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Irene Sacchetti is a Ph.D. Candidate in International Law at Nottingham Law School. She graduated cum laude with an integrated LLM from the University of Bologna (Italy); Irene is a former Research Fellow at the Potsdam Institute of Advanced Sustainability Studies. She previously worked for the Centre for Climate Law and Sustainability Studies, Czech Academy of Sciences and for the Geneva International Centre for Justice. Irene is part of the Postcolonial Research Centre of NTU, the Leiden Decolonising Collective and the IUCN WCEL amongst international initiatives for the protection of environment, human and animal rights, decoloniality and the law.

"My PhD project critically explores the gap in international law addressing the protection of climate ‘refugees’, those forced to flee their homelands because of the devastating impacts of climate change with the aim of offering an alternative reading of climate induced (im)mobility using ecofeminist and decolonial perspectives. The lenses of analysis are deeply grounded in climate justice concerns, whereby the root causes of increasing vulnerabilities to climate change impacts and related displacement, are investigated through historic and present responsibilities of Western countries. Finding legal responses to climate induced (im)mobility requires an interdisciplinary investigation, sensitive to the colonial origin of climate change and the Western hegemony on the epistemic foundations of international law.

In my view, adopting a climate justice approach to legal research requires to expand the level of inquiry beyond material impacts of climate change resulting in differentiated physical, social and economic exposure to climate change, by problematising existing international laws that have been (and are) complicit in creating such inequalities, and imposed a dominant thinking system that excludes non-Western voices. In fact, solutions to climate (im)mobilities infused by climate justice cannot be achieved without epistemic and cognitive justice.

Additionally, my research interests sit at the intersection between (non-) human rights and climate law, and revolve around planetary justice, the Kinocene, legal pluralism, decoloniality, knowledge co-creation."

List of Irene’s contributions:

  • 'Planetary Justice, Human Rights and the ECHR: Advancing Alternative Onto-Epistemologies to Face Climate-Related Challenges' European Yearbook of Human Rights, 2023 forthcoming

Contact details:



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