Professor Erica Lyman boasts over fifteen years of experience in international environmental law, with a strong focus on wildlife issues. Since joining the International Environmental Law Project (IELP) at Lewis & Clark Law School as its first staff attorney in 2005, Professor Lyman has gained a reputation for identifying creative strategies that also promote the integrity of treaty regimes. Now as Director of IELP, Professor Lyman continues to practice international wildlife law, with a focus on the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the Convention on Migratory Species, the International Convention on the Regulation of Whaling, and other international institutions that impact wildlife conservation. In recent years, Professor Lyman has expanded her work to include a focus on implementation of international commitments, supporting the revision and development of national legislation and addressing enforcement challenges. In this capacity, Professor Lyman works directly with governments and other stakeholders to strengthen national frameworks for combating wildlife trafficking. Professor Lyman has worked in Malawi, Angola, Kenya, Morocco, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Benin, Togo, Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Liberia, Ghana, Gambia, and Guinea.
Although a significant focus of Professor Lyman’s work is in the field of international wildlife law, she also works on broader issues, such as habitat conservation, climate change, human rights, and trade and the environment. Professor Lyman’s work on climate change included legal support to the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) in the lead-up to the Paris Agreement.
Professor Lyman teaches two clinic courses. She teaches an International Animal and Environmental Law Clinic for J.D. students who are interested in developing the practical skills and substantive knowledge required to tackle contemporary wildlife and other international environmental challenges. Professor Lyman also teaches an International Wildlife Clinic for Animal Law LL.M. students who are interested in wildlife issues and desire to enhance their skill set in order to work in wildlife conservation and international animal protection after receiving their degrees.
In addition to her clinic courses, Professor Lyman teaches an innovative course in international wildlife law that brings the complex politics of international law making to the classroom through in-class exercises that draw on the “hot” topics of international wildlife law, including the trophy hunting, Japanese whaling, polar bear conservation in light of climate change, and other contemporary issues. The design of the class promotes creative problem-solving and complex critical thinking and digs into the underlying politics and policy choices reflected in international wildlife law.