Professor Jorge E. Viñuales

Harold Samuel Professor of Law and Environmental Policy at the University of Cambridge and the Director of the Cambridge Centre for Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance (C-EENRG)

Email address: jev32 (at)


Jorge E. Viñuales is the Harold Samuel Professor of Law and Environmental Policy at the University of Cambridge and the Director of the Cambridge Centre for Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance (C-EENRG). He is also Of Counsel with LALIVE. Prior to joining Cambridge, he was the Pictet Chair of International Environmental Law at the Graduate Institute, Geneva, where he keeps a limited affiliation as Adjunct Professor of Public International Law.

Jorge has published widely in his specialty areas, most recently his books The Rio Declaration on Environment and Development. A Commentary (OUP 2015), International Environmental Law (CUP 2015, with P.-M. Dupuy), The Foundations of International Investment Law (OUP 2014, with Z. Douglas and J. Pauwelyn), and Foreign Investment and the Environment in International Law (CUP 2012). He is the General Editor of the Cambridge Studies on Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance, published by Cambridge University Press.

He also has wide experience in the practice of international law, both in an advisory and a litigation context. He has served as arbitrator, counsel, expert and, earlier in his career, as secretary of arbitration tribunals, and he is also a member of the compliance committee of the UNECE Protocol on Water and Health.

Jorge received his education in Argentina (UNICEN), Switzerland (HEI, Geneva, Freiburg), the United States (Harvard), and France (Sciences Po). His mother tongue is Spanish and he is fluent in English, French and Italian.

Research interests

Jorge’s current research interest focus on sustainability transitions, understood as social and technological processes driven by environmental constraints that lead to fundamental changes in social organisation. The role of law in such transitions is of particular importance both as a technology to bring, guide and/or manage environment-driven societal transformations and as the expression of societal values setting bounds to technological and organisational change. Examples of this focus include his current work on energy as a regulatory object in international law or on the grammar of environmental law systems or, still, on the interface between environmental and socio-economic modelling and policy (legal) form and design.

Selected publications

The International Law of Energy (monograph on contract with CUP in the series Cambridge Studies on International and Comparative Law)

Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law (OUP, forthcoming 2017-2018, with E. Lees)

Environmental and Energy Law: International, European and Comparative Dimensions (three-volume compilation of major writings in these areas forthcoming in 2017 with Edward Elgar, in collaboration with E. Lees)

Law and the Anthropocene’, C-EENRG/College de France Joint Series, Working Paper 2016-4.

‘The Paris Climate Agreement: Less is More’ (2016) 59 German Yearbook of International Law, forthcoming 2017.

Climate Policy after the 2015 Climate Conference, Guest edited issue of Climate Policy, vol 17(1) (2016) (with J. Depledge, D. Reiner, E. Lees)

Modelling complex systems of heterogeneous agents to better design sustainability transitions policy’, (2016) 37 Global Environmental Change 102 (with J.-F Mercure, H. Pollitt, A. Bassi and N. Edwards)

‘International investment law and natural resource governance’, in E. Morgera and K. Kulovesi (eds.), Research Handbook on International Law and Natural Resources (Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, 2016), chapter 2 (also published as an E15 Think Piece for the Extractive Industries Group of the E15 Initiative, World Economic Forum/International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development/International Institute for Sustainable Development, 2015)

Foreign Investment and the Environment in International Law (CUP, 2012, reprint 2015)

‘Vers un droit international de l’énergie : Essai de cartographie’, in M. Kohen and D. Bentolila (eds.), Mélanges en l’honneur de Jean-Michel Jacquet (Paris: LexisNexis, 2013), chapter 18.

El régimen jurídico internacional relativo al cambio climático: Perspectivas y prospectivas, in: Organisation of American States (O.A.S.)/Inter-American Juridical Committee, Course on International Law (“Universalism and Regionalism at the Beginning of the 21st Century”), vol. XXXVI, 2010 (monographic course)

Teaching in the field of energy law

Over the years I have taught graduate level courses and seminars on ‘Energy in International Law’, ‘The International Law of Climate Change’, ‘International Environmental Law’ and ‘International Investment Law’, as well as more general courses addressing the foundations of energy law, including ‘Sovereignty over Natural Resources’ and ‘International Law through the Cases’.

See also Jorge’s biography on the C-EENRG website