Jump to Content
Apply Today


Oregon Lawyer Online

Environmental and Natural Resources Law (ENR) Program Seeking Solutions

For more than forty years, the University of Oregon School of Law’s Environmental and Natural Resources Law (ENR) Program has focused on innovative educational tools to prepare students for the legal profession while providing cutting-edge solutions to the most challenging environmental issues of our day. Building on this tradition, in 2003 ENR launched its Interdisciplinary Research Projects and Fellows Program, which teams student energy with faculty and practitioner expertise to meet community needs.

Thanks to a generous gift from UO alumnus Tom Bowerman, the University of Oregon School of Law is expanding the groundbreaking work already being conducted by the ENR Program’s Interdisciplinary Research Projects and Fellows Program.

Bowerman’s gift will enable the program to fund additional paid fellows and maintain high-quality administrative staff. More importantly, the gift will support the expansion of the ENR interdisciplinary projects through the support of a research associate to work with law students, other graduate students, faculty members from across the university, governmental organizations and nonprofit organizations to execute important research initiatives.

The newly created research associate position will be responsible for conducting independent research as part of one or more of the flagship ENR interdisciplinary projects: the Conservation Trust Project, the Energy Law and Policy Project; the Food Resiliency Project; the Global Environmental Democracy Project; the Native Environ­mental Sovereignty Project; the Oceans, Coasts and Watersheds Project; and the Sustainable Land Use Project.

These projects draw upon existing faculty strengths and provide synergistic opportunities for promoting student experience, providing service to the community, reaching out to diverse communities, bringing global content to the curriculum and bringing intellectual energy to bear on some of these critical environmental issues.

“Through increased research capacity, the Interdisciplinary Projects and Fellows Program will continue to offer multidisciplinary solutions to today’s environmental challenges while enhancing students’ educational opportunities,” said Heather Brinton, managing director for the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program. “It also allows for us to be directly responsive to our current circumstances and to fully realize our role as part of a major research institution that leads the field of environmental and natural resources law.”

Michael Moffitt, dean of the School of Law, noted the generosity of Bowerman and the power of his gift.

“This gift and the vision associated with this program will enhance our law school’s ability to do the three most important things a law school can do: teach our students, expand our understanding about the law and create a positive impact in the world,” Moffitt said. “I am confident that this innovative approach to legal education will be transformational, and I am deeply grateful to Tom Bowerman for his support and his creativity.” Bowerman hopes that the research made possible through his gift will go beneath the layers of current policy debates and reveal a set of broadly shared goals and values.

“I expect this research program will foster policy insights into chronic, persistent problems,” Bowerman said. “The Oregon ENR Program already attracts brilliant students, and the aim is to tap this talent for policy research as well as provide them with a high sense of relevance.”


Oregon Law » Oregon Lawyer Online » Autumn 2012 » Environmental and Natural Resources Law (ENR) Program Seeking Solutions