Dr Mary Dobbs

Biography

Mary joined the Department of Law in September 2020. Previously, she worked as a lecturer and then senior lecturer in Queen’s University Belfast since 2012. She specialises in environmental law & governance, agriculture and genetically modified crops - in particular within the EU, but also more broadly.  Her current research includes focussing on these issues in the context of Brexit. She has published extensively in the field, engages with stakeholders and through giving evidence at parliamentary inquiries, and is a member of organisations such as Brexit and Environment and the Future Earth Ireland committee in the Royal Irish Academy. Mary was part of a successful Jean Monnet Network on soft law in the EU Member States and a Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence on ’Tensions at the Fringes of Europe’.
She holds a PhD on the precautionary principle from UCD (2013), as well as a BCL (Law with French Law) from UCD and a certificat superieur en droit francais from Paris II (Pantheon-Assas) 
She will be teaching courses on equity, trusts and environmental matters.
Mary welcomes potential research students and collaborations regarding environmental law/governance, risk regulation and related areas - including focusses on Brexit/cross-border issues.

Research Interests

My main research interests lie in the area of environmental governance, e.g. regarding issues of agriculture, GMOs and risk regulation. I focus on both theoretical aspects (e.g. legitimacy, subsidiarity and sustainability) and the practical aspects (e.g. the impacts on farming and biodiversity or the challenges of transnational governance). Due to the nature of both the environment and agriculture, my research engages in a wide range of legal fields regarding for instance EU and national constitutional law, public international law, intellectual property law, trade law, health law and much more. Brexit has become a significant focus for obvious reasons in recent years - drawing many of these strands together.

It may seem pretty unwieldy, but the interlinkages are part of what makes it interesting and cannot be ignored. 

Peer Reviewed Journals

  Year Publication
2020 'National governance of public health responses in a pandemic?'
Mary Dobbs (2020) 'National governance of public health responses in a pandemic?'. European Journal of Risk Regulation, 11 (2):240-248 [DOI] [Details]
2019 '* Out of the frying pan, into the fire? Environmental governance vulnerabilities in post-Brexit Northern Ireland'
C. Brennan, M. Dobbs and V. Gravey (2019) '* Out of the frying pan, into the fire? Environmental governance vulnerabilities in post-Brexit Northern Ireland'. European Environmental Law Review, 21 (2):84-110 [DOI] [Details]
2017 'Genetically Modified Crops, Agricultural Sustainability and National OptOuts – Enclosure as the Loophole?'
M. Dobbs (2017) 'Genetically Modified Crops, Agricultural Sustainability and National OptOuts – Enclosure as the Loophole?'. Common Market Law Review, 54 (4):1093-1122 [Details]
2016 'Attaining Subsidiarity-based Multilevel Governance of Genetically Modified Cultivation?'
M. Dobbs (2016) 'Attaining Subsidiarity-based Multilevel Governance of Genetically Modified Cultivation?'. Journal of Environmental Law, 28 (2):245-273 [Details]
2015 'The Shifting Battleground of Article 4(2) TEU: Evolving National Identities and the corresponding need for EU management?'
M. Dobbs (2015) 'The Shifting Battleground of Article 4(2) TEU: Evolving National Identities and the corresponding need for EU management?'. Web Journal of Current Legal Issues, 21 (2) [Details]
2014 'Sovereignty, Article 4(2) TEU and the Respect of National Identities: Swinging the Balance of Power in Favour of the Member States?'
M. Dobbs (2014) 'Sovereignty, Article 4(2) TEU and the Respect of National Identities: Swinging the Balance of Power in Favour of the Member States?'. The Yearbook of European Law, 33 (1):298-334 [Details]
2011 'Excluding Coexistence of GMOs? The Impact of the EU Commission's 2010 Recommendation on Coexistence'
M. Dobbs (2011) 'Excluding Coexistence of GMOs? The Impact of the EU Commission's 2010 Recommendation on Coexistence'. Review of European Community and International Environmental Law, 20 (2):180-193 [Details]
2011 '*Transforming Researchers into Educators: Some Reflections on the University College Dublin School of Law Syllabus Design Workshop 2010’'
M. Dobbs, D. Casey, A. Greene, J. Lawless and N. Mullholland (2011) '*Transforming Researchers into Educators: Some Reflections on the University College Dublin School of Law Syllabus Design Workshop 2010’'. German Law Journal, 12 (9):1510-1528 [Details]
2010 'Legalising General Prohibitions on Cultivation of Genetically Modified Organisms'
M. Dobbs (2010) 'Legalising General Prohibitions on Cultivation of Genetically Modified Organisms'. German Law Journal, 11 (12):1347-1372 [Details]

Book Chapters

  Year Publication
2021 '*EU Soft Law in the UK on the Eve of Brexit: (not) Much Ado About Nothing?'
M. Dobbs and O. Stefan (2021) '*EU Soft Law in the UK on the Eve of Brexit: (not) Much Ado About Nothing?' In: M. Eliantonio, E. Korkea-aho and O. Stefan (eds). EU Soft Law in Member States: Theoretical Findings and Empirical Evidence. London: Bloomsbury/Hart. [Details]
2021 'Northern Ireland's agricultural quagmire: how to develop a sustainable agricultural policy?'
Mary Dobbs (2021) 'Northern Ireland's agricultural quagmire: how to develop a sustainable agricultural policy?' In: Irene Anonpoulos, Matthew Bell, Aleksandsa Cavoski and Ludivine Petetin (eds). Sustainable Agriculture in post-Brexit UK. Oxford: Routledge. [Details]
2019 'The Challenges for the Environment across the Island'
M. Dobbs (2019) 'The Challenges for the Environment across the Island' In: J. Mair, S. Mccabe, N. Fowler and L. Budd (eds). Brexit and Northern Ireland – Bordering on Confusion?. London: Bite-sized Books. [Details]
2016 'Regulating Genetically Modified Organisms in Ireland – Laissez faire approach?'
M. Dobbs (2016) 'Regulating Genetically Modified Organisms in Ireland – Laissez faire approach?' In: R. Norer (eds). Genetic Technology in the Light of Food Security and Food Safety. New York: Springer. [Details]
2015 'Co-existence of GMOs in the EU – A Veritable Choice for Whom?'
M. Dobbs (2015) 'Co-existence of GMOs in the EU – A Veritable Choice for Whom?' In: M. Cardwell and J. McMahon (eds). Research Handbook on EU Agriculture Law. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. [Details]

Books

  Year Publication
2021 * Brexit and Agriculture (undertaking final revisions).
Ludivine Petetin and Mary Dobbs (2021) * Brexit and Agriculture (undertaking final revisions). Oxford: Routledge. [Details]

Conference Contributions

  Year Publication
2021 The Protocol and the Environment.
M. Dobbs (2021) The Protocol and the Environment. [Invited Oral Presentation], Environmental implications - the NI Protocol, the TCA and UK developments, Belfast/Dublin , 15-FEB-21 - 15-FEB-21 [Details]
2020 Ireland-Northern Ireland Protocol to the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement.
M. Dobbs (2020) Ireland-Northern Ireland Protocol to the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement. [Invited Oral Presentation], ‘The NI Protocol, trade and environmental governance’, Belfast , 01-DEC-20 [Details]
2020 COVID-19 and Legal Responses on the Island of Ireland.
M. Dobbs (2020) COVID-19 and Legal Responses on the Island of Ireland. [Oral Presentation], Governance of Epidemiological Units: Localised to Centralised Approaches, Virtual , 11-DEC-20 [Details]

Published Reports

  Year Publication
2021 * Agriculture: environment, food and animal health standards.
Mary Dobbs and Ludivine Petetin (2021) * Agriculture: environment, food and animal health standards. UK in a Changing Europe, London. [Details]

Blog

  Year Publication
2019 Environmental principles in the Environment Bill.
Mary Dobbs (2019) Environmental principles in the Environment Bill. Blog [Details]
2015 ‘Can you really be GM-free? Why new European laws pose a moral dilemma’.
M. Dobbs (2015) ‘Can you really be GM-free? Why new European laws pose a moral dilemma’. Blog [Details]
2015 Cultures OGM: trêve fragile en Europe.
M. Dobbs (2015) Cultures OGM: trêve fragile en Europe. Blog [Details]
2015 GM crops: an uneasy truce hangs over Europe.
M. Dobbs (2015) GM crops: an uneasy truce hangs over Europe. Blog [Details]
2018 *Collaborating for Agricultural Sustainability.
Ludivine Petetin and Mary Dobbs (2018) *Collaborating for Agricultural Sustainability. Blog [Details]
2019 * Reality bites: The implications of scrutiny-free environmental law reform in Northern Ireland after Brexit.
C. Brennan and M.Dobbs (2019) * Reality bites: The implications of scrutiny-free environmental law reform in Northern Ireland after Brexit. Blog [Details]

Invited Review Articles

  Year Publication
2018 Ines Hätel, Roman Budzinowski (Eds.), Food Security, Food Safety, Food Quality. Current Developments and Challenges in European Union Law. Baden-Baden/Oxford: Nomos/Hart Publishing, 2017.
M. Dobbs (2018) Ines Hätel, Roman Budzinowski (Eds.), Food Security, Food Safety, Food Quality. Current Developments and Challenges in European Union Law. Baden-Baden/Oxford: Nomos/Hart Publishing, 2017. Invited Review Articles [Details]
2018 Joanne Blennerhassett, A Comparative Examination of Multi-Party Actions: The Case of Environmental Mass Harm, Civil Justice Series, (Hart Publishing, 2016).
Mary Dobbs (2018) Joanne Blennerhassett, A Comparative Examination of Multi-Party Actions: The Case of Environmental Mass Harm, Civil Justice Series, (Hart Publishing, 2016). Invited Review Articles [Details]

Policy Contribution

  Year Publication
2020 Invited oral evidence to Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture, Environmental and Rural Affairs Committee on the Agriculture Bill.
M. Dobbs (2020) Invited oral evidence to Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture, Environmental and Rural Affairs Committee on the Agriculture Bill. Policy Contribution [Details]
2019 *Written submission to the EFRA & EAC Committees on the Environment (Principles and Governance) Bill.
M. Dobbs & L. Petetin (2019) *Written submission to the EFRA & EAC Committees on the Environment (Principles and Governance) Bill. Policy Contribution [Details]
2020 Invited Oral evidence to Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture, Environmental and Rural Affairs Committee on the Environment Bill.
M. Dobbs (2020) Invited Oral evidence to Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture, Environmental and Rural Affairs Committee on the Environment Bill. Policy Contribution [Details]
2020 Invited written evidence to Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture, Environmental and Rural Affairs Committee on the Environment Bill.
M. Dobbs (2020) Invited written evidence to Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture, Environmental and Rural Affairs Committee on the Environment Bill. Policy Contribution [Details]
2019 Invited Oral evidence to the Welsh Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee on the Environment Bill.
M. Dobbs (2019) Invited Oral evidence to the Welsh Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee on the Environment Bill. Policy Contribution [Details]
2018 *The Future of Environmental Governance in Northern Ireland.
C. Brennan, M. Dobbs, V. Gravey and A. Ui Bhroin (2018) *The Future of Environmental Governance in Northern Ireland. Policy Contribution [Details]
2018 Invited oral evidence to the Welsh Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee on the UK Agriculture Bill.
M. Dobbs (2018) Invited oral evidence to the Welsh Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee on the UK Agriculture Bill. Policy Contribution [Details]
2018 Invited oral evidence to the House of Commons Northern Ireland Affairs Committee Inquiry on ‘Brexit and Northern Ireland: Agriculture’.
M. Dobbs (2018) Invited oral evidence to the House of Commons Northern Ireland Affairs Committee Inquiry on ‘Brexit and Northern Ireland: Agriculture’. Policy Contribution [Details]

Radio Presentation

  Year Publication
2018 'MOT tests post-Brexit' on BBC NI Drivetime Evening Extra.
M. Dobbs (2018) 'MOT tests post-Brexit' on BBC NI Drivetime Evening Extra. Radio Presentation [Details]

Video recording / TV

  Year Publication
2020 Sustainability, Law and Borders.
M. Dobbs (2020) Sustainability, Law and Borders. Video recording / TV [Details]

Employment

  Employer Position From / To
Athlone Institute of Technology External Examiner 30-SEP-17 / 30-SEP-20
Queen's University of Belfast Lecturer/Senior Lecturer 01-AUG-12 / 31-AUG-20

Committees

  Committee Function From / To
Future Earth Ireland (in the Royal Irish Academy) Committee Member 2019 /

Professional Associations

  Association Function From / To
Brexit and Environment Associate Member 01-AUG-18 /

Education

  Year Institution Qualification Subject
2013 University College Dublin PhD Law - ‘The Viability of the Precautionary Principle: Legitimate and Justiciable?’
2006 University College Dublin BCL (Law with French Law) Law
2005 Université Paris II, Panthéon-Assas Certificat supérieur en droit français Law
2014 Queen's University of Belfast Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education Teaching Education

Languages

  Language Reading Writing Speaking
French Fluent Functional Functional