25 November 2021
The Africa Institute for Environmental Law (AIEL)’s plans to launch the African Journal on Environmental Law and Policy are at an advanced stage. AIEL has highlighted that the journal is a strategic response to provide cutting edge scientific knowledge on environmental law and policy in Africa.
Speaking during the Training and Consultative workshop convened by AIEL on the 24th and 25th of November 2021 and held in Kwekwe, ZELA Board Chair, Professor Tumai Murombo indicated that there are few journals published in Zimbabwe specifically focusing on environmental law and natural resources governance.
“There are few specialised journals focusing in the areas of law and resource governance. Since the establishment of the Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association in 2000 and as time went by, we noted that the work we were doing was benefiting mostly those who came into contact with our programmes but there was scope to expand it including ensuring that we influence the development of environmental law and policy and implementation of the same.”
Professor Murombo added that AIEL conceived the idea of establishing a journal as an avenue through which the Institute (AIEL) will be able to advance knowledge, provide a platform to test, old, new, and emerging theories, practices and world views in relation to environmental law and natural resource governance.
“The idea behind the journal particularly in the field of law is to enable the development of theories, testing theories, including enabling policy makers to access some of those findings and use them to adapt, change laws, policies and programmes so that they resonate with emerging principles and good practices in the management of the environment and natural resources.”
Dr Simeoni Sungi an Associate Professor of Criminal Justice at the United States International University in Nairobi, Kenya also managed to share his experiences on journal management drawing lessons from the Africa Journal on Crime and Justice housed in the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the United States International University. He noted that there are several journals creeping up but there have not been clear instructions on how to run a journal. Therefore, the AIEL workshop comes in handy. He also provided clear guidelines on journal management drawing lessons from the Africa Journal on Crime and Justice.
The meeting also saw the launch of the Environmental Law and Natural Resource Governance (ELNRG) Research Grant. The goal of this grant is to promote knowledge generation by young African researchers in critical themes such as environmental conservation and natural resource governance.
The AIEL Coordinator, Farai Mutondoro, stated that the Institute recognizes that there are serious gaps in the funding of research and development in the field of environmental management and natural resource governance. To bridge the funding gap, the grant will support research by three postgraduate students drawn from any one of the Universities in Zimbabwe and this will be on an annual basis.
The Africa Institute for Environmental Law (AIEL) is a research arm of the Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association (ZELA).