Climate Law and Governance Specialization Course

Legal processes and instruments are important considerations in responding to climate change and serve as essential vehicles for implementing policy precepts and objectives across many sectors and fields that relate to climate law and governance. As such, both formal and informal rules are crucial in providing incentives and compliance mechanisms to regulate human behaviour as well as steer the action of government agencies and legislative entities. Further, legal mechanisms can help establish safeguards to protect the vulnerable, solve disputes and contribute to international cooperative efforts. At the same time, however, existing legal frameworks may pose obstacles to climate action and fundamental reforms of existing economic and environmental regimes required for effective responses to climate change.

The importance of these legal considerations and interventions is reflected in the (i)NDCs submitted by parties to the UNFCCC and Paris Agreement. The vast majority of party submissions highlight the need for institutional and legal reform in order to achieve their national contributions. In addition, many developing countries use the (i)NDCs to call for legal and institutional capacity building support.

In response to these needs, the Climate Law and Governance Initiative, which also coordinates Climate Law and Governance Day, the annual knowledge-sharing event, will convene a capacity building course that builds on the CLGI course held last year in Setatt during UNFCCC COP22 to address these issues. The day-long course will take place alongside the COP23 on Sunday, 12 November 2017 and will be offered in conjunction with the CLGI’s international partners. As leading climate law and governance experts join over 15,000 delegates and observers during COP23, the CLGD’s capacity-building course will provide an opportunity to for delegates to profit from the insights of renowned experts and deepen their understanding of the legal and institutional mechanisms available to implement their (i)NDCs and the Paris Agreement

Objectives of the Course
The overall objectives of the course are to increase and enhance the capacity of national delegates and observers to the UNFCCC COP processes to understand the legal and governance challenges involved in responding to climate change on the national and international levels. This necessarily includes strengthening the capacity of the target to respond to and address the challenges raised in the (i)NDCs and climate change action. Specifically, this course will enable participants to engage with and contribute to current key debates, as well as areas of focus and growth, in climate law and governance. These will be centered on the lessons of the Paris Agreement. These topics include:

– Paris Agreement, law and mitigation;
– Paris Agreement, law, adaptation and loss/damage;
– Paris agreement financing, transparency and accountability;
– Paris Agreement and REDD+;
– Paris Agreement, human rights and migration;
– Identify common legal and institutional barriers to climate action on the national level and methods of engaging institutional actors in discussions on climate action;
– Find useful online resources and tools on climate law and governance issues and know how to use them in practice; and
– Understand the process for legal preparedness assessments and the importance of legal preparedness assessments as tools for development and change.


The Law & Governance Specialization Course will take place at the United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS), at Platz der Vereinten Nationen 1, 53113 Bonn, Germany, thanks to the generous support of our partners at UNU.

How to Register
To register, please visit the event’s Eventbrite page. Registration closes 8 November.