Book launch Compendium Rights of Nature at Ocean Space, Venice

With: Jessica den Outer, Laura Burger, Daphina Misiedjan, Klaas Kuitenbrouwer, Justin Sobion and Shrishtee Bajpai. Moderated by Harpo ‘t Hart

In our time of ecological crisis, the law may provide some new and much-needed perspective. Worldwide, an increasing number of natural entities — forests, rivers, mountains, even Mother Earth herself — are being recognized as so-called legal persons. In this legal revolution, nature is no longer seen as an object to be used and discarded, but rather as a subject with intrinsic value and, importantly, legally enforceable rights.

The Embassy of the North Sea commissioned Laura Burgers and Jessica den Outer to author this Compendium, which focuses on one or two case-studies per continent. Each case-study offers a sketch of the different ways in which the rights of nature have been recognized, with the authors detailing the context and world view underpinning those rights, as well as their current implementation and enforcement.

Both dr. Laura Burgers and Jessica den Outer are experts on the rights of nature within the UN Network ‘Harmony with Nature’.

Read more about the Compendium Rights of Nature here.

launch at ocean space Venice

On the occasion of the launch, part of the public programme of Who is We? the Netherlands official contribution to La Biennale di Venezia, we will dive into questions like: how do the concepts of different indigenous cultures translate to legal instruments? How to work with the inevitable frictions between indigenous traditions and the legal systems that, to some extent, all derived of European models and their cultural preferences? And how to organise rights of nature in European jurisdictions whose cultures developed the narrative of separation between humans and nature?

Dr. Daphina Misiedjan will interview Justin Sobion (doctoral candidate Environmental Law, University of Auckland) about rights of nature case-studies in New Zealand, Shrishtee Bajpai (researcher and activist) about cases in Bangladesh and Klaas Kuitenbrouwer (senior researcher at Het Nieuwe Instituut) about Zoöp in the Netherlands. Followed by a discussion with Daphina Misiedjan, Jessica den Outer and Laura Burgers about the relation between different indigenous worldviews and their tactics for implementing legal standing for nonhuman life.

The morning will close with a short introduction to the Zoöp model by Klaas Kuitenbrouwer. This model is designed to allow organisations to collaborate with (representatives of) non-human life and to realise the principles and effects of the Rights of Nature within their own operational sphere. Zoöps work towards the realisation of a regenerative economy. Read more about Zoöp here..


— Thursday 23 September 2021, 9.45 am

— The launch of the compendium is part of the programme How to Do a Zoöp, organized and curated by Het Nieuwe Instituut during The Pavilion Days from 23 to 24 September 2021, part of the official Dutch contribution to the 17th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia.

— Location: Ocean Space, collaborative platform for Ocean Imagination and Ocean Action

— Follow the live stream of the launch ofthe compendium Rights of Nature and the Zoöp legal framework at

Compendium #1 Rights of Nature. Case studies from six continents

Embassy of the North Sea, Laura Burgers & Jessica den Outer © 2021

Graphic design: Corine Datema

Translations: Edward Jacobson / Vuurtoren Editing; printer: Zwaan Lenoir

Publication date: 23 September, 2021;  Price: 15,00 €, excl shipping

Order your copy here.