Dr Joseph Wenta

Dr Joseph Wenta


Newcastle Law School (Law)

Career Summary


Dr Joseph Wenta joined Newcastle Law School as a lecturer in January 2020. Prior to his appointment at the University of Newcastle, Joe worked as a sessional academic at the Faculty of Law, University of Tasmania (2015-2019), and was previously an Associate Lecturer and sessional academic at Newcastle Law School (2008-2015).

Joe has a diverse array of research interests ranging from international climate and environmental governance to Australian public law. His PhD research, entitled 'Just Resilience in Australia's Climate Adaptation Laws' examines the readiness of Australian laws to support flexible and equitable responses to climate impacts. He has previously published on aspects of international climate governance and Australian constitutional and administrative law in highly regarded national and international journals.

Joe has extensive teaching experience across several compulsory subjects including Environmental Law, Criminal Law and Procedure, Administrative and Constitutional Law, and foundational courses such as Legal System and Method. He adopts a student-centred approach to learning and teaching, using a diverse range of learning activities to support students in developing their own skills in independent, life-long learning.

Joe is currently the Managing Editor of the Newcastle Law Review, and also performs service roles related to competitive mooting and the LLB program. He has considerable experience in University administration, having previously contributed to a range of governance activities at the school, faculty and university level.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Tasmania
  • Bachelor of Science (Forensic) (Honours), University of Newcastle
  • Bachelor of Laws (Honours), University of Newcastle
  • Graduate Certificate in Research, University of Tasmania


  • Administrative Law
  • Climate Adaptation Law
  • Climate Change Law
  • Climate Justice
  • Constitutional Law
  • Environmental Justice
  • Resilience Thinking and Law

Fields of Research

Code Description Percentage
480202 Climate change law 35
480405 Law and society and socio-legal research 45
480701 Administrative law 20

Professional Experience

UON Appointment

Title Organisation / Department
Lecturer University of Newcastle
Newcastle Law School


For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.

Chapter (1 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2019 Wenta J, McDonald J, 'The Role of Law and Legal Systems in Climate Change Adaptation Policy', Research Handbook on Climate Change Adaptation Policy, Edward Elgar Publishing, United Kingdom 69-90 (2019)
DOI 10.4337/9781786432520.00011

Journal article (6 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2019 Pickering J, McGee JS, Karlsson-Vinkhuyzen SI, Wenta J, 'Global Climate Governance Between Hard and Soft Law: Can the Paris Agreement's "Creme Brulee' Approach Enhance Ecological Reflexivity?', JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL LAW, 31 1-28 (2019)
DOI 10.1093/jel/eqy018
Citations Scopus - 3Web of Science - 4
2019 Wenta J, McDonald J, McGee JS, 'Enhancing Resilience and Justice in Climate Adaptation Laws', TRANSNATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL LAW, 8 89-118 (2019)
DOI 10.1017/S2047102518000286
Citations Scopus - 5Web of Science - 4
2016 Wenta J, McGee J, Phelan L, 'Can a Regional Insurance Mechanism Enhance Resilience to Slow Onset Impacts of Climate Change', University of Tasmania Law Review, 35 23-57 (2016)
2014 McGee JS, Wenta J, 'Technology Transfer Institutions in Global Climate Governance: The Tension between Equity Principles and Market Allocation', Review of European, Comparative & International Environmental Law, 23 367-381 (2014) [C1]
DOI 10.1111/reel.12075
Citations Scopus - 4
2014 McGee J, Phelan L, Wenta J, 'Writing the Fine Print: Developing Regional Insurance for Climate Change Adaptation in the Pacific', Melbourne Journal of International Law, 15 444-472 (2014) [C1]
Co-authors Liam Phelan
2012 Wenta JP, 'The integrity branch of government and the separation of judicial power', AIAL Forum, - 42-67 (2012) [C2]
Show 3 more journal articles

Grants and Funding


Number of grants 1
Total funding $2,000

Click on a grant title below to expand the full details for that specific grant.

20211 grants / $2,000

Enhancing Australian Sustainability$2,000

Funding body: College of Human and Social Futures, University of Newcastle

Funding body College of Human and Social Futures, University of Newcastle
Project Team

Dr Joseph Wenta

Scheme CHSF New Start Grant
Role Lead
Funding Start 2021
Funding Finish 2021
Type Of Funding Internal
Category INTE

Research Supervision

Number of supervisions


Current Supervision

Commenced Level of Study Research Title Program Supervisor Type
2021 PhD Food Security, Farmers' Rights and the Governance of Local Knowledge in India: An Equitable Approach PhD (Law), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle Principal Supervisor
2021 Honours Per- and Poly-fluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Contamination: An Ecological and Legal Crisis in Australia (working title) Law, Newcastle Law School, University of Newcastle, Australia Sole Supervisor
2020 PhD Legal Framework for Resilient and Sustainable Coastal Zones PhD (Law), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle Principal Supervisor
2020 PhD Road to Freedom: A Critical Analysis of Post-Conviction Review Mechanisms in New South Wales and Prospects for Reform PhD (Law), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor
2019 PhD From Capability to Climate Justice: Analysing Climate Adaptation Policy Measures and Adaptive Capacity in the Global South PhD (Law), College of Human and Social Futures, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor

Past Supervision

Year Level of Study Research Title Program Supervisor Type
2011 Honours The Kables that Bind: Interweaving Incompatabilities in Wainohu v New South Wales Law, Newcastle Law School, University of Newcastle, Australia Principal Supervisor

Dr Joseph Wenta


Newcastle Law School
Newcastle Law School
College of Human and Social Futures

Focus area


Contact Details

Email joseph.wenta@newcastle.edu.au
Phone (02) 4921 6218
Link Twitter


Room Level 5, NeWSpace
Building NeWSpace
Location Newcastle City Campus