Rethinking Property Approaches in Resources for the Circular Economy

Call for papers for: Journal of Property, Planning and Environmental Law

This Special Issue of Journal of Property, Planning and Environmental Law is based on a conference organised around the subject of ‘Rethinking Property Approaches in Resources for the Circular Economy’, which was funded by the Society of Legal Scholars. This is a relatively new area in the literature with the topic not yet well covered. There are many theoretical discussions regarding the significance of property in resource management – whether privatisation, government intervention, or other intervention by other institutions is most appropriate (eg Hardin 1968; Welch 1983; Ostrom 1990; France-Hudson 2017). These debates have been applied within numerous contexts, for example private property rights in water (Lange and Shepheard 2014), and water as a common treasury and the possible role of communal property (Malcolm and Clarke 2017). Similar discussions are warranted within the context of the circular economy (in which waste and resource streams are reused, recycled and recovered) as these determine what can and cannot be done, and by whom, in relation to recycling, reusing and recovering wastes and resources. It is only recently that property rights in relation to waste have been explored, but this has either been superficial or been very limited and has had an economic rather than legal focus (eg Laybourn (2015) recognises that property rights is a key challenge for extended producer responsibility but does not elaborate on it; Desrochers (2012) only mentions property rights in relation to underpinning economic dimensions of industrial ecology, a particular manifestation of circular economy approaches).

Anticipated themes:

  • Waste
  • Circular economy
  • Property rights
  • Private property
  • Recycling

Submission Information

Submission Deadline: 28th February 2020
Proposed Publication Date: Vol 12 Issue 3 (2020)

All papers must be submitted via the journal's ScholarOne page. Please read the author guidelines before submitting.

If you have any queries, please get in touch with the Guest Editors.

Guest Editors

Katrien Steenmans
Coventry Law School and Centre for Business in Society
Coventry University
[email protected]

Rosalind Malcolm
School of Law and Environmental Regulatory Research Group
University of Surrey
[email protected]

Alison Clarke
School of Law
University of Surrey
[email protected]


Desrochers, P., ‘Freedom versus coercion in industrial ecology: A reply to Boons’ (2012) 9(2) Econ Journal Watch 78.
France-Hudson, B., ‘Surprisingly social: Private property and environmental management’ (2017) 29 Journal of Environmental Law 101.
Hardin, G., ‘The tragedy of the commons’ (1968) 162(3859) Science 1243.
Lange, B. and Shepheard, M., ‘Changing conceptions of rights to water? – An eco-socio-legal perspective’ (2014) 26(2) Journal of Environmental Law 215.
Laybourn, P., 2005. Delivering the circular economy. Paper presented at Seeding the BioEconomy, 15 March, Edmonton.
Malcolm, R. and Clarke, A., ‘Water: A common treasury’ in T Xu and A Clarke (eds), Legal strategies for the development and protection of communal property (Oxford University Press 2018).
Ostrom, E., Governing the commons: The evolution of institutions for collective action (Cambridge University Press 1990).
Welch, W.P., ‘The political feasibility of full ownership property rights: The cases of pollution and fisheries’ (1983) 16 Policy Sciences 165.