Research subjects

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Research subjects

Public economic law accounts for an increasing share of research projects at Pau Droit Public as its role in regulating society has grown considerably. Favored areas of research include:

  • Public sector contracts.
  • Planning.
  • Network infrastructure (transportation, energy, new technologies).
  • Public service contracts, and in particular those relating to: the treatment of household waste, water distribution, sanitation, port and airport infrastructure, school transportation.
  • The internationalization and communitization of energy performance diagnoses (DPE).
  • The regulation and monitoring of private economic activity.
  • Responses to failure to perform energy performance diagnoses (administrative sanctions, legal disputes, liability, etc.).

Within this general theme, we decided to focus on the subject of energy law, with the aim of developing a new research program. For the UPPA, energy law has the advantage of overlapping with a range of subjects already addressed by our researchers (combining human rights, local authorities’ rights and the legal framework governing their policies – urban planning, environmental law, etc.).

As energy becomes essential from a political, strategic, geopolitical, economic, industrial and social point of view, so do its legal aspects. This law, which remains in the early stages of its development, is likely to remain a focus of our legal science for many years to come and a major challenge in terms of public policies, from a national, European and also international point of view.

The major shifts in energy sources which are currently under way and set to continue in the future raise several interesting questions in various legal fields. Take for example the fundamental right of each individual to access energy. This can be seen as a geographic access right, which depends on suitable territorial planning. It is also an economic access right, which requires the involvement of local authorities to set energy prices, implement mechanisms to promote “social access” for the less well off, and regulate market issues. The legal framework of the use of fossil fuels and renewable energy sources also provides a wealth of research opportunities focusing on sustainable development and the protection of the environment.

The birth of a new law, such is the case of energy access law, has considerable development potential. For these reasons, Pau Droit Public has decided to develop a research program covering energy law to highlight future areas of research which will represent major challenges to public policy in the future.