Although the Global Restoration Project does not itself publish books, we wish to highlight several books and other pubplications that have a close connection to the aims and operations of the Global Restoration Project. We welcome notifications about other publications written by, or of interest to, others involved in Restoration-related issues.

All Publications (more details on book appear below):

  • Planetary Health in time of converging crises: Reflections of Stockhold, Decolonization, Restoration, and Global Ecological Governance, 19 LEAD Journal 285-300, by John W. Head (2023)
  • More Than Friends? U.S.-Canada Cooperative Frameworks on Agriculture and the Environment, 70 Kansas Law Review 447-482, by John W. Head and Emily Otte (2022).
  • Deep Agroecology and the Homeric Epics: Global Cultural Reform for a Natural-Systems Agriculture, by John W. Head (2021)
  • A Global Corporate Trust for Agroecological Integrity: New Agriculture in a World of Legitimate Eco-States, by John W. Head (2019)
  • Addressing Global Challenges through Pluralistic Sovereignty: A critique of state sovereignty as a centerpiece of international law, 67 Kansas Law Review 727–821, by John W. Head (2019)
  • Kentucky’s Agricultural and Ecological Future: Designing legal and Policy Initiatives for the Commonwealth to Develop Tomorrow’s Foodcrops, 11 Kentucky Journal of Equine, Agriculture & Natural Resources Law 1–61, by John W. Head (2019)
  • A Mediterranean Biome Eco-State: Reorienting Sovereignty in the Mediterranean Basin and its Four Global Correlatives, 10 Mediterranean Review 113–144, by John W. Head (2018)
  • International Law and Agroecological Husbandry: Building Legal Foundations for a New Agriculture, by John W. Head (2017)
  • Global Legal Regimes to Protect the World’s Grasslands, by John W. Head (2012)
  • International Law and Species Diversity: An Immodest Proposal for Implementing a Progressive 30x30 Natural Restoration Initiative in the Great North American Prairies, 33 Kansas Journal of Law & Public Policy (forthcoming, spring 2024).
  • Humans in Nature: Creating our new reality through ecological, cultural, global, ethical, and legal reform (forthcoming in the UMKC LAW REVIEW).

The four books in that list of publications are described more fully here:

Grasslands, prairies, and savannas once covered much of the Earth’s surface. Human action has visited great damage on those natural features, so that today most of them have either disappeared or suffered severe degradation as a result of agricultural conversion, over-grazing, urbanization, species encroachment, fragmentation, climate change, and other factors. John Head examines the state of the world’s temperate and tropical grasslands, and why we should care about them, before turning to an examination of the legal and institutional efforts that have been undertaken to respond to their degradation and to regulate their use.

Through a lively narrative that includes numerous diagrams and over 20 maps, Head shows how laws and regulations at the multilateral, national, and provincial level have all fallen far short of the minimum needed to arrest the withering away of the world’s grasslands and the soil that provides the foundation for all life on our planet. In particular, he explains how the legal systems of Canada, China, Turkey, the USA, and the EU have struck the balances between development versus preservation, and between common needs versus individual property rights, in ways that have done almost nothing to prevent (and much to promote) an accelerating destruction of this crucial aspect of our natural environment. He then offers observations both on “underlying causes” and on “overarching solutions” — with special emphasis on the relationship between agriculture and grasslands and on the role that international law and institutions might play in undertaking an aggressive program of action to protect the world’s grasslands for succeeding generations of our species and others. Available here.

International Law and Agroecological Husbandry, by John W. Head (2017)

Remarkable advances are being made in life science and agricultural research to reform the methods of food production, particularly with regard to staple grain and legume crops, in ways that will better reflect ecological realities. However, advances in science may be insufficient to ensure that these possibilities for agricultural reform are realized in practice and in a sustainable way. This book shows how these can only be achieved through changes in legal norms and institutions at the global level.

Interdisciplinary in character, the book draws from a range of issues involving agricultural innovation, international legal history and principles, treaty commitments, global institutions, and environmental challenges, such as climate change, to propose broad legal changes for transforming global agriculture. It first shows how modern extractive agriculture is unsustainable on economic, environmental, and social grounds. It then examines the potential for natural-systems agriculture (especially perennial-polyculture systems) for overcoming the deficiencies of modern extractive agriculture, especially to offset climate change. Finally it analyses closely the legal innovations that can be adopted at national and international levels to facilitate a transition from modern extractive agriculture to a system based more on ecological principles. In particular the author argues for the creation of a Global Convention on Agroecology. Available here.

A Global Corporate Trust for Agroecological Integrity, by John W. Head (2019)

This book examines global environmental governance and how legal, institutional, and conceptual reform can facilitate a transformation to a new ‘natural-systems’ form of agriculture.

Profound global climate disruption makes it essential that we replace our current agricultural system – described in this book as a fossil-carbon-dependent ‘modern extractive agriculture’ – with a natural-systems agriculture featuring perennial grains growing in polycultures, thereby mimicking the natural grassland and forest ecosystems that modern extractive agriculture has largely destroyed. After examining relevant international legal and conceptual foundations (sovereignty, federalism, global governance) and existing international organizations focusing on agriculture, the book explores legal and institutional opportunities to facilitate dramatic agricultural reform and ecological restoration. Among other things, it explains how innovative federalism structures around the world provide patterns for reorienting global environmental governance, including what the book calls eco-states that would, through exercise of pluralistic sovereignty, be responsible for agroecological management. Drawing from his experience working in international institutions, the author provides detailed global-governance proposals for facilitating the type of agricultural reform that can help avoid ecological collapse, especially through soil degradation and climate change.

This book will be of great interest to students and scholars of international law, agroecology, climate change, ecological restoration, sustainable development, and global governance, as well as policy-makers and practitioners working in these fields. Available here.

Deep Agroecology and the Homeric Epics, by John W. Head (2021)

Just as the “Agroecological Husbandry” book (above) focuses mainly on global legal reforms and the “Global Corporate Trust” book (above) focuses mainly on global institutional reforms to facilitate a new agricultural revolution, this most recent book from John Head focuses on global cultural reforms. In fact, the book’s sub-title says as much; that sub-title is Global Cultural Reforms for a Natural-Systems Agriculture.

Drawing on the Homeric epics, this multi-disciplinary book reveals the cultural transformation which needs to take place in order to transition from today’s modern extractive agricultural system to a sustainable natural-systems agriculture. For this, Head reminds readers of the oldest and most pervasive pair of literary works in the Western canon: the Iliad and the Odyssey. He uses themes from those foundational works – such themes as nostos (homecoming), menis (rage), kleos apthaton (imperishable glory), polutropos (resourceful wandering & turning), and moira fate – to urge the current generations of humans to undertake a cultural transformation. To what end? … to give us the strength and direction needed in addressing global ecological crises, especially the climate crisis and the soil crisis. Head offers a detailed critique of the concept of state sovereignty and explains how innovative federalism structures around the world already show momentum building toward changes in global environmental governance. This momentum must strengthen and accelerate, Head argues, in order to build a new world of responsible energy use, appropriate technology, nature-based agriculture, and competent participatory collaborative institutions. But building such momentum and the new world we need will require a return to cultural foundations and then a project of creating what Head calls “a new Homeric epic” urging our species forward.

Available on e-Book for $44.05 here.