Environmental Law Education Awards


Distinguished Education Award Senior Faculty

Catherine Iorns Magallanes

Catherine Iorns Magallanes

Catherine Iorns is a Reader in the School of Law at Victoria University of Wellington, Aotearoa New Zealand. She has more than 25 years' experience teaching a range of subjects, including statutory interpretation, indigenous rights, and international law, in addition to a range of environmental law courses. Catherine has focused on pedagogy from the beginning of her career, with presentations and papers on teaching international law, for example, in the 1990s. This has continued today, with her recently undertaking a Higher Education Learning and Teaching course, writing on changing ideas of effective innovations in environmental law teaching.

Catherine is also a well-respected researcher in both indigenous rights and environmental law. Her research achievements include ‘A’ rankings for her written outputs, two writing awards for environmental law papers from the New Zealand Resource Management Law Association, and citations in decisions by the New Zealand EPA. She has recently held external research contracts in relation to precaution and ecosystem-based management, and a current National Science Challenge contract in relation to climate adaptation.

Catherine is also a national Board member of Amnesty International Aotearoa New Zealand, and the Academic Advisor to the New Zealand Council of Legal Education. She is a member of the International Law Association Committee on the Implementation of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a member of the IUCN World Commission on Environmental Law, and a member of the Bioethics Panel for the New Zealand Biological Heritage National Science Challenge. 

Distinguished Education Award Emerging Faculty

Estair Van Wagner

Estair Van Wagner

Estair Van Wagner is an assistant professor at Osgoode Hall Law School where she is a co-director of the Environmental Justice and Sustainability Clinic. Her research and teaching interests are in the areas of property, land use planning, and natural resource law. Estair has developed a unique place-based approach to legal education, building on her relational approach to research about land use conflicts and people-place relations. She is a member of the organizing committee for Osgoode’s Anishinaabe law camp, developed in partnership with the Chippewas of Nawash First Nation.

Prior to joining Osgoode, Estair was a lecturer at the Victoria University of Wellington Faculty of Law, where she taught Property, Natural Resource, and Resource Management Law. Her contribution to legal education at VUW was recognized through a university-wide Teaching and Learning Grant, awarded to support her place-based approach to land use law subjects, including a qualitative study of the role of technology and community-engaged learning in legal education. The results of the study were the subject of a special section of Resource Management Theory and Practice and an article in a special edition of the Environmental and Planning Law Journal.

Estair is currently a co-investigator in a qualitative study examining Indigenous land rights and environmental jurisdiction on private forest land, funded by a Social Science and Humanities Research Council Insight Grant. She is also currently involved in research about mining and Indigenous communities in both Aotearoa New Zealand and Canada. Estair reimagined a major climate change decision of the New Zealand Supreme Court as a judgment writer in the 2017 Feminist Judgments Project Aotearoa. She has published widely on the relationship between property, land use planning, and environmental law.