• Offered by ANU Law School
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Classification Advanced
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Environmental Studies, Law, Sustainability, Climate
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • AsPr Judith Jones
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Spring Session 2020
    See Future Offerings

There is growing national and international attention being given to regulatory strategies for the ownership, conservation and management of increasingly scarce, valuable and contested natural resources.

In the Australian natural resource context this gives rise to familiar challenges for resource sectors associated with land and coastal resources including forestry, mining and fisheries. But there are also specific environmental pressures relevant to the Australian continent in relation to: the use of land resources (under pressure from both the mining sector and agricultural vegetation clearance); the management and protection of increasingly scarce subterranean and surface waters; and, also the protection of Australia’s wealth of biodiversity (both terrestrial and marine).

While the historical management of local resources has involved the Australian states/territories there is also significant Federal involvement in the regulation and management of resources associated with land and the marine environment (including heritage and reserves), fresh-water management (for example within the Murray-Darling Basin river system), wildlife trade, biodiversity (including the Great Barrier Reef and forestry) and other resources.

This complex array of inter-connected contexts provides a wealth of case studies and examples through which to use a thematic approach to examine local, national and global strategies for natural resource regulation and property rights.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Assess and critically evaluate historical and contemporary theory, policy and legal institutions relevant to land, water and biodiversity ownership, exploitation and conservation including the role of the Federal (national) and/or state/territory governments;
  2. Compare, contrast, and critically evaluate the property rights regimes and legal doctrines relevant to land, water and biodiversity resource sectors across different contexts and jurisdictions;
  3. Critically investigate scholarly and theoretical material from multiple disciplines about property rights and sustainable use of land, water and biodiversity resources in an Australian or global context;
  4. Appraise the nature of property rights regimes for the conservation of land, water and biodiversity resources; and
  5. Independently research, critically examine and communicate about specific comparative aspects or problems of resource regulation in the land, water and biodiversity sectors in either a global or national context.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Preliminary essay (20) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  2. Research essay (80) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]

In response to COVID-19: Please note that Semester 2 Class Summary information (available under the classes tab) is as up to date as possible. Changes to Class Summaries not captured by this publication will be available to enrolled students via Wattle. 

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


The workload required for the completion of this course will be approximately150 hours in total. If offered as a blended course it is anticipated that the workload required for completion of activities for this course (including 2 hour seminars accessible off-campus) will be approximately 12 - 14 hours per week over 6 weeks (a total of 75 hours) as guided on the Wattle site. If offered as an intensive (on-campus) then 12-14 hours of study time per week in the 4 weeks leading up to the intensive (50 hours) will be required, followed by 3 - 4 days attendance for 24 hours of intensive classes. In either the off-campus or on-campus mode, the balance of the study time will be spent on independently researching and writing for assessment tasks. 

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be studying a: Master of Laws (7300XLLM, MLLM), Master of Laws in Migration (NLLML), Master of Laws in International Law (NLLIL), Master of Laws in Environmental Law (NLLEN), Master of Laws in Law, Governance & Development (NLLGD), Master of Laws in International Security Law (NLLSL), Master of Laws in Government and Regulation (NLLGR), Master of Legal Practice (MLEGP), OR Juris Doctor (7330XJD, 7330HJD or MJD) and have completed or be completing five 1000 level LAWS courses or five 6100 level LAWS courses; OR Graduate Certificate of Law (CLAW) and have completed or be completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions; OR Master of Military Law (MMILL). Students undertaking any ANU graduate program may apply for this course. Enrolments are accepted on a case-by-case basis. Please contact the ANU College of Law for permission number.

Prescribed Texts

Students must rely on the approved Class Summary which will be posted to the Programs and Courses site approximately 2 weeks prior to the commencement of the course.

Preliminary Reading

An e-brick will be available on the Wattle course site

Assumed Knowledge

This course assumes an understanding of environmental issues and/or environmental law principles. There is no assumed knowledge about the specific subject matter of the course.  


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $4320
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $5760
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
9621 12 Oct 2020 12 Oct 2020 23 Oct 2020 27 Nov 2020 Online View

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