Should climate change be a mandatory part of legal education to prepare Scotland’s lawyers of the future?

Would having a universal definition of ‘ecocide’ help to tackle climate change globally?

If you are a law student in Scotland, you could wine £100 and a ticket to the Law Society’s COP26 conference on 29 October in Edinburgh, for your answers to these important questions.

The Law Society of Scotland has challenged law students to write or record their views on climate change to mark the climate change conference COP26 taking place in Glasgow from 1-12 November 2021.

LLB students and post-graduate Diploma students may submit their entry as a video, podcast, or written piece setting out their  views.

Emma Dixon, Convener of the Law Society of Scotland’s COP26 and Climate Change Working Group, said:

“COP26 is being held at a time when the effect of climate change globally is increasingly evident. This will impact on the work of the legal profession as we will be increasingly called upon to advise our clients on climate crisis issues, as well as our personal interest as individuals in doing what we can to help meet the Paris Agreement aims of limiting global heating.

“The biggest impact will be on our young people and in the run up to COP26 we have set this summer challenge to engage with Scots Law students, at undergraduate or postgraduate stage, and involve them in the important discussions on climate change and the law.

“I’m looking forward to seeing some powerful ideas and arguments put forward in the entries.”

How to enter:

Your entry may be a written piece such as an essay or an informative blog, or you may wish to create a short video or podcast to get your points across.


You can decide on the best format for your submission addressing one of the two topics below:

As university legal education develops, should climate change form a mandatory element of a future law degree?


The Independent Expert Panel for the Legal Definition of Ecocide has described it as “unlawful or wanton acts committed with knowledge that there is a substantial likelihood of severe and widespread or long-term damage to the environment being caused by those acts”

How do you consider that developing a universal definition of ecocide may assist in fighting climate change and environmental harm?

The deadline for all submissions is Friday, 1 October 2021. Written submissions should be between 1200 and 1400 words.

Videos or podcasts should be 5-8 minutes.

Submit your entries, with your name and university clearly stated, to marked Climate Change Student Competition. If you have any questions about submitting your entry you can contact the law society.

Best of luck to all entrants!

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