Flatt to Serve as Resident Scholar, Presents at International Environmental Workshop

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UNC School of Law Professor Victor Flatt will serve as a resident scholar at the Environmental Law Institute (ELI), in Washington, D.C., this fall.

ELI is an internationally recognized, non-partisan research and education center working to strengthen environmental protection by improving law and governance worldwide. The institute conducts impartial analysis of important environmental issues for opinion makers, including government officials, environmental and business leaders, academics, members of the environmental bar and journalists.

Flatt, the Thomas F. and Elizabeth Taft Distinguished Professor in Environmental Law and director of the Center for Law, Environment, Adaptation and Resources (CLEAR) at UNC School of Law, partnered with ELI in the past on ideas and articles.

“I am very excited to collaborate with ELI at this important time in understanding how we are going to move forward in planning climate change adaptation, both domestically and internationally,” says Flatt. “I look forward to what can result from close work over a longer period of time.”

In July, Flatt participated in an international workshop on “Disasters and Sociolegal Studies,” where he presented on the role of non-profit organizations in long-term disaster recovery.

The workshop, held in Onati, Spain, was hosted by the International Institute for the Sociology of Law. Flatt was among 20 scholars from Australia, Portugal, Spain, Germany, and the United States who attended.

The workshop addressed the relationship between socio-legal studies and disaster studies, as well as the legal frameworks and governance structures that apply to disasters, climate change and humanitarian aid. Attending scholars examined these topics in the context of recent disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and the earthquakes in Haiti and the Sichuan province in China.

Flatt’s presentation on the role of non-profits in long term disaster recovery and the need for recognition of that role in official long term recovery planning documents is closely tied to his work at UNC. As director of CLEAR, Flatt’s work examines the legal and regulatory frameworks affecting the ability of communities to adapt to climate change. As a part of his research, Flatt examines disaster preparedness and response planning.

-October 3, 2011

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