9d. Legal Aspects of Sustainable Development

Track Chairs

Goals and Objectives of the Track

The goal of this track is to discuss principles, key concepts, methods and applications of legal aspects of Sustainability. We will further map opportunities of and challenges for legal aspects in a sustainable development in various thematic and strategic subjects, thereby contributing to the development of these domains scientifically and practically. The topic related to all three dimensions of sustainable development (environmental, social, economic) and interdisciplinary contributions among and beyond these dimensions are highly encouraged and welcome.

Contributions from the following areas are sought after e.g.

  • Empirical (qualitatively and/or quantitatively data backed) and theoretical contributions
  • Philosophical and historical analysis; case studies; conceptual developments & assessments; descriptions of newly developed methods and their practical application.
  • Deductive and inductive studies; thematically horizontal or sectorial papers; studies of policy mixes among environmental, social and/or economic instruments; de lege lata and/or de lege ferenda essays.
  • Local studies with a potential wider application; comparisons of nations or other spatial units; analysis of regional integration; multilevel interplay.
  • Studies of Common Law and/or Continental Law (public, private and/or criminal/penal law), with a special regard to the environmental problems,
  • Contributions about soft law, binding and/or non-binding instruments, best practices, industry self-regulatory tools, formal and customary institutions,
  • The role of sustainability law for institutional change and government policy also towards future generations
  • Single (case) studies or comparisons related to strategies, plans, programs, conflict of interests and/or trade-offs among different values and interests. Studies related to any stakeholders.
  • Studies on substantial rights (such as human rights) and procedural rights (such as public participation (such as access to information, participation in procedures & access to justice)
  • Innovative local, national, regional & international legal principles/approaches towards more sustainability incl. e.g. degrowth law, green economy law, soft law & customary law
  • Legal institutions and inter-/intragenerational justice on the pathway towards a sustainable transitions
  • Constitutional framework on environmental sustainability and inter/intra generational justice
  • Environmental federalism and inclusive governance
  • Impacts of planning law on sustainable development
  • Legislative, administrative, judicial decision-making & enforcement by law in terms of priority setting, ignorance, uncertainty, risk, conflicts of interest and trade-offs; absolute and relative achievements by law
  • Gender, planetary boundaries and/or ecosystem services, footprint, sustainable production & consumption, rebound effect, cooperate social responsibility, quality management, environmental reporting etc.
  • Sustainable development elements of efficiency, effectiveness and sufficiency, environmental, social and economic capital, capacity and carrying capacity, also with the back ground of population questions

Length and content of the proposed abstract to the track

Each proposed abstract (in connection to an area pointed out above) of between 300 and 500 words (including all aspects),

  1. shall be best organized (without headlines) along usual structures (e.g. intro/method/findings or results/ discussion/conclusions)
  2. does not need to, but can include references
  3. shall provide in a final section
    a. to which SDG(s) and SDG-target(s) their proposed abstract especially relate to (e.g. “SDG+Target: 14.1.”).
    b. a brief indication how the proposed contribution relates to the topic of the Conference (“ACCELERATING PROGRESS TOWARDS SDG’s IN TIMES OF CRISIS”).

Abstracts which do not outline points 3.a.) AND 3.b.) might not be given special consideration in the selection for potential publications and might be considered less relevant in the Review.

Potential publication channels

With regard to potential publications, depending on the number and quality of contributions:

  1. The Journal of Cleaner Production (https://www.journals.elsevier.com/journal-of-cleaner-production) Impact Factor 2018 = 6,358) already asked to submit a proposal for an open-call Special Issue on law, governance and policy.
  2. An separate global volume on SDGs and law can be envisaged in the ISDRS-Routledge Series (http://isdrs.org/routledge/)


Please submit your abstract by visiting the abstract submission system (you will be required to setup an account first) at


Extended deadline for abstracts: 15 February 2021

PLEASE ALSO CONSIDER A PARTICIPATION IN OUR PHD-WORKSHOP! https://2021.isdrsconferences.org/phd-workshop/