Established in 2010

About MEPIELAN eBulletin

MEPIELAN E-Bulletin is a digital academic and practitioner newsletter of the MEPIELAN Centre, launched in 2010.  It features insight articles, reflective opinions, specially selected documents and cases, book reviews as well as news on thematic topics of direct interest of MEPIELAN Centre and on the activities and role of MEPIELAN Centre. Its content bridges theory and practice perspectives of relational international law, international environmental law and participatory governance , and international negotiating process, thus serving the primary goal of Centre: to develop an integrated, inter-disciplinary, relational, context-related and sustainably effective governance approach creating, protecting and advancing international common interest for the present and future generations. Providing a knowledge- and information-sharing platform and a scholarly forum, the Bulletin promotes innovative ideas and enlightened critical views, contributing to a broader scholarly debate on important issues of international common interest. The audience of the Bulletin includes academics, practitioners, researchers, university students, international lawyers, officials and personnel of international organizations and institutional arrangements, heads and personnel of national authorities at all levels (national, regional and local), and members of the civil society at large.

List of 2014 Editorial


Editorial Dec 2014

Approaching the end of an eventful year, I would like to welcome you to the new edition of MEPIELAN E-Bulletin and to express my deepest thanks and appreciation for your interest in reading and sharing with us the informative and thought-provoking material of this Bulletin. Retaining its high level of visibility and attendance, the Bulletin receives visitors from 163 countries. Its articles and elaborated news are quoted in academic articles, research papers and international reports, while authorizations are granted for their appearance in other international websites. It is our hope that the Bulletin, being already in operation for five years, continues to serve its fundamental purpose: to shed light on the importance of orienting our understanding of international environmental law and governance and their sustainability perspective towards the multifarious process of constructing and unfailingly developing international common interest. A global conception of justice can be adequately and substantially performed as common interest justice and it would be more than useful, in this respect, to recall a passage from Aristotle’s Nickomachean Ethics: “The political association”, he writes, “was originally formed and continues to be maintained for the interest of its members; and the lawgivers contemplate about it and postulate that justice is the common  interest” (translation mine).

In a Guest Article of this edition, Dr. Maguelonne D?jeant-Pons, Executive Secretary of the Steering Committee for Culture, Heritage and Landscape, and European Landscape Convention, Council of Europe, provides an authoritative insight into the application of the comprehensive and contextual “landscape approach”, encapsulated in the innovative European Landscape Convention, to generating integrated spatial planning and management for coastal zones and marine areas. Underlining the important public interest role and function of landscape viewed in all its constituent parts (ecological, environmental, social, cultural and economic) and their inter-relationships, as contemplated by the Convention, the author clearly and most usefully pinpoints the elements of a common interest governance associated with the “landscape approach”: the appropriate balancing of landscape protection, management and planning activities; the pursuance of a dynamic preservation and enhancement of  diversity and quality of the landscapes recognizing the fundamental role of knowledge; and the utmost importance of public awareness and active public participation. And as the author concludes, the European Landscape Convention serves as “benchmark by some countries” either “to initiate a process of profound changes in their landscape policies” or to “define their policy”. Relatedly, it would be of great interest, in our view, to envisage the European Landscape Convention as the subject of a more deliberation-based cooperative strategy between its Secretariat and the Barcelona Convention Secretariat. This would be a very promising institutional step to the right direction, in view of the complementary function of the Convention with the equally innovative Mediterranean Protocol of Integrated Coastal Zone Management, developed in the framework of the Barcelona Convention system, and the pertinent need to build a clustering in the governance of these two interrelated international instruments. Hence, both instruments could become more “visible” and their implementation could be performed more effectively and more efficiently in advancing international common interest.

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Editorial Feb 2014

It gives me immense pleasure to welcome you to this year’s first edition of MEPIELAN E-Bulletin and to share with you its insightful, thought-provoking contributions and informative material, all providing different aspects and perspectives of building international common interest in pursuance of the objectives of MEPIELAN Centre.

I am also delighted to inform you that MEPIELAN Centre was accredited as MAP Partner by decision of the 18th Ordinary Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean and its Protocols, held in Istanbul (3-6 December 2013). This is an exciting development which makes MEPIELAN Centre privileged and committed to be actively involved in constructive dialogue and consultations with MAP and the Mediterranean States Parties to the Barcelona Convention System and in addressing key issues of its work and its implementation. And, naturally, this new role will be adequately reflected in contributions and relevant information through the pages of this Bulletin.

So far, the progress of the Bulletin continues. The Bulletin’s website consistently increases its worldwide attendance and visibility: it receives visitors from 163 countries and its audience includes academics, researchers, officials from public authorities, intergovernmental organizations, NGOs, university students and private sector. And its scientific dynamic is most encouraging: Bulletin’s articles and elaborated news are internationally quoted and authorizations are granted for their publications in other international websites.

In this edition, the Guest Article is co-authored by Joseph F.C. DiMento, Professor of Law and Planning at the University of California Irvine, USA, and Hermanni Backer, Professional Secretary of the Helsinki Commission, who authoritatively discuss the complex aspects of environmental governance of the Arctic. Underlining its special regional characteristics and the variety of threats and pressures on its fragile natural environment and its native human inhabitants, they provide a well-balanced and insightful approach to the Arctic environmental governance: the existing multi-level governance system of the Arctic regime should become more effective by critically examining the developments in other regions and giving more consideration to the value of certain ideas improving environmental governance – it is within this context, they argue, that any “addition” of new international law could be meaningfully decided.

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