-126 (with E Shepherd). Winner of the Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2016 Highly Commended award.

Key Publications

Books (sole authored)

  • Forthcoming, The Principles of Land Law (OUP, 2020), c. 650 pages.
  • Interpreting Environmental Offences: The Need for Certainty (Hart, 2015), 264 pages.

Books (co-authored)

  • Forthcoming, Environmental Adjudication (2020), with O W Pedersen, c. 300 pages.
  • Environmental Law, with D McGillivray, S Bell, E Lees, O W Pedersen and E Stokes (OUP, 2017), 872 pages.
  • Q & A Land Law 2014-2015, with M J Dixon (Routledge, 2014), 230 pages.
  • Q & A Land Law 2013-2014, with M J Dixon and G Ll H Griffiths, (Routledge, 2012), 304 pages.

Edited Collections

  • Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law, with J E Viñuales (OUP, 2019), 1328 pages.
  • Environmental and Energy Law Vol I-III (Part of The International Library of Law and the Environment series), with J E Viñuales (Edward Elgar, 2017), 2856 pages.

 Journal Special Issues

  • Journal of Property, Planning and Environmental Law – “Regulatory Issues in Property Law”, editorial “Regulation and the Morphology of Property”, 86 pages.
  • Climate Policy – “Climate Policy after the 2015 Paris Conference”, with J E Viñuales, J Depledge, and D M Reiner, (2017) Vol 17, Issue 1, 110 pages. 

Book Chapters

  • In review, “Seeking Environmental Information” in Aine Ryall and Gregory Jones
  • Forthcoming, “Land registration in England and Wales: problems, solutions and missed opportunities” in D Grinlinton and R Thomas, Land Registration and Title Security in the Digital Age (Routledge, 2020), with M Dixon.
  • “Value in Comparative Law–3D Cartography and Analytical Description” in Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law, E Lees and J E Viñuales (OUP, 2019), pp.35-56, 22 pages
  • “The European Union” in Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law, E Lees and J E Viñuales (OUP, 2019), with M Gehring and F Phillips, pp.149-170, 22 pages.
  • “Contaminated Sites” in Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law, E Lees and J E Viñuales (OUP, 2019), pp. 626-646, 21 pages.
  • “Adjudication Systems” in Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law, E Lees and J E Viñuales (OUP, 2019), pp. 790-810, 21 pages.
  • “Environmental Law and Criminal Law” in Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law, E Lees and J E Viñuales (OUP, 2019), pp.1119-1138, 20 pages.
  • “Guaranteed Title, No Title Guaranteed” in New Perspectives on Land Registration, A Goymour et al (Hart, 2018) pp. 97-116, 20 pages.
  • “The Public Face of the Register: Confidence in the Land Registration Act 2002” in Das Grundbuch im Europa des 21. Jahrhunderts, A Wudarski (Duncker & Humblot, 2016) pp. 371-394, 24 pages.
  • “Contamination and the Polluter Pays Principle” in Implementing Environmental Law, P Martin & K Kennedy (Edward Elgar, 2015) pp. 118-133, 16 pages. 
  • “State Guaranteed Title: the Land Registration Act 2002” in Property Law Perspectives III, D Gruyaert et al (Intersentia, 2015) pp. 117-134, 18 pages.

Articles and Note—Sole Authored

  • In production, “Tenancies and motive – decency in private law” (for Modern Studies in Property Law)
  • Forthcoming, “The Boundaries in Land Law: Trusts, Estoppel, Validity and Value”, [2020] Conv
  • Forthcoming “Langton v Secretary of State for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs: Badger Cull in the Court of Appeal”, (2020) Environmental Law Review
  • “Regulation and the Morphology of Property” (2019) Journal of Property, Planning and Environmental Law (editorial), 82-86, 5 pages.
  • “Property in the Anthropocene” (2019) 43 William and Mary Environmental Law and Policy Review 514-593, 80 pages.
  • “End of Waste Status and the Re-establishment of the Definition of Waste Panel” (2018) 20(4) Environmental Law Review 233-239, 7 pages.
  • “Liability for Contaminated Land: Powys County Council v Price” (2018) 20(2) Environmental Law Review 39-45, 7 pages.
  • “Agency, Knowledge and Good Faith in Land Registration: Knightsbridge Property Development Corporation (UK) Limited v South Chelsea Properties Limited” [2018] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 76-84, 9 pages.
  • “Morphological Analysis of Legal Ideology: Locating Interpretive Divergence” (2018) 10 Journal of Property, Planning and Environmental Law 5-16 (with E Shepherd), 12 pages. 
  • “Article 8, Proportionality and Horizontal Effect” (2017) 133 Law Quarterly Review 31-36, 6 pages.
  • Mortgage Express v Lambert: Mere Equities and Overreaching” [2017] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 71-82, 12 pages.
  • “Concretising the Precautionary Principle in Habitats Protection—Grüne Lige Sachsen v Freistaat Sachsen and Orleans v Vlaams Gewest” (2017) 19 Environmental Law Review 126-132, 7 pages.
  • “Responsibility and Liability for Climate Loss and Damage after Paris” (2017) 17 Climate Policy 59-70, 12 pages
  • “Allocation of decision-making power under the Habitats Directive” (2016) 28 Journal of Environmental Law 191-219. Winner of the Richard Macrory Prize for the Best Paper in the Journal of Environmental Law 2016.
  • “Powers of the beneficiary of a charge” (2016) 80 Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 157-167.
  • “The polluter pays principle and the remediation of land” (2016) 8 International Journal of Law in the Built Environment 2-20.
  • “Encroachments and schedule 6 LRA 2002: unknotting the tangle” (2015) 79 Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 110-122.
  • MacDonald v MacDonald: horizontal effect of Article 8” (2015) 131 Law Quarterly Review 34-39. Discussed by the Supreme Court in Versloot Dredging BV v HDI Gerling Industrie Versicherung AG [2016] UKSC 45.
  • “Rectification of the register—prospective or retrospective?” (2015) 78 Modern Law Review 361-371 
  • “Registration make-believe and forgery—Swift 1st Ltd v Chief Land Registrar” (2015) 131 Law Quarterly Review 515-519.
  • “Indemnity and the Land Registration Act 2002” (2014) 73 Cambridge Law Journal 250-253.
  • Lawrence v Fen Tigers: noise in the Supreme Court” (2014) 78 Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 449-460.
  • “Localism and environmental law: uneasy bedfellows?” [2014] Journal of Planning and Environmental Law 176-180.
  • “The meaning of ‘deposit’: Thames Water v Bromley Magistrates’ Court” (2014) 26 Journal of Environmental Law 1-9.
  • “Actions for possession in the context of political protest: the role of article one, protocol one and horizontal effect” (2013) 77 Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 43-53.
  • Keay v Morris Homes and section 2 Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1989” (2013) 77 Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 68-74.
  • Richall Holdings v Fitzwilliam: Malory v Cheshire Homes and the LRA 2002” (2013) 76 Modern Law Review 924-934.
  • “Title by registration—rectification, indemnity and mistake and the Land Registration Act 2002” (2013) 76 Modern Law Review 62-82.
  • “Interpreting the contaminated land regime: should the ‘polluter’ pay?” (2012) 14 Environmental Law Review 98-110.
  • “The contaminated land regime—new guidance, and a new philosophy?” (2012) 14 Environmental Law Review 267-278 
  • “Pushing the boundaries of Dutton” (2011) 75 Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 74-82 (as Lochery).
  • “Causing contamination: R (Crest Nicholson Residential Limited) v Secretary of State for the Environment” (2010) 140 Scottish Planning and Environmental Law Journal 90-91 (as Lochery).

Articles and NotesCo-Authored

  • “Morphological analysis of legal ideology: locating interpretive divergence” (2018) 10 Journal of Property, Planning and Environmental Law 5-16 (with E Shepherd).
  • “Interests, powers and mere equities in modern land law” (2017) 37 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 435-460 (with S Cooper).
  • “Incoherence and incompatibility in planning law” (2015) 7 International Journal of Law in the Built Environment 111-126 (with E Shepherd). Winner of the Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2016 Highly Commended award.

Other Publications

Book Reviews

  • “A Practical Approach to Planning Law” [2020] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer
  • “Foreclosed” [2019] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer
  • “Modern Studies in Property Law Volume 9” [2018] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer
  • “Regulatory Property Rights” [2018] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer
  • “Great Debates in Land Law” [2016] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 503-505.
  • “Expropriation Volumes I and II” [2016] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 328-330.
  • “Introduction to Land Law” [2015] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 537-538.
  • “The Right to Housing: Law, Concepts, and Possibilities” [2015] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 95-96.

Conference papers

  • “Tenancies and Motive – Decency in Private Law” MSPL bi-annual conference, Newcastle, UK, April 2020.
  •  “The ideology of the rule of law in land use disputes” AAG 2018 Annual Meeting, New Orleans, USA, April 2018 (with E Shepherd).
  • “The precautionary principle in habitats protection: obscuring scientific conflict and the proper judicial role” European Environmental Law Forum, Copenhagen, Denmark, August/September 2017.
  • “Rule of law and ideology in planning—the role of the judiciary” George Mason/Cambridge Property and Regulation Symposium, Washington DC, USA, May 2017 (with E Shepherd, invited speaker).
  • “A justification for stewardship in theories of group obligations” Association for Law and Property in Society, Ann Arbor, USA, May 2017.
  • “The ‘New’ Secure Tenancy” New Work in Property and Trusts, London, UK, April 2017 (invited speaker).
  • “Environmental law and criminal law” Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law Workshop, Cambridge, UK, January 2017.
  • “Adjudication systems” Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law Workshop, Cambridge, UK, January 2017.
  • “Legal responsibility for loss and damage” Climate Change and Energy After Paris, Cambridge, UK, January 2016.
  • “Human rights and European property law: integration or imposition” Association for Law and Property in Society, Athens, Georgia, USA, May 2015.
  • “Law as space” Oxford Brookes Symposium on Law and Architecture, Oxford, UK, March 2015 (invited speaker).
  • “Legal barriers to sustainable development” LSE Debate on Sustainable Development, London, UK, March 2015 (invited speaker).
  • “A case of mistaken priority” Cambridge Centre for Property Law Seminar Series, Cambridge, UK, December 2014.
  • “Guaranteed title: no title guaranteed” Land Registration Conference, Cambridge, UK, November 2014.
  • “The Role of the judiciary in environmental decision-making” Cambridge Centre for Public Law, Cambridge, UK, November 2014.
  • “Understanding Article 1 Protocol 1” Cambridge Centre for Private Law, Cambridge, UK, October 2014.
  • “Horizontal effect in land law: how to balance Articles 8, 10 and 11 and Article 1 Protocol 1” Young Property Lawyers Forum, Oxford, UK, September 2014.
  • “Local decision-making and national goals: incoherence and incompatibility in planning law” (with E Shepherd) AESOP, Utrecht, the Netherlands, July 2014.
  • “The Land Registration Act 2002: putting the state guarantee of title front and centre” Young Property Lawyers Forum, Leuven, Belgium, November 2013.
  • “Remediation of contaminated land—the polluter pays principle and stewardship” 2013 IUCN Academy of Environmental Law Annual Colloquium, Hamilton NZ, June 2013.
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