Bram Akkermans, ‘Sustainable Property Law: Towards a Revaluation of Our System of Property Law’

At the beginning of the previous century, one of the oldest colleges at the University of Oxford, New College Oxford, was confronted with a problem with the oak beams in the dining hall. Which needed to be replaced. The fellows of the college were posed with a problem on how to solve this when one of the junior fellow raised the idea to see if there were any oak trees on the many pieces of land held in ownership by the college since its foundation. The college Forrester was summoned to the college and stated upon his arrival the he had been waiting for a request of this sort. As it turns out, at the founding of the college in 1379 young oak trees had been planted to supply the college with new wood if this would ever be necessary in the future. So it happened and the new oak beams in the dining hall at New College Oxford can be viewed for over 100 years already.

The foresight of the founders of the college show a design of an institution that is meant to stay for a very long time. The design does not only foresee in the needs of the generation that would use the building, but also incorporates the many generations that would follow. In our modern day terminology, we could conclude that the design of New College Oxford is a sustainable design …

Akkermans, Bram, Sustainable Property Law: Towards a Revaluation of Our System of Property Law (March 10, 2020).

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