Faculty

Faculty Profile

MATSUMOTO Mitsuo
Associate Professor

Research Topics

Administrative Law, Environmental Law, Water Law, and Legal Philosophy

Research Introduction and Message

Systemazation water law ; as a measure to respond to the urgent need for integrated governance of waters and as an alternative environmental law

    My main research areas are administrative law, environmental law (with an occasional reference to legal philosophy), and water law. Recently, my main focus has been on the systematization of Japanese water law from comparative legal perspective with that of the United States. Water related issues have been attracting attention of both the public and the natural scientists, but there are less than 10 legal scholars specializing in water law in Japan.

   Putting aside other water related issues such as flood management and th environment, issues on water resources can be broadly divided into two categories ; issues that arise when people divert water from or return wastewater to the environment and issues that arise after diversion from and before return to the environment (water supply and sewerage issues).

   Currently, I am conducting research on the former. While the financial burden and the negative aspects of socioeconomic and environmental impacts of dams and other artificial infrastructures has become more evident, the integration of the governance of waters to balance the conflicting needs is an imeperative; to mitigate the damage from flood, to adjust the supply and demand of water, and to develop alternative sources of enegy to nuclear power with less impact to the environment of the river basin. Thus, there is a strong need for the development of legal frameworks to mitigate those burden and impacts, either through water transfer (mostly from agricultural use to drinking use and industrial use) or sustainable use of groundwater (mostly design of local ordinances because there are no comprehensive national legislatioin onthe use of groundwater).

   Furthermore, environmental law in Japan started out from tort law and administrative regulations but there exist surprisingly little researches into the natural resources law (or law for sustainable use of the natural environment). The system of water rights can be well understood in relation with land ownership. This approach gives a better insight to systematize naural resources law, an alternative system of environmental law.

    I invite you to join me to form Japan's best environmental law team by pursuing the practical and theoretical significance of environmental law through water law.

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