New Fellows Join Emmett Institute to Research and Advance Environmental Law

New Emmett Institute fellows include (left to right): Siyi Shen, Charles Corbett, and Benjamin Harris. Photo credit: Daniel Melling

This fall, the Emmett Institute at UCLA Law is welcoming four new fellows for two-year faculty appointments. Holly Buck, Charles Corbett, Benjamin Harris, and Siyi Shen bring a wide range of experience and training to the Institute, and will contribute to projects on climate engineering, environmental governance in China, and more. The new fellows join Harjot Kaur, an Emmett/Frankel Fellow in Environmental Law and Policy, and Jesse Reynolds, an Emmett/Frankel Climate Engineering Fellow in Environmental Law and Policy, both for 2018-2020.

The new fellows’ arrival marks an expansion of the Institute’s fellowship program, which for more than a decade has provided early-career law graduates with opportunities for research, advocacy, and teaching. Recent fellows have launched careers in academia, government, and more. Nicholas Bryner is now assistant professor of law at LSU Law in Baton Rouge and Meredith Hankins is now a deputy attorney general in the California Department of Justice.

  • Holly Buck joins us as an Emmett Climate Engineering Fellow in Environmental Law and Policy, where she will work with Ted Parson, the Dan and Rae Emmett Professor of Environmental Law, on a multi-year project examining the governance of climate engineering technology. Buck is cross-appointed with UCLA’s Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. Her research focuses on environmental sociology, science and technology studies, and international agriculture and rural development.

Buck is the author of “After Geoengineering” (2019), which examines possible futures for the world after intentional interventions in our climate system. Nature News selected the book as a science read in September, calling the book “original” and “thought-provoking.”

Buck holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland Baltimore County, a master’s of science in human ecology from Lund University in Sweden, and a Ph.D. in development sociology from Cornell University.

  • Charles Corbett joins us as Emmett Climate Engineering Fellow in Environmental Law and Policy, where he will also work with Parson, Buck, and Reynolds on our geoengineering project. The fellowship continues Corbett’s prior research on global warming and environmental policy. Corbett comes to UCLA Law after having completed clerkships at Earthjustice, the Clean Air Task Force, and the Environmental Defense Fund.

Corbett was awarded a T.A. Barron fellowship in environmental law at Harvard Law School, where he earned his J.D., and he has a bachelor’s degree from New York University.

  • Benjamin Harris joins the Institute as a Shapiro Fellow in Environmental Law and Policy. Harris clerked for Judge Steven Wilson on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, worked as a litigation associate at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, and was a law clerk in the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.

A double Bruin, Harris earned a B.S. in marine biology from UCLA and a J.D. from UCLA School of Law, where he was executive editor of the UCLA Journal of Environmental Law and Policy. His scholarship on issues regarding ocean life and groundwater collection has been published in that journal and in the Villanova Environmental Law Journal.

Harris has already kicked off his Legal Planet blogging career and contributed to an amici curiae brief prepared by the Frank G. Wells Environmental Law Clinic on behalf of the League of California Cities and California State Association of Counties in Chevron versus County of Monterey.

  • Siyi Shen joins us as an Emmett/Frankel Fellow in Environmental Law and Policy, and will work closely with Professor Alex Wang in research and engagement on environmental governance in China. Last month, Shen helped organize a two-week study tour of Los Angeles and North Carolina for a high-level delegation from China’s Ministry of Ecology & Environment to assist Chinese experts in their development of a more robust pollution permitting system, included briefings with UCLA Law faculty members and visits to South Coast Air Quality Management District, UCLA Facilities, and the Marathon Refinery in Wilmington, CA.

Shen has worked on international and comparative environmental law and policy and U.S. domestic environmental law. Her research focuses on climate and energy, climate finance, and environmental justice. She previously served as a global environmental law fellow at Pace University’s Elisabeth Haub School of Law and as a legal fellow at the Center for International Environmental Law.

Shen holds an LL.B. from Tongji University Law School in China, a J.D. from Vanderbilt University Law School, and LL.M. degrees from UC Berkeley School of Law and Pace.

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About Daniel

Daniel Melling

Daniel Melling is communications manager for the Emmett Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at UCLA School of Law.…

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