|Assistant Professor in Law in the Durham Law School|
|Fellow in the Centre for Sustainable Development Law and Policy|
|Assistant Professor in Law in Durham CELLS (Centre for Ethics and Law in the Life Sciences)|
Dr Kim Bouwer joined Durham Law School in 2021. She holds an LLB from the University of the Witwatersrand (Johannesburg) and an LLM from the University of London. She completed her PhD at UCL in 2016. She has held posts or visiting positions at a variety of global institutions, including UCL, the European University Institute, the University of the Witwatersrand, KCL, and the University of Exeter.
Before her doctoral research, Dr Bouwer worked as a lawyer. She trained conducting legal community service in Johannesburg, then worked as an attorney in South Africa. Thereafter, Dr Bouwer worked as a solicitor at several Legal 500 firms in London, conducting claimant public interest litigation.
At Durham, Dr Bouwer was the co-Director of CELLS (Centre for Ethics and Law in the Life Sciences) in 2021-22. She has been an active member of the Law School’s Curriculum Review team in 2022-23. Her contributions include the need for climate education as well as changes to the legal profession following the deregulation of the law degree.
Since 2022 Dr Bouwer has been the Law School’s climate education co-ordinator. This is an ongoing role, which she has shaped relying on her previous teaching and research mainstreaming climate change in the core law degree. Dr Bouwer identified key climate competencies and, with the core convenors, worked to incorporate these as part of the students’ compulsory legal education. A project report was prepared in June 2023 and may be found on her profile below.
Since 2023 Dr Bouwer has also been the Fellows’ Representative in the Durham Energy Institute.
At previous institutions Dr Bouwer’s citizenship roles have included LLM Programme Director (Strathclyde), Covid Learning Design Team (Exeter), and Decolonisation Committee and Steering Group Member (Exeter).
Dr Bouwer’s broader research interests lie in energy and climate change law and private law. She is particularly interested in litigation in the context of climate change, the regulation and governance of energy efficiency and low carbon technologies, and climate finance. At present her research focuses mainly on climate litigation, including in its relationship with activism.
From 2019 – 2023 Dr Bouwer led a project exploring the nature of and possibilities for climate litigation on the African continent. The project was underpinned by the core value that any litigation about climate on the African continent should serve the interests and priorities of the people of Africa. It brought together partners and authors from 15 different countries who explored a variety of perspectives on the subject matter. The project outputs included online engagement workshops (including in August 2020 and 2021), a co-edited collection on the theme, published by Carbon and Climate Law Review in 2021, and a co-edited collection with Bristol University Press which will be published early in 2024. She has also published several solo-authored journal articles on the theme. She is currently exploring pathways to impact from this project.
In 2018 Dr Bouwer published an article with the Journal of Environmental Law, which made a case for more attention on mundane legal disputes which are somehow related to climate change. In her current research, she has returned to this theme. She is working on a monograph – under contract with Cambridge University Press – which explores this concept in relation to specific categories of caselaw.
Dr Bouwer is the national rapporteur for the UK on the Corporate Climate Litigation project run through the British Institute of International and Comparative Law. She is also a Theme Lead in for the 2023 Climate Cohort of the Association of Commonwealth Universities.
Dr Bouwer retains an interest in tort doctrine and theory, and scholarship exploring the relationship between private interests and the public good in private law.
For the Durham Law School LLB, Dr Bouwer contributes lectures and seminars on the undergraduate Tort course, where she has also acted as convenor. She contributes lectures and seminars on Gender, Law and Society. Dr Bouwer convenes and co-teaches Global Environmental Law on the LLM, and supervises research at LLB and LLM level. She is on research leave in the 2023/4 academic year and will return to teaching in October 2024.
In other institutions at undergraduate level Dr Bouwer has taught Torts (also as convenor), Land Law (also as convenor) and environmental law and planning. At postgraduate level she has taught Climate Law (convenor), Energy and Natural Resources Law (convenor), Legal Methods (convenor), and across various modules in energy and environmental law.
- Bouwer, K. (2023). Climate change litigation: Global perspectives By Ivano Alogna, Christine Bakker, Jean‐Pierre Gauci (Eds.), Brill. 2021. pp. 542. Review of European, Comparative & International Environmental Law, https://doi.org/10.1111/reel.12519
- Bouwer, K. (2022). Climate Change Litigation in the Asia Pacific, Edited by Jolene Lin and Douglas A. Kysar Published by Cambridge University Press, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1111/reel.12435
Chapter in book
- Bouwer, K., Etemire, U., Field, T., & Jegede, A. (in press). Africa, Climate Justice and the Courts. In K. Bouwer, U. Etemire, T. Field, & A. Jegede (Eds.), Climate Litigation and Justice in Africa. Bristol University Press
- Bouwer, K., & Gimson, R. (2022). Provoking McAuslan: Planning Law and Property Rights. In M. Lee, & C. Abbot (Eds.), Taking English Planning Law Scholarship Seriously. UCL Press
- Bouwer, K. (2021). Climate Change and the Individual in the United Kingdom. In F. Sindico, & M. M. Mbengue (Eds.), Comparative Climate Change Litigation: Beyond the Usual Suspects. Springer Verlag
- Savaresi, A., & Bouwer, K. (2018). Equity and justice in climate change law and policy: A role for benefit-sharing. In T. Jafry, M. Mikulewicz, & K. Helwig (Eds.), Routledge Handbook of Climate Justice. Routledge
- Bouwer, K., Etemire, U., Field, T., & Jegede, A. (Eds.). (in press). Climate Litigation and Justice in Africa. Bristol University Press
- Bouwer, K., & Field, T. (Eds.). (2021). Special Issue: The Emergence of Climate Litigation in Africa. Lexxion
- Bouwer, K., John, E., Luke, O., & Rozhan, N. A. (in press). ‘Climate Change isn’t Optional’: Climate Change in the Core Law Curriculum. Legal Studies, https://doi.org/10.1017/lst.2022.35
- Bouwer, K. (2022). The Influence of Human Rights on Climate Litigation in Africa. Journal of Human Rights and the Environment, 13(1), 157-177. https://doi.org/10.4337/jhre.2022.01.07
- Bouwer, K., & Field, T. (2021). The Emergence of Climate Litigation in Africa. https://doi.org/10.21552/cclr/2021/2/3
- Bouwer, K. (2021). Substantial Justice?: Transnational Torts as Climate Litigation. https://doi.org/10.21552/cclr/2021/2/9
- Bouwer, K. (2021). Possibilities for Justice and Equity in Human Rights and Climate Law: Benefit-Sharing in Climate Finance. Climate Law, 11(1), 1-44. https://doi.org/10.1163/18786561-11010001
- Bouwer, K. (2020). Lessons from a Distorted Metaphor: The Holy Grail of Climate Litigation. Transnational Environmental Law, 9(2), 347 - 378
- Bouwer, K. (2018). Insights for Climate Technology Transfer from International Environmental and Human Rights Law. Journal of Intellectual Property Rights, 23(1),
- Bouwer, K. (2018). The Unsexy Future of Climate Change Litigation. Journal of Environmental Law, 30(3), https://doi.org/10.1093/jel/eqy017
- change litigation
Other (Digital/Visual Media)
- Bouwer, K. (in press). Climate Litigation and Climate Activism. [Video]
- Bouwer, K. (2022). Net Zero Rule of Law: Climate Consciousness and Legal Education. [Blog]
- Bouwer, K. (2015). Climate consciousness in daily legal practice. [Blog]
- Bouwer, K., Allen, T., Buck, J., Frantziou, E., Neuvonen, P., Sakharova, I., & Wang, Y. (2023). Climate Education in the Core at Durham Law School. [No known commissioning body]
- Bouwer, K. (2023). BIICL Corporate Climate Litigation UK Report. British Institute of International and Comparative Law
- Bouwer, K., & Setzer, J. (2020). Climate Litigation as Climate Activism: What Works?. [No known commissioning body]