This research group has for quite a few years now systematically focused on the study of the legal regime of water and natural resources, and the influence of this on its protection and use. This is of maximum interest given the scarcity of the resource and how it is affected by climate change.

It has been present and active in various countries in Ibero-America (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Chile, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama and Paraguay) and is preparing to join European projects of the highest quality.

Its specific aims are as follows:

  • To analyse the economic-financial regime of water.
  • The regime of protected natural areas and their management models and use.
  • The constitutional role of law in the environment.
  • The renewal and reuse of urban waste waters.
  • The functioning of the market for water rights.
  • The relations that exist between the demands for water, energy and food.
  • Analysis from the perspective of international law of the demands of climate change relating to the use and protection of water.
  • Legal regulation of insurance in relation with extreme hydrological events, and its management.
  • Protection of the consumer and water services.

Lines of investigation

  1. Water law: Study of the legal system regarding water in Spain and the main new developments in other countries: in particular, the economic-financial regime of water (taxation, principle of cost recovery); environmental consideration of water (environmental flows); extreme hydrological events (drought and flooding); new water resources (reuse of waste water, desalination, market for water rights, aquifers).
  2. Environmental law: Studies are undertaken on the incidence of hydraulic fracturing in the investigation and exploitation of hydrocarbons; environmental impact assessment and climate change law; protected natural areas.
  3. Energy law: Renewable energies (economic regime, study of European law).
  4. Public properties: Water as a natural resource; water as a public property; regime of use of water resources, concessions and authorizations .

Projects undertaken

  • The research group produces commentated editions of water regulations, works of commentary and systematic jurisprudence in the field of public properties and the environment. Its members have published various books, both individual and collective, and articles in high-quality journals.

  • The chief investigator is the organizer of the prestigious conference on water law, Jornadas de Derecho de Aguas, of which the 22nd edition has been held. AGUDEMA manages, coordinates and imparts the European Module course: Water Policy and the Environment, Jean Monnet Chair.

  • From the outset, the group has obtained research and development projects on a competitive basis; it has taken part in normative projects, provides consultancy for various public administrations, and for businesses and individuals.  

  • Knowledge transfer is one of the activities that characterize the AGUDEMA group. Several of its members are responsible for the production of reports and declarations.


– A wide range of publications related to the lines of investigation.

More information on the group’s resources is available at the AGUDEMA web page: http://agudema.unizar.es

Technological Offer/Services

The group is active in the field of the social and legal sciences, so the offer of activities and services is restricted to the above-mentioned ones pertaining to the elaboration of regulations and consultancy.

Other Interest Data

Research grants have been received from the Spanish Agency of International Cooperation and Development in order to carry out various projects with Latin American universities

The group maintains relations with universities and research centres of international relevance. With many of these it has fostered the establishment of agreements with the University of Zaragoza, and members of the group have regularly participated in these institutions in MA and PhD programmes, etc.

The group has published books in collaboration with professors from the National Universities of Cuyo and of Mendoza, the Externado University of Colombia, the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte in Brazil (editions in Brazil and in Spain), and The College of Mexico.

The chief investigator has received honorary doctorates from the Argentinean National Universities of Cuyo, Mendoza and Salta. Several members of the group have been guest professors at various universities in Latin America and Europe.

Noticias del Grupo



Chief investigator:

Beatriz Setuáin Mendía